African-American Asphyxiated by Police in Minneapolis - Page 157 - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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#15106409
@wat0n

1. Yes, addressing the underlying causes would allow cities to spend less on police. That is another way of saying that we can defund the police and use that money to provide programs that will reduce crime significantly.

2. I am going to guess that your argument is as follows: the USA has a gang problem, which causes an increase in situations where police killings are justified, and this explains the discrepancy between the USA and other countries. Is that a correct summary of your new argument?
#15106413
Pants-of-dog wrote:@wat0n

1. Yes, addressing the underlying causes would allow cities to spend less on police. That is another way of saying that we can defund the police and use that money to provide programs that will reduce crime significantly.


Only when those underlying causes have been identified and addressed. Doing so will take several years and in the meantime defunding the police would be counterproductive.

Pants-of-dog wrote:2. I am going to guess that your argument is as follows: the USA has a gang problem, which causes an increase in situations where police killings are justified, and this explains the discrepancy between the USA and other countries. Is that a correct summary of your new argument?


Yes, although gangs are only an example (even if it's one of the most important reasons, particularly in large cities). There's also the issue of why police killings by 100k inhabitants are actually higher in small towns and rural areas.
#15106415
@wat0n

1, I would be very surprised to find that community activists from the neighbourhoods most afflicted by violent crime have not already done that research.

2. Okay. Let me know when you have evidence of the link between gangs and police violence. Note that your point about rural areas and small towns seems to contradict that claim, if we assume gangs only exist in urban areas.
#15106431
Pants-of-dog wrote:@wat0n

1, I would be very surprised to find that community activists from the neighbourhoods most afflicted by violent crime have not already done that research.


And I would have thought this was a matter for criminologists and the like :roll:

Pants-of-dog wrote:2. Okay. Let me know when you have evidence of the link between gangs and police violence. Note that your point about rural areas and small towns seems to contradict that claim, if we assume gangs only exist in urban areas.


Indeed, that's a weakness - the issues around rural and small town America may be different in significant ways (although they are not completely free of gang activity). But I didn't say gangs are necessarily the only reason, just a major one.
#15106478
Pants-of-dog wrote:@wat0n

1, Are you arguing that neither criminologists nor communities understand the issues and how to address root causes of violent crime?


It's possible (criminology isn't a solved field at all), but between both I'll pick criminologists as being more knowledgeable about the causes of crime.

Pants-of-dog wrote:2. Let me know when you have evidence and an argument. Also, do you think systemic racism could be a problem?


Maybe, but the evidence is not strong. The issues around rural and small town America are also a weakness for the systemic racism claims: Minorities have a greater tendency to live in urban areas, with suburban and rural ones being largely non-Hispanic White.
#15106480
Only when those underlying causes have been identified and addressed. Doing so will take several years and in the meantime defunding the police would be counterproductive.
\

IT is astonishing to me to think that you actually believe what you are writing. Just like all of the other Trump supporters you don't even bother to understand what the movement means to do. But you really don't want to discuss the issues. You are just looking to justify your racist agenda. I posted this to remind anyone reading that this is what you are doing. And you know you are doing it.

This thread is not about defunding certain police activities; removing the police from issues and places where they do not belong. But those looking to cover up what police have been doing find this a good bit of cover. The fact remains that we need to reform how police act toward their communities. We need to remind them that they serve the people. They have mostly forgotten this.

Trump supporters are desperate for an issue that can cover a multitude of sins. This is not it.
#15106482
Drlee wrote:\

IT is astonishing to me to think that you actually believe what you are writing. Just like all of the other Trump supporters you don't even bother to understand what the movement means to do. But you really don't want to discuss the issues. You are just looking to justify your racist agenda. I posted this to remind anyone reading that this is what you are doing. And you know you are doing it.


No, I actually don't. Why don't you teach me about racism since you seem to be so well versed in it given your constant projection, your self-declared history of voting for racists in American presidential elections and so on, Josef?

Drlee wrote:This thread is not about defunding certain police activities; removing the police from issues and places where they do not belong. But those looking to cover up what police have been doing find this a good bit of cover. The fact remains that we need to reform how police act toward their communities. We need to remind them that they serve the people. They have mostly forgotten this.

Trump supporters are desperate for an issue that can cover a multitude of sins. This is not it.


Some people do want to defund and even abolish the police, in case you haven't been following the protests. It's silly to even pretend this isn't being unironically proposed.

I don't think police should be defunded, even if it needs to be reformed. And if the underlying social causes of crime are addressed, then much of it would in fact be unnecessary and thus defunding would be an obvious choice.
#15106522
I don't think police should be defunded, even if it needs to be reformed. And if the underlying social causes of crime are addressed, then much of it would in fact be unnecessary and thus defunding would be an obvious choice.


Ok. So let's look for common ground here.

I agree that police should not be defunded. Indeed I believe that police need more funds for some things. For example, cheap as it is, community policing. I would be for national certification and increased education and continuing education for police officers.

What I would do though, and what many people mean when they speak of defunding, is to off load from our professional police officers the myriad of tasks that they have no business doing. They should not be participating in drug task forces. They should not be funding armored vehicles or large numbers of assault weapons. They should not be in schools unless called for a specific crime. They should not be doing routine fingerprinting. I would even separate the traffic enforcement from commissioned police officer tasks giving that instead to a new traffic enforcement department. My new police force would be leaner, better trained and the officers would live in the communities they police whenever possible. Certainly the leadership should live in the community so every officer knows that their sergeant lives with the people who they have been given to serve. And serve is the word.

And if the underlying social causes of crime are addressed, then much of it would in fact be unnecessary and thus defunding would be an obvious choice.


And this requires money. Sad to say. People object to "throwing money" at problems. But. We need better teachers in poor neighborhoods. If it takes big bucks to get the good ones then it is money well spent. We need to have far more vocational technical education available. It is all fine and good to encourage a young poor kid to get a degree in English, and it will make them more salable, but teaching them to leave high school a trained electrician or plumber will catapult them into the middle class. We need to control big business and force them (economically) to put stores and jobs in poor neighborhoods. So if Walmart wants to put a new store in Richtown Estates they have to put one in City Center Project as well. Many poor neighborhoods do not even have a grocery store.

Finally there is absolutely no reason whatsoever for a citizen of a country as wealthy as the US to work full time for a wage that will not provide them basic living expenses. Our minimum wage not only disrespects workers, many of whom are doing really difficult tasks, but it transfers responsibility for their basic need, housing, food and medical care onto the taxpayer. So when we are providing food stamps, housing vouchers and public medical care help to someone who works full time at the grocery store, we are subsidizing the employer. Walmart has employees on food stamps and in public housing while the ownership of the company are beyond wealthy. They are unspeakably wealthy. The owner of Amazon is worth over 150 billion dollars and his employees, the ones making him that wealthy, are not getting their fair share of the profits.

Can we agree on this stuff at least?
#15106540
@wat0n

1. I still have no idea where you are going with this. But as long as we agree that we should drastically reduce police budgets and instead use that money to address root causes of crime.

2, Let me know when you have evidence and an argument. Also, do you think systemic racism could be a problem?
#15106547
Drlee wrote:Ok. So let's look for common ground here.


Good. More of this needs to be happening.

Drlee wrote:I agree that police should not be defunded. Indeed I believe that police need more funds for some things. For example, cheap as it is, community policing. I would be for national certification and increased education and continuing education for police officers.


That would probably be a good thing, I would defer to criminologists for learning more about how to proceed more concretely in this direction.

Drlee wrote:What I would do though, and what many people mean when they speak of defunding, is to off load from our professional police officers the myriad of tasks that they have no business doing. They should not be participating in drug task forces. They should not be funding armored vehicles or large numbers of assault weapons. They should not be in schools unless called for a specific crime. They should not be doing routine fingerprinting. I would even separate the traffic enforcement from commissioned police officer tasks giving that instead to a new traffic enforcement department. My new police force would be leaner, better trained and the officers would live in the communities they police whenever possible. Certainly the leadership should live in the community so every officer knows that their sergeant lives with the people who they have been given to serve. And serve is the word.


No problem with this generally either. My only caveat is that I would keep the weaponry they already have for now, but ideally they should be carrying less and less firepower around on a daily basis as time goes on. I think in some cases it may actually become necessary to keep them available before things really improve in some cities (see more below).

Drlee wrote:And this requires money. Sad to say. People object to "throwing money" at problems. But. We need better teachers in poor neighborhoods. If it takes big bucks to get the good ones then it is money well spent. We need to have far more vocational technical education available. It is all fine and good to encourage a young poor kid to get a degree in English, and it will make them more salable, but teaching them to leave high school a trained electrician or plumber will catapult them into the middle class. We need to control big business and force them (economically) to put stores and jobs in poor neighborhoods. So if Walmart wants to put a new store in Richtown Estates they have to put one in City Center Project as well. Many poor neighborhoods do not even have a grocery store.


I agree, and indeed many poor neighborhoods are not served by any major grocers, forcing them to ride a car to do so. I would say that part of the reason for this is (sadly) the high physical insecurity these neighborhoods face - would you open a grocery store in a neighborhood with high gang activity? You may be a local monopoly, but how long would it take for extortion to happen? It's a process that is not different from the experiences of Italian Americans and the Mafia back in the day.

Drlee wrote:Finally there is absolutely no reason whatsoever for a citizen of a country as wealthy as the US to work full time for a wage that will not provide them basic living expenses. Our minimum wage not only disrespects workers, many of whom are doing really difficult tasks, but it transfers responsibility for their basic need, housing, food and medical care onto the taxpayer. So when we are providing food stamps, housing vouchers and public medical care help to someone who works full time at the grocery store, we are subsidizing the employer. Walmart has employees on food stamps and in public housing while the ownership of the company are beyond wealthy. They are unspeakably wealthy. The owner of Amazon is worth over 150 billion dollars and his employees, the ones making him that wealthy, are not getting their fair share of the profits.


I think this is (strangely enough) where we disagree most. Rather than hiking the minimum wage, which risks raised unemployment, I would prefer to see more direct income redistribution. Social policy can be carried out to that effect, but this also requires tax hikes. In the end it falls into the "throw money at problems" label, but it is entirely possible to do it intelligently so not only poverty and inequality are alleviated but also so at least some of the reasons for them are addressed.

Drlee wrote:Can we agree on this stuff at least?


Broadly speaking, yes. Do you agree with the following?

  • Organized crime is a major problem for poor neighborhoods in some large cities. Half or more of all homicides in cities like Chicago or Los Angeles are gang related (understood as "homicide where gang members are either the perpetrator, the victim or both"). It also affects minorities (namely, Blacks and Latinos) the most.
  • Although the communities who are affected loathe this reality, much of it is outside their control. If a community activist becomes too problematic for gangs, they can deal with this guy in the same way the Mafia did. It is also not something inherent to them, just as it wasn't inherent to Italian Americans: As poor people get access to more opportunities, many will be able to find stuff that is more profitable to them than gang membership - just as it occurred to Italian Americans as they whitified.
  • As such, it stands to reason that a good chunk of the police violence problem in large cities is likely related to gang activity. Either directly (say, cops killing gang members) or indirectly (say, cops killing someone else in a neighborhood with a high rate of gang activity because they have to be in a state of high alert whenever they enter gang territory). So is the need for PDs to be heavily armed in some large cities, since organized crime is capable of getting all sorts of firearms.
  • One major reason of why these gangs even exist is because they engage in the illegal drug trade. Softening the War on Drugs would thus harm them by allowing competitors to enter that market, in the same way the end of Prohibition hurt the Mafia by eliminating its monopoly on alcohol distribution. As such, there is room for Federal policy on the matter of drug legalization - cities alone won't be able to solve it.
  • If this road was taken, it is reasonable to assume gangs would first try to switch to other sort of activities to make up for the lost revenue. As such, the problem may in fact get worse and not better in the first few years of a drug legalization, and thereby police action will be necessary to deal with this. This is why I am against defunding and disarming the police at this stage.
  • Furthermore, police action would not be enough to deal with the predictable switching by gangs to other types of illegal activities. It would also be necessary to offer amnesty and protection to gang members who surrender their weapons to the police. Furthermore, the immediate economic effects on the affected neighborhoods would be significant: One may not like it, but the fact of the matter is that gangs also engage in economic activity in the neighborhoods they operate in, so ending gangs will do major short term economic damage there. It will thus be necessary to also engage in a concurrent economic recovery plan for poor neighborhoods, on top of the longer term anti-poverty and neighborhood development plans you mentioned.
  • At last, the rate of police killings is greater in smaller towns and rural areas than in suburban areas or large cities. The reasons for this are not well understood just yet and more research is necessary. Since minorities tend to live in large cities, this is also a White problem for the most part - maybe related to White poverty, or the opioid crisis, or the poor economic performance in these zones during the last few years. Either way, it is a problem that needs to be addressed and is yet another proof that it's not so much about something inherent to "race" and other unscientific trash, but about poverty and other social ills.

Pants-of-dog wrote:@wat0n

1. I still have no idea where you are going with this. But as long as we agree that we should drastically reduce police budgets and instead use that money to address root causes of crime.


It's the other way around. Address the root causes of crime, then decrease police funding as crime rates go down since it will be unnecessary.

Pants-of-dog wrote:2, Let me know when you have evidence and an argument. Also, do you think systemic racism could be a problem?


I already answered this.
#15106550
@wat0n

1. No, the police can lose all the military stuff, for example, and not be any less effective. Even reducing the police budgets to something like what other countries use would be huge. Ideally, you dismantle the police entirely and build something new that costs less.

2. No, not as far as I can see.
#15106552
Pants-of-dog wrote:@wat0n

1. No, the police can lose all the military stuff, for example, and not be any less effective. Even reducing the police budgets to something like what other countries use would be huge. Ideally, you dismantle the police entirely and build something new that costs less.


Do you have any evidence to that effect? For instance, it seems to me that gangs have a rather large firepower capability (assault rifles, etc) which would justify having a police force that is stronger than they are.

Of course, this is not to say that the police is necessarily operating in the most cost efficient way - police unions are strong enough to assume this is not the case. But it also seems to me that they have an objective need to be rather heavily armed in some cities where gang activity is significant.

Pants-of-dog wrote:2. No, not as far as I can see.


:roll:
#15106558
@wat0n

1. If you want to support your claims with evidence, please do so. Considering the systemic problems of policing in the UsA, it seems to make more sense to just get rid of police entirely and replace it with a new form of keeping communities safe.

2. You did that thing where you stretched your claim over several posts while addressing more than one argument and used pronouns without being clear as to which nouns they refer to. You were trying to explain why the USA has a significantly higher level of police brutality than other countries, and then segued into why systemic racism is apparently not one of those factors. Perhaps you could address one argument and then the other.
#15106560
Pants-of-dog wrote:@wat0n

1. If you want to support your claims with evidence, please do so. Considering the systemic problems of policing in the UsA, it seems to make more sense to just get rid of police entirely and replace it with a new form of keeping communities safe.


I would actually be more interested in your evidence for this. In particular, I would be interested in any examples of how disarming the police would help dealing with organized crime.

It would seem to me that if anything one of the things that helped was the gradual increase in the firepower in hands of police throughout the 20th century, paralleling the increase in the firepower available for civilians. But maybe it's just a coincidence.

Pants-of-dog wrote:2. You did that thing where you stretched your claim over several posts while addressing more than one argument and used pronouns without being clear as to which nouns they refer to. You were trying to explain why the USA has a significantly higher level of police brutality than other countries, and then segued into why systemic racism is apparently not one of those factors. Perhaps you could address one argument and then the other.


The issue would seemingly be related to poverty and the ensuing gang activity that gets fueled by the illegal drug trade. It is a process comparable to that experienced by Italian Americans. In both cases it is a consequence of socioeconomic factors more than anything else.

Also, the claims around systemic racism are always interesting in today's world. You cited Switzerland as an example to follow, yet at the same time you consider that one should listen to communities, right? Well, you can also find allegations of systemic racism in Swiss policing, despite having one of the lowest rates of police killings in the world. Do you think this is correct?
#15106563
@wat0n

1. Disarming the police would end the organised crime done by police. Examples include the killing of George Floyd, the cover-up of the killing of Elijah McClain, collusion by DAs to give impunity to murderers, and other related crimes. Giving them more guns would be the exact opposite of that.

2. Which issue is seemingly related to poverty and the ensuing gang activity that gets fueled by the illegal drug trade?

What process are you referring to when you say that it is comparable to that experienced by Italian Americans?

Which two cases are a consequence of socioeconomic factors more than anything else?

No, I never said we should follow the Swiss model. I said that it is rational to try to reduce police brutality and killings to the level of other countries like Switzerland and Denmark. I am not at all surprised that Swiss police have a problem with racism, considering how popular xenophobic politicians are there.
#15106567
Pants-of-dog wrote:@wat0n

1. Disarming the police would end the organised crime done by police. Examples include the killing of George Floyd, the cover-up of the killing of Elijah McClain, collusion by DAs to give impunity to murderers, and other related crimes. Giving them more guns would be the exact opposite of that.


How would it help with the killings carried out by non-police crime?

Pants-of-dog wrote:2. Which issue is seemingly related to poverty and the ensuing gang activity that gets fueled by the illegal drug trade?

What process are you referring to when you say that it is comparable to that experienced by Italian Americans?

Which two cases are a consequence of socioeconomic factors more than anything else?

No, I never said we should follow the Swiss model. I said that it is rational to try to reduce police brutality and killings to the level of other countries like Switzerland and Denmark. I am not at all surprised that Swiss police have a problem with racism, considering how popular xenophobic politicians are there.


Gang activity is related to poverty (where do they operate?) and drug trade (what products do they trade wherever they operate?).

Italian Americans experienced a similar process: They were poor, had initial problems to integrate as a result (including being victims of lynchings and discrimination), the Mafia clearly affected their communities in the early and mid 20th century and it even engaged in the illegal trade of alcohol during Prohibition. Yet Italian Americans whitified as their incomes increased and anti-Italian racism began to fade.
#15106574
@wat0n

1. The causes of organised crime need to be addressed regardless of whether or not police are abolished. Police do not address these causes. Instead, they only react to, investigate, and sometimes arrest organised crime. Freeing funds from police would help provide finds to address these causes.

2. If gang activity is related to poverty, then the solution is to address and eradicate poverty. If gang activity is related to the drug trade, make drugs legal. The comparison with Italians seems irrelevant and ignores significant differences, so I am not going to address it.

Back on topic: why does the US have such a high level of police killings and brutality?
#15106575
Pants-of-dog wrote:@wat0n

1. The causes of organised crime need to be addressed regardless of whether or not police are abolished. Police do not address these causes. Instead, they only react to, investigate, and sometimes arrest organised crime. Freeing funds from police would help provide finds to address these causes.

2. If gang activity is related to poverty, then the solution is to address and eradicate poverty. If gang activity is related to the drug trade, make drugs legal. The comparison with Italians seems irrelevant and ignores significant differences, so I am not going to address it.

Back on topic: why does the US have such a high level of police killings and brutality?


Have you ever considered the possibility that one cause for organized crime, as it happens with police crime, is that the criminals manage to get away with it unnoticed or uncaught? How would you catch criminals and deter crime without a superior police force?

And I don't see why the case of Italian Americans is unrelated at all.
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