While attending a rally this past Sunday, the mayor of Minneapolis gave a short speech about systemic racism and other “Obama-era talking points,” as Will Lloyd puts it in the Spectator.us.
Protesters asked Mayor Jacob Frey if he supported defunding the police department, Frey answered (bravely) that he was not. Frey walked away as a crowd of thousands booed and verbally pursued him with chants of SHAME! SHAME! SHAME!
Abolition Just the Beginning
Ridding communities of the police is merely one demand on the laundry list, continues Mr. Lloyd.
The Minneapolis abolition group MPD150 is typical in this respect. After abolition comes everything else:
Dismantling the police will require reallocating their budget and assets to support real solutions to community desperation: good, well-paying jobs, affordable housing, healthy food, empowering education, accessible health care, removal of toxins, etc. Ending the brutal police system is, by necessity, a program for a more just and resilient city.
Give Abolitionists a Hearing
Police reform needs to happen. Consider who is running Minneapolis and how police unions protect bad cops.
But it is also worth asking questions of those who would abolish the police, pressing them to be specific and detailed about their stated goals for a cop-less society.
- Exactly how will restorative justice work in practice?
- How would it solve a homicide?
- How would it deal with gangs and human traffickers and drug dealers?
- Why would this be an improvement on current policing methods?
- Who will pay for the full suite of reforms? How could they fail?
- Is the system really so corrupt that it must be burned down before anything else can happen?
- How can you guarantee that there would not be a nationwide version of the Ferguson or Baltimore effect if the police were disbanded?
Community Justice vs Communal Vigilantism
A cop-less world would leave the poor with the Mafia and the rich with Blackwater, as NRO”s Michael Brendan Dougherty notes. Without police, it’s hard to imagine that America will enthusiastically take up community justice along ancient indigenous lines, rather than slide back to the communal vigilantism.
Every top-ranking Democrat is shortly going to be in Minneapolis Mayor Frey’s position, predicts Mr. Lloyd.
Joe Biden is going to face that question sooner rather than later. If he does what Frey did he’s going to anger a lot of people he needs to turn out in November.
If (Biden) says yes — defund, then abolish the police, replace them with peace circles — he’s going to hand Donald Trump far more votes than he deserves after the madness of this year.