This week community control of police and the failings of the Biden campaign were on your minds. We share your letters for “Yes, Defund the Cops — And Put Them Under Community Control” and “Freedom Rider: Democrats Move Right and Towards Defeat.”
“Yes, Defund the Cops — And Put Them Under Community Control” by Glen Ford argues that the current street agitations must be developed into a movement for community control of police rather than one which defers to black elected officials.
Andrew L. writes:
“Another outstanding article speaking truth to power. What really is shocking, how many people of any background would not 100% say George Floyd was murdered is beyond belief. Benjamin Dixon has a very similar point of view about so called allies in the Black Caucus.
“I do have one question I have asked many people about, why and how did we give any weapons of any kind other than a night stick to cops? What law other than the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA), a federal law enacted in 2004, allows cops to carry weapons on the job decades or a century ago? Why do we allow routine patrol cops to carry? Why are we one of the few countries that do?
“Freedom Rider: Democrats Move Right and Towards Defeat” by Margaret Kimberley examines the reactionary nature of the Biden campaign.
Reg Callaway writes:
“Margaret Kimberley‘s post highlights why ‘the people’ need to demand a different kind of government, post haste. US style democracy is a ‘tails, they win and heads, they win’ — regardless of which ‘party’ wins. US demonizing politics is an enemy of an inclusive government.
“A very recent example of undemocratic principles at play is the passage of D.C. statehood in the House. Senate GOP are applying a racial numerical standard to D.C. statehood because of its sizable Black population, which means DC won’t become a state for the foreseeable future. Partisan hacks such as Senators Tom ‘Send in the Troops’ Cotton and Mitch ‘Grim Reaper’ McConnell would rather oppose it to the ends of earth than to allow D.C. citizens have a voice in the federal government. Undemocratically silencing as many minority voices as possible is an established bipartisan affair.
“Some civic questions. What kind of democracy allows partisans from distant states to dictate D.C. statehood conditions? Why can’t ‘the people’ in DC decide for themselves if they want to become a state? What kind of democracy allows majority representation to disenfranchise minority issues and allow oligarchs to rule from behind the scenes against the 99%? What kind of ‘democracy’ forces well intentioned people to swear their loyalty to a party over the interest of ‘the people?’ Democracy should be about continual upgrading for a better condition for all. Unfortunately, that is not what Americans have. Views from vulnerable people rarely get a hearing because legislatures find comfort in ‘majority win’ politics.
“Black politicians like Jim Clayburn (D) SC gaslight us into thinking — ‘to be heard, you must vote.’ What he and his ilk fail to publicly acknowledge is that U.S. type democracy is foremost ‘pay to play’ and if ‘the people’ revolt in any way shape or form, expect a brutal take down. In their callous minds, the extent of ‘the people’s’ democracy is limited to filling out oval circles on a ballot sheet every 2 or 4 years. That’s it. And when your candidate becomes a traitorous modern day Benedict Arnold legislature that votes against your interest, too bad.
“Without a careful rethink on what a democracy is supposed to be and demanding a government ‘by the people for the people,’ the tyranny of the status quo will be left unchecked. Democracy should not be just for the special interest nor should majorities be allowed to trample minority and individual rights.”
The question of democracy is still central to the struggle for freedom in this society. A proper definition based on black liberation, peace and justice must be worked out in the ideological struggles ahead.
Jahan Choudhry is Comments Editor for Black Agenda Report. He is an organizer with the Saturday Free School based in Philadelphia, PA.
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