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Thread: Police and Prison Abolition Thread

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by MHBDemon View Post
    It is you sir that has the pavlovian response. You have no substantive arguments to anything I post, other than that you disagree with my use of the term "abolitionist." I'm going to call myself an abolitionist because its what I believe. If you don't agree with me, its not because of my use of the word. Its because you disagree with what I stand for. If you disagree with what abolitionists stand for, then thats fine, but stop fucking coming around telling me how much I agree with what you believe, and how its incumbent on me to compromise on my beliefs to agree to whichever shitty neoliberal stance you are taking each day.
    Wrong again. I agree there needs to be many things done to fix our mass incarceration problem.

    You are 10000% in saying it's not the word. It's absolutely the word and I explained why, but you ignore anything I say.

    It's in no way "comprising your beliefs" to change a word or phrase that harms your dreams.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by AsesinoDeTortugas View Post
    Said John C. Calhoun circa mid-19th century
    That's a different story and a different time. It's the perfect word for that issue.

  3. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by RJKarl View Post
    Wrong again. I agree there needs to be many things done to fix our mass incarceration problem.

    You are 10000% in saying it's not the word. It's absolutely the word and I explained why, but you ignore anything I say.

    It's in no way "comprising your beliefs" to change a word or phrase that harms your dreams.
    Hey RJ, do you believe in abolition? No, cool. But i do, so Iím going to call myself an abolitionist. Unless you have a different word that means the same thing.

    What should slavery abolitionists have called themselves?

    Your argument is moronic.

  4. #24
    This is a weird argument.
    We're going to be good again.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by MHBDemon View Post
    Hey RJ, do you believe in abolition? No, cool. But i do, so Iím going to call myself an abolitionist. Unless you have a different word that means the same thing.

    What should slavery abolitionists have called themselves?

    Your argument is moronic.
    I answered you without any insults, but you can't do the same. It shows your weakness.

    You know nothing about marketing and won't listen to those who do.

    If you call your movement "abolitionist", it will not work. I explained why. It's a word that scares people and pushes others away. When you start something new and possibly radical, you don't want to give the other side any way to poke holes and create fear. "Abolitionist" or "Abolition" is counter productive.

    You'd rather be pure in your own eyes and lose than make a minuscule change and win.

  6. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by RJKarl View Post
    I answered you without any insults, but you can't do the same. It shows your weakness.

    You know nothing about marketing and won't listen to those who do.

    If you call your movement "abolitionist", it will not work. I explained why. It's a word that scares people and pushes others away. When you start something new and possibly radical, you don't want to give the other side any way to poke holes and create fear. "Abolitionist" or "Abolition" is counter productive.

    You'd rather be pure in your own eyes and lose than make a minuscule change and win.
    Yea but he is literally an abolitionist. He wants to poke holes in the arguments of and create fear among people who are ideologically committed to sustaining contemporary policing and incarceration practices. Youíre making his point for him, RJ. Itís okay for people to disagree on political ideology.
    We're going to be good again.

  7. #27
    So this post is going to be a long one, buckle up. But first, a couple of disclaimers:

    1. All statistics used in this post are from peer-reviewed studies. I will not be citing as if this is an academic paper (already did that), but if you would like specific materials, message me and I'm more than happy to share them.
    2. Many of the studies are from the years 2005-2015. That is because statistical data on mass incarceration is very slow. With 50 individual state justice systems and a federal system all working on huge backlogs, it takes forever to get the data. If new data comes out, I will update accordingly
    3. The focus of my paper was on the crippling effect mass incarceration has on black Americans, so that is the focus of this post as well. But mass incarceration affects all Americans and the points I will try to explain apply to all Americans as well.


    Mass incarceration and how we got to the point we are at basically boils down to two ideas regarding the purposes of criminal justice: retribution or rehabilitation. If you feel that the criminal justice system should bring about retributive justice (i.e., an eye for an eye), you likely don't feel that there is anything wrong with the criminal justice system as is other than the backlogs in the court prevent more people from going to prison. The goal of the system is to restore justice to the victim who was wronged and that usually has strict statutory punishments that are meted out according to charges brought against a defendant. On the other hand, rehabilitative justice seeks to (obviously) rehabilitate the offender through proactive measures (e.g., drug treatment programs, anger management, mental health facilities, etc.) aimed toward returning the offender to society a better person that is not likely to commit further crimes. I am firmly in the latter camp and that should be known before I get into the nitty gritty of the rest of this post.

    The two biggest issues that I found in my research regarding mass incarceration recently were disproportionate targeting of minorities by U.S. police departments and the criminalization of poverty. Now, these two issues are interrelated and can compound quite quickly. But to start, I will focus on what I believe is the primary reason that mass incarceration is such a problem and that is the disproportionate targeting. North Carolina did a study that found over 80% of reporting law enforcement agencies in the state stopped black drivers more often than white drivers, averaging just under twice as often. Multiple counties reported numbers between 2-3 times as likely to stop black drivers. But the crown jewel of them all was Randolph County where the Sheriff's Department stopped black drivers almost 8 times as often as white drivers.

    Even more concerning is what happened after those stops. Of those agencies reporting, 88% of them had twice as many full searches of black drivers as white drivers, and 70% had at least that rate for arrests. It should be noted that as of the most recent numbers, NC is around 71% white and 22% black, so extrapolating similar percentages of drivers (and probably that is an overestimation as whites are more likely to get licenses and drive than blacks) shows a serious issue that introduces large populations of minorities into the criminal justice system.

    But lest you think this is a problem that just exists in a South that still has lingering racial tensions, the NYPD had very similar issues. In 2012, the NYCLU reviewed NYPD stop data for 2011 and found that 92% of precincts in NYC reported having the majority of police stops in that year being minority "offenders" with 33 precincts reporting rates above 90% and two Bronx precincts reporting an astounding 98% of stops being minorities. In all of 2011, NYPD stopped more black men aged 18-35 than there were total black men that age living in New York. Similar post-stop issues existed in NYC as well, with 89% of frisks related to a stop occurring to stopped minorities.

    Now why is this disproportionate targeting such a huge issue? Well for one, it demonstrates huge issues related to race and law enforcement in America that travels across state borders. But as it specifically pertains to black Americans, it starts a cycle of poverty and incarceration that is nigh unbreakable. As of 2018, black Americans earn 75% of the hourly wages that whites earn, black households have 61% of the household income that whites have, and have just 10% of the overall net worth of white families. The average black family's net worth is $17,600; the average white family's is $171,000. For reasons that have been well-said above, this is a huge issue in a criminal justice system that makes you pay exorbitant amounts just to hope to have a chance at gaining your freedom back.

    The Prison Policy Initiative's 2018 review of the U.S. criminal justice system found that around 65% of Americans currently in jail have not been convicted of a crime. The sole reason they are in prison is because they could not pay cash bail while awaiting trial. From the early 1990's until 2009, pre-trial releases based on cash bail rose from 37% of cases to 60% of cases, and the average bail amount rose more than doubled from $25,400 to $55,500 in a similar time frame. This just kills black defendants and their families as they are the only demographic where the average pre-incarceration rate of both male and female offenders fell below the poverty line. In essence, American law enforcement targets black Americans, locks them up, and then holds the key hostage until they can afford to buy their freedom back. No conviction necessary, you are imprisoned without appeal.

    In the interest of not completely boring you all with additional issues such as the disparate treatment of minorities in plea bargaining and the overcharging of court fees to even indigent defendants, I'll stop here. But the bottom line is this: until cash bail is totally eliminated from the criminal justice system, there will continue to be a mass incarceration crisis in this country.

    If you have any additional questions related to this post or if you all would like to hear more about other issues I researched, please let me know. More than happy to share.

  8. #28
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    I'd open every cell in Attica send em to Africa.

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strickland33 View Post
    Yea but he is literally an abolitionist. He wants to poke holes in the arguments of and create fear among people who are ideologically committed to sustaining contemporary policing and incarceration practices. Youíre making his point for him, RJ. Itís okay for people to disagree on political ideology.
    But he's not a pure "abolitionist". He's for keeping murderers and other certain criminals in jail. Thus the word scares people who may agree 60-90% with him away.

  10. #30
    ADT seems like you are definitely for more criminal justice reform than anything else?

  11. #31
    Quote Originally Posted by RJKarl View Post
    But he's not a pure "abolitionist". He's for keeping murderers and other certain criminals in jail. Thus the word scares people who may agree 60-90% with him away.
    Why are you, someone who clearly knows fuck all about abolition, telling me that I'm not a pure "abolitionist?" And why are you putting words in my mouth? Do you have a link to this answer?

  12. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by RJKarl View Post
    But he's not a pure "abolitionist". He's for keeping murderers and other certain criminals in jail. Thus the word scares people who may agree 60-90% with him away.
    I missed where he posted that. Can you quote or link to the post?

    I consider myself to be a prison abolitionist, but will freely admit that I don't do any sort of organizing, activism, or research on issues in this area. I'm invested purely from an ideological standpoint, so take whatever I write with a grain of salt.

    My understanding is that there are institutional configurations that aren't necessarily "prison" and methods of containment that are different than "incarceration" that can handle people who commit violent crimes. I don't have the most creative policy imagination and so I personally have no idea what that looks like. There are plenty of folks who have thought about these issues, though, if you or other detractors on here actually want to learn more about this political perspective.

    The biggest impediment to prison abolitionism (and abolitionist movements more generally) is that it is a radical movement and revolutionary ideology. Abolitionists aren't reformist because reformists want to reform the existing system. A radical politics is not interested in reforming the system as much as creating and installing a new system. The system itself - here, systems of mass incarceration or more recently "mass misdemeanor" - is the problem and it must be replaced in full by a new system, a new justificatory ideology, and a new apparatus (in the Althusserian sense of the word).
    Last edited by Strickland33; 01-14-2019 at 09:32 PM.
    We're going to be good again.

  13. #33
    Quote Originally Posted by Louis Gossett Jr View Post
    ADT seems like you are definitely for more criminal justice reform than anything else?
    Yes, in many aspects. Aggressive, progressive reform.

  14. #34
    Quote Originally Posted by BiffTannen View Post
    I'd open every cell in Attica send em to Africa.
    Everyone should read Blood in the Water. Love that book.

  15. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by MHBDemon View Post
    Jesus, you are insufferable. People that are socialists shouldn't use the word socialists. We hear the same tired argument from boomers that show up to our medicare for all organizing events. If you don't agree with our politics, then fuck off, but don't tell us what to call ourselves.

    So back to your post, what will be hard to pass?

    "using the term abolition will harm the process." What process?

    Who is the opposition?
    Lol a Bernie bro attacking a hill dawg

    Is your cortex fully formed

    Your generation will be the end of America
    Last edited by marquee moon; 01-14-2019 at 10:06 PM.

  16. #36
    we are talking about the tiny federal prison population

  17. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by MHBDemon View Post
    I don't think any police officers should be proud of their "public service" because I don't believe the institution of policing as a public service should exist.
    Quote Originally Posted by AsesinoDeTortugas View Post
    Youíve completely lost me with this one, Clark.
    Quote Originally Posted by Shooshmoo View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by AsesinoDeTortugas View Post
    Yes, in many aspects. Aggressive, progressive reform.
    So it seems like ADT, Shoo disagree with my anti-cop take, so let's talk about it?

    Here is the American Public Health Association:

    Physical and psychological violence that is structurally-mediated by the system of law enforcement results in deaths, injuries, trauma, and stress which disproportionately affect marginalized populations (e.g., people of color, immigrants, individuals experiencing houselessness, people with disabilities, the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Trans and Queer (LGBTQ) community, individuals with mental illness, people who use drugs, and sex workers). Among other factors, the misuse of policies intended to protect law enforcement agencies have enabled limited accountability for these harms. Further, certain regulations (e.g., anti-immigrant legislation, policies associated with the war on drugs, and the criminalization of sex work and activities associated with houselessness) have promoted and intensified violence by law enforcement toward marginalized populations. While interventions for improving policing quality to reduce violence (e.g., community-oriented policing, training, body/dashboard-mounted cameras, and conducted electrical weapons) have been implemented, empirical evidence suggests notable limitations. Importantly, these approaches also lack an upstream, primary prevention public health frame. A public health strategy that centers community safety and prevents law enforcement violence should favor community-built and community-based solutions. The American Public Health Association (APHA) recommends the following actions by federal, state, tribal, and local authorities: (1) eliminate policies and practices that facilitate disproportionate violence against specific populations (including laws criminalizing these populations); (2) institute robust law enforcement accountability measures; (3) increase investment in promoting racial and economic equity to address social determinants of health; (4) implement community-based alternatives to addressing harms and preventing trauma; and (5) work with public health officials to comprehensively document law enforcement contact, violence, and injuries.
    I think 1, 3, and 4, especially are abolitionist demands.

    More:

    Law enforcement violence is a critical public health issue. Consistent with domains of violence defined by the World Health Organization (WHO), law enforcement violence has been conceptualized to include physical, psychological, and sexual violence as well as neglect (i.e., failure to aid) [1-3]. While all forms of violence are important to consider and have been shown to correlate with poor mental health outcomes in at least one study [1], this statement focuses on physical and psychological violence.

    According to The Counted (a UK-based website, which operated from 2015 to 2016 and provided the most timely, comprehensive source of U.S. data at the time) [4-6], at least 1,091 individuals were killed by law enforcement officers in the United States in 2016 [7]. These deaths in 2016 amounted to 54,754 years of life lost [8]. Based on data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, there were 76,440 non-fatal injuries due to legal intervention in 2016 [9]. At least 28 serious injuries were inflicted on students between 2010 and 2015 by school-based law enforcement officers [10]. The CDC estimates that the overall cost of fatal and non-fatal injuries by law enforcement reported in 2010, including medical costs and work lost, was $1.8 billion [11]. Legal scholars describe a clear connection between increased exposure to stops and an elevated risk of death or physical harm by law enforcement officers [12].

    Inappropriate stops by law enforcement are one form of psychological violence with serious implications for public health [1, 2]. Even in the absence of physical violence, several studies have found that stops perceived as unfair, discriminatory, or intrusive are associated with adverse mental health outcomes, including symptoms of anxiety, depression and posttraumatic stress disorder [1, 13, 14]. Additionally, one study found neighborhood-level frisk and use of force was linked with elevated levels of psychological distress among men who live in these neighborhoods [15]. In two large surveys, Black individuals were more likely than white individuals to report stress as a result of encounters with police [13, 14] Ė a concern given evidence of an association between stress due to perceived racial discrimination and risk factors for chronic disease and early mortality [16]. A nationally representative study found an association between death of Black individuals due to legal intervention with subsequent poor mental health among Black adults living in the same state [17].
    Y'all can tell me all day how I live in a "fantasy world." And maybe there is something to that. I live in a world, where twice in recent history, police officers have given baseball cards to my kids. The first time, my spouse was pulled over for speeding, and the cop gave my kids Royals cards. Then this year at school, there were officers giving out baseball cards in front of the elementary school. And it's not fucking lost on me that a couple zip codes over, kids no different than mine are criminalized when they show up to school for the same behavior my kids will engage in. That over in KCK, the current police chief was literal partners with this shitbag, who worked on the force for 35 years and got up to captain:

    With the full knowledge of KCKPD supervisors, including his former partner, current KCKPD police chief Terry Zeigler, Golubski forced his victims to submit to sexual acts, through physical force or with threats of arrest or harm to them or their loved ones. He also manipulated his victims by promising favors, like clearing arrest warrants, or by providing illegal drugs to those who were addicted. Golubskiís practice was to gain leverage over vulnerable women and force them to provide fabricated information that he would use to close cases without any proper investigation. Throughout the community, and among the women he manipulated, Golubski had a reputation for being corrupt and for ďputting cases on people.Ē
    So no one in the KCK police department knew about this guy for 35 years? And you want to tell me police provide a "legitimate" public service?

    All those St. Louis cops are just totally oblivious to all the racism in their department?

    So I'll ask, what fantasy world do y'all live in?

  18. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strickland33 View Post
    I missed where he posted that. Can you quote or link to the post?

    I consider myself to be a prison abolitionist, but will freely admit that I don't do any sort of organizing, activism, or research on issues in this area. I'm invested purely from an ideological standpoint, so take whatever I write with a grain of salt.

    My understanding is that there are institutional configurations that aren't necessarily "prison" and methods of containment that are different than "incarceration" that can handle people who commit violent crimes. I don't have the most creative policy imagination and so I personally have no idea what that looks like. There are plenty of folks who have thought about these issues, though, if you or other detractors on here actually want to learn more about this political perspective.

    The biggest impediment to prison abolitionism (and abolitionist movements more generally) is that it is a radical movement and revolutionary ideology. Abolitionists aren't reformist because reformists want to reform the existing system. A radical politics is not interested in reforming the system as much as creating and installing a new system. The system itself - here, systems of mass incarceration or more recently "mass misdemeanor" - is the problem and it must be replaced in full by a new system, a new justificatory ideology, and a new apparatus (in the Althusserian sense of the word).
    You are arguing semantics rather than the use of a specific, very defined word. If you aren't going allow murderers, rapists and others to be free, whether you call it jail, prison or anything else, they are being held away from the innocent populace. Thus, you haven't abolished holding certain people in spaces or facilities.

    As I mentioned earlier, Novas were good cars for the period and for the Central and South American market, but because they were called Nova, very few were sold. People couldn't get around the name. This has happened with other products throughout the years.

    Again, I'm not saying the goal is wrong. I'm saying the naming of it is. By choosing the wrong name when you might have momentum, you can delay or deny the results you desire.

    When you are trying to do something this radical (and needed), you put your entire movement at risk due to have a terrible name. Or even one that takes a lot of description. I don't know what that name is, but I do know calling it "abolition" does all but guarantee its failure.

  19. #39
    I think youíve made your point that you donít like the name. Maybe just move on?

  20. #40
    ok cool. you don't like the name. Do you have anything more substantive?

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