This afternoon, I was obligated to attend a town hall event about police-community relations in the Twin Cities metro area.
You can imagine the type of crowd in attendance.
The first group of panelists was made up of local prosecutors who urged an adversarial audience that they were doing all they could to hold officers accountable for immoral and criminal conduct including but not limited to: officer brutality, untruthful police reports, and racial profiling.
Needless to say, this round of panelists was not very well received, but for all intents and purposes seemed like honest men who are combating an overburdened, corrupt system. That was my impression at least, reality may be different.
The keynote speaker, Michael W. Quinn, was a Minneapolis Police Sergeant and is currently CEO of The International Ethics and Leadership Training Bureau LLC. Quinn’s book Walking with the Devil: The Police Code of Silence was featured on Cop Block in a 2014 feature. I’ve linked Cop Block’s review below.
Mr. Quinn had a lot to say about his unique approach to training officers, mainly by focusing on protecting people’s rights as opposed to making arrests. He also trains police officers to mutually assure ethical behavior by implementing an acountabilibuddy system making an officer’s partner acountabilibuddyable for unethical conduct.If you are interested in reading raw, real stories from the beat, grab a copy through my amazon affiliate link here:
The final panel was made up of local community leaders, a public defender, a civil rights attorney, and a criminal justice professor. The panel was titled: “Police and Community Trust.” The panel’s affinity for the ideas presented by Black Lives Matter and the NAACP quickly filled the room, which was very receptive to their rhetoric.
In Contra Krugman fashion, I will leave my critiques of what was said until I’ve summed up their arguments objectively.
First on the docket was the idea that trust between law enforcement and minority communities implies some kind of level footing. In the minds of the panelists, this level footing required law enforcement to wholly admit that police activity is an institutional instrument of white supremacy that must be eradicated and followed by reparations of some sort in order to bring about equality.
Ideally, most of the panelists desired to abolish the police and seek alternative methods of keeping communities safe. Their ideas to this point were to create “safe spaces” to which individuals in need could go to be safe from both their attackers and the police. Other, less radical ideas from the panel were to require police officers to purchase their own liability insurance, or to require police officers to actually live in the neighborhoods that they serve.
Moreover, the panel was pervaded by this sense of frustration and a desire for revolution. They likened themselves to an occupied populace in wartime. They drew quite a few references to slavery (surprise), and asserted that slavery was still going on–mainly perpetrated by police.
One of the panelists expressed that he is “beyond ‘let’s figure it out'” and that “the economics aren’t equal.” Most strikingly, it was declared that “we’re at war” and that “President #45 is committing state terrorism against people of color.” (They refuse to say Trump’s name).
Now, while minorities have plenty to complain about (mostly problems caused by government), this astounding conglomeration of half-baked Marxist propaganda is laughably childish. Obviously, our society is beyond thoughtful dialogue. I couldn’t imagine trying to bring alternative ideas to their attention, especially after the above statements were made.
To begin with, how would reparations work? Who would get the money, and where would it come from? Would the reparations even be money? How could you justify the morality of stealing wealth from an innocent and vaguely defined group of people who personally had nothing to do with events of the distant, or more recent past? Would it even work? What do people do with unearned helicopter money? Most of the people who are morally culpable for this issues are dead now.
Secondly, they completely failed to mention the war on drugs, and the role it played in bringing about mass incarceration and the complete, cyclical destruction of inner-city communities.
At one point the minimum wage was mentioned, but predictably, they wanted it raised. As Milton Friedman said the minimum wage is the most racist law on the books. He describes this cycle of poverty below.
(While Mr. Friedman is flawed on some topics, he is astute on several matters including occupational licensure and the minimum wage)
At some point in their psychogenic Marxist fugue, the panelists actually touched on some compelling ideas. Chief among them: abolishing the police!
However, their alternatives were pathetic, unimaginative and would probably result in street justice akin to localized purge-style anarchy that normal people are afraid of. Of course, as Ancaps, we know that private security agencies are the solution that they are looking for.
For instance, private, for-profit security agencies like the Detroit Threat Management Center have had amazing results keeping neighborhoods safe in Detroit’s most dangerous areas where traditional police won’t go. In 20 years of operation, the agency has had ZERO court dates, ZERO officers killed, and ZERO clients injured or killed.
HOW have these panelists never heard of these guys!? More importantly, how have YOU never heard of these guys?
Tom Woods did a great episode on these charitable, profit-based heroes. You’d better check them out.
Well, that concludes my review of this afternoon’s panel. Believe it or not, this kind of rhetoric is fostered and pervaded by law schools across the country.
God help us all.
Thanks for reading Liberty Weekly! I hope you all have a great weekend. Don’t be afraid to tell me what you think in the comments below.