It’s hard to ignore a revolution when it’s literally at your doorstep every single day and sometimes also burns down your Wendy’s or Targets. And really should we be that mad that a Wendy’s was burned down? We should’ve done that a long time ago, when we found out that Wendy wasn’t even a real red-head!
This massive movement we are seeing in our society stems from another Black Man that was murdered by the police. Right now there are calls to “Defund the Police” which has become a very controversial statement. Some folks fear the notion of defunding the police and radically changing the Criminal Justice & Law Enforcement systems. So they bring up the idea of Reform.
Recently the great Master Reformer, Joe Biden addressed this in a church, claiming that cops should aim for the leg. You guys remember when Jesus proclaimed from upon high “Sweep the leg! Then deliver justice!” So right now reforming the police is to maim citizens and leave them even more defenseless to police violence, or put them into medical debt.
Joe Biden is the kind of fisherman that doesn’t catch & release fish. But rather, he catches the fish, throws it back in the water with the hook attached and then drags around the lake for a few hours. That’s reformed fishing. That’ll punish that fish for the crime of, you know, bein’ a fish!
It’s not just Biden, the entire Establishment is guilty of fake reforms. The Republicans just stay silent on everything or have awful points of view, like “Maybe that person just shouldn’t be black!” The Republicans on a daily basis are proof that science is important and evolution isn’t for everyone. Some people are still neanderthals. Turns out they really didn’t go extinct, they just ran for office.
The Democrat’s Police Reform Bill went as far as to say chokeholds should be banned! No shit! Why were they a part of the training to begin with? That’s like coffee shops having a rule that says “Don’t dunk your genitals in the customers drinks!” And besides the NYPD banned chokeholds, but Daniel Pantaleo is still free after choking Eric Garner to death over absolutely nothing! Banning chokeholds is common sense! You shouldn’t get the Nobel peace prize for exhibiting basic kindergarten rules! These are bread crumbs, not reforms!
To really understand why reforming the police is an unviable option we have to look into the history of the police itself. The history of the police shows us for a fact that policing is a system designed for violence, particularly to keep the working class oppressed. It uses racism as its motivator.
Back in 1704, the Carolina colony started using deputized vigilantes as slave patrols to ensure that runaway slaves wouldn’t get far. This was done to help maintain economic order and assist wealthy landowners. And these deputized vigilantes were paid and in charge of recovering and punishing slaves. They felt justified because slaves were looked at as property not people.
This was basically like if Bruce Wayne decided to hire some unemployed factory workers in Gotham City, dressed them up as Batman and then sent them out to beat the shit out of other poor people, you know because he was sad and had to protect that wealth, because that’s the only way he feels love.
By the 1780s, Charleston, SC introduced a paramilitary force to control slaves. And at this point, the country was approaching industrialization and there was a general consensus that slavery was a concerning practice. I mean nobody stopped using slaves for like another 100 years, but a lot people were like “Boy this doesn’t feel right, but…you know, the economy. So carry on!” Sound familiar?
So fast forward to the 20th century, when we see cops protecting pipelines, corporations and gaudy mascots of a criminal economic system, they’re literally doing what their job was originated to be. When they say protect and serve, they mean protect the economy and serve the wealthy. Their job is more about protecting inanimate object and fictional things than it is about serving their community, because that’s their heritage.
And don’t worry the Yankees weren’t innocent in all this either. In New England there were “Indian Constables” who policed Native Americans. [SC 6] More than that they used privatized police forces to break strikes which the establishment and the economic elites called “rioting”. They were described as “Centralized body of men…legally authorized to use force to maintain order, it also provided the illusion that this order was being maintained under the rule of law, not at the whim of economic power”
These were the Pinkertons that were often hired in the 17 & 1800s to attack strikers with force to maintain order. Most of them were poor, out of work men that were either trying feed their families or get an education. This is also how the military industrial complex operates today. These guys were used to break strikes in Chicago, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and throughout the country and their conflicts almost always ended violently.
Fast forward to the 20th century, and you see American Police using chemical weapons that are banned by Geneva Conventions to maintain order. Tear gas is so awful that even the American Military won’t use it. Do you understand the level of psychopathy you have to achieve to use a weapon the American Military won’t use?! Those guys drone bombed a wedding and blamed the bride & groom! The cops feel justified because they’ve manufactured reasons to uphold order. They created their own boogeymen out of non-violent protests! To them the chants, songs, signs all have rhythm and as Gloria Estefan said “The Rhythm is gonna get you”
And it’s not that we haven’t tried real reform. And I’m not talking about going like legs like Jesus. In 1968 Police Chief Victor Cizanckas tried to changed the way people looked at the Menlo Park PD in California. He practiced some alternative ways of making the police look less aggressive. So not only was he hiring folks from more empathetic practices, but also removed the hardened look of the cops by changing the uniform.
Chief Cizanckas decided to go with a green Blazer with a patch instead of what we see today which is basically RoboCop on Casual Friday. Citizens were put at ease by the cops in Blazers, but some of them didn’t get recognize them as cops. So the officers were very upset about this. Their complaint was that they look like nerds and it’s a long know fact that cops have destroy nerds!
It’s called a transition. Like puberty. You don’t just go from adolescence to a fully functioning adult. We got through this awkward transition with includes random boners, random boob growth, pimples, strange smells, an array of vocal ranges and so many hormones. And it can be said that some people get stuck there and never really grow out of this phase. You know the people that peak in high school and then become police officers because they’re cool.
Now Cizanckas’ reformation was so wildly unpopular with cops, that 75% of the Menlo Park PD quit. Soon after he was transferred to Stanford, CT. The Blazers didn’t make the cops less violent. It didn’t stop them from brutalizing citizens, but rather just appear as if they don’t, because they looked like nerds. It looked like they were going to sell you a timeshare. If the Menlo Park PD did brutalize a protester, people would be confused if it was a cop or a HR rep!
Former Presidential Candidate Andrew Yang suggested that we change the name to the Minneapolis Police Department to Minneapolis Guardians. So now when the violent cops beat you they can claim they’re guarding from yourself! [COVER 3] Reform can’t happen from within because they will get rid of the reformers, just like they did with chief Cizanckas. Revolutionary ideas are harder to ignore.
But more than that you can’t reform a system that is still as racist as its origins. As recent as 2017, Police Departments in cities like Sacramento and Portland, OR have been using white supremacist and neo-Nazi groups to help quell anti-racist protests! And after the Trump Inauguration, activists were put on trial for “inciting violence”! Look at the difference in treatment of the lockdown protesters with guns that showed up on the Capitol steps versus the calls for respecting Black lives! The Slave Patrol lives on and has no intention of reforming its ways because it is and will continue to be the vigilantes hired by the rich to protect their stuff.
So we go to the next solution; Defunding the Police and pushing community driven efforts to eliminate state sponsored violence in black, brown and low income communities. The eventuality is that we’d see communities that don’t need any police at all! This is why the Police are so scared of the term “Defund the Police!”
Right now, the LAPD’s budget is $1.8 BILLION, NYPD’s budget is $6 BILLION, and Philly spends close to a billion dollars on their police. There are plenty of Mayors that are heeding the call to defund their police but are taking half hearted measures. Jacob Frey of Minneapolis, the city that sparked the movement said he doesn’t support defunding the police. The Citizens & City Council has decided otherwise.
In Los Angeles the mayor said he was ready to cut $150 million of the $1.8 BILLION budget, which would leave about $1.78 BILLION in their budget. Let’s remember that a billion is a 100, 100 millions. It’s an exponentially larger than a million. This is like putting out a skyscraper on fire with a water pistol, while the plastic is melting from all the heat. BLM LA called to drop the budget from 44% to 5.7%. That means the LAPD Police Budget would go down to $100 million, which is an astronomical amount of money! It’s about as much money that Jeff Bezos makes when he farts.
To understand the justification of why cities would give 44% or more of their budgets to the police departments, we have to go back to the 1960s. Democratic President Lyndon B. Johnson started a War on Crime which was fully engaged by Republican President Paranoia Richard Marion Nixon.
Nixon ran on Law & Order promising to wage war on Drugs, Crime and of course Black People – also puppies! So the cops had to be more militarized if they are fighting a war! So they manufactured fear and created legislation to give surplus military gear to cops. Almost like they redistributed the military gear. Ah yes, America’s greatest socialist secret, the military!
Sidebar: It’s important to note that LBJ a Democrat, passed the Crime war over to Nixon. Just like Bush passed 2 wars to Obama who made it into 7 wars and boy howdy is Trump trying to make it 14. Obama also passed on the immigrant detention centers and an expansive surveillance programs over to Trump. This is how each President lets go of their party affiliation to make sure that people remain subservient. Another reason why reform isn’t the answer.
Since the 60s, the Police has been getting more and more militarized despite the fact most of the calls they answer are for non-violent, non-emergency calls. But the cops look at those as life or death, because they’re convinced it’s a war against the populace. To the police, everyone is high, armed, and also a possibly a Communist Dragon in disguise. And this militarization mixed with a paranoid war, leads to cops killing more innocent people, particularly those with same skin complexion as Jesus, if not darker. Don’t forget, that Pontus Pilot was a cop!
This use of militarized force makes sense! When you’re a child and you get a new toy, what’s the first thing you do? Take it out of the box and play with it immediately! You don’t put it on a shelf and look for a reasonable time to play with it! And then you want all your friends to have these toys too so you can all play with them. That’s what the cops are doing with their over militarized equipment, they’re children playing with deadly toys given to them by their psychopath parents…aka the government.
As Kamau Walton, Philly Member of Critical Resistance says “At a drop of a dime, they can find money for uber-militarized tanks and fly helicopters all over the city and shoot rubber bullets, but we can’t put people in houses?” It’s not that they can’t, it’s that they won’t. So Defunding the police takes away their death toys lets we the people rebuild our communities and take care of them without waging a manufactured war on OUR streets!
Defunding the police will mean we start funding and rethinking the role of mental health, education, mediation, and basic needs in every American community. So instead of the cops getting called on a drunk man asleep at the drive through, we call the paramedics and his friend. Instead of the cops getting called for a counterfeit bill, we call a fund that helps businesses take care of this sort of thing. Domestic disputes are taken care of by mediators with books instead of guys with tanks. We can heal our communities and keeping building a better future.
We’d completely restructure our society, and yes it means we have go through a transition phase with boners and boob growth, but if it means we look at these so called crimes under the lens of compassion, instead of the brute force of law & order, I’m all for a few awkward years.
Something else we see in this Revolutionary world of ours is the term ACAB, which some people might think means one cab. And those same people are very confused about why this phrase is seen at all the protests. But ACAB is an acronym for “All Cops Are Bastards”. I know some of you are asking, “But how can that be Krish? There have to be some good cops out there?” A few years ago, I would have agreed with you. In fact I even wrote a bit about it!
But these so called “good cops” are removed from the system. First and foremost if people applying to become a cop score too high on IQ or Empathy tests they don’t get into the academy. The theory here is that being a police officer is a stressful job and if these cops are too nice they won’t be able to do the job. And remember the job is to protect and serve the interests of the oligarchy.
If you’re Empathetic or have a decent IQ you might try to talk to the commoner, which to the policing system is clinically insane. But there’s tons of high stress jobs. Nurses and doctors have to deal with irate patients and they don’t overdose people who stick remotes up their butts. Teachers have to deal with kids asking “Why” every 43 seconds and we don’t see stories of kinder-gardeners getting shot every day! Fuck, have you tried to be a comedian that talks about social issues in at a corporate comedy club lately? And yet under the stress of not getting paid my weight in Chicken Tenders, I have not choked out Billy Bob wearing his favorite racist Jeff Dunham T-Shirt and I nailed the drink specials!
Cops are supposed to be harden, robotic, warriors patrolling the streets that don’t understand them! They’re like an Emo Kid on Steroids! They’re listening My Chemical Romance while bench-pressing to the thoughts of how much their dads don’t love them. There’s also no psychological support for cops. The President of the Philadelphia Fraternal Order of Police said their therapy was a shot and beer! Great, now we have to deal with Drunk cops either trying to kill us or date us!
And the cops that do push back against their own department’s violence get fired or threatened. If there were good cops in the system they would march along side the protesters and use their shield to protect the people. These cops that stay silent out of fear wind up being complicit to the murderous brutality of the justice system. So the only they can do is leave the force and become better and more engaged members of their community!
Now I know some of you thinking, “But Krish, some of them kneeled with protesters, so that’s gotta be a sign that they’re good cops!” That’s what we in the revolution call “Copaganda”. A day later these cops are violently attacking protesters on the same grounds they feigned their solidarity! [FTP 8] You have people like Sheriff Swanson in Flint, MI who put their batons down for the people. [FTP 9]
Turning a Protest into a Parade devalues what the protest actually is! It’s a protest bro! You see any fuckin’ Mickey Mouse balloons or floats with Disney princesses? No, then it’s a protests and you best recognize or your precinct could be the next Wendy’s! Cops hugging people sounds like code for illegal chokehold. Sheriff Swanson is a Prison Profiteer with a sweet Mid-Westerner accent! [FTP 10]
In the world of therapy when you’re in an abusive relationship there’s a term called ‘bread-crumbing’ that’s used to describe how abusers want praise for doing the smallest and menial of tasks. Like a gold star for NOT setting the kitchen ablaze on purpose. In reality, that’s just something we shouldn’t do! These cops are doing the bear minimum by not firing projectiles at protesters for like an hour and they want everyone to love and praise them for it. So there are no good cops when it comes to Copandanga Bread-crumbs.
Copaganda is also in the way the media portrays cops in our society. In the media cops are portrayed to be cool and hilarious where they engage in hijinks while keeping us safe from us! You have cops like Axel Foley and John McClain, the cast of Brooklyn 99 who are badasses with heart!
Cops even co-opted the Punisher, who’s a comic book character that was created out of the frustration regarding the corruption and ineptitude of law enforcement. They turned his logo of the skull into a symbol for the Thin Blue Line, which also what you call a cop’s penis. Frank Castle has beat the shit out of cops because they’re bad people abusing their powers. The creator of the Punisher was so upset about the bastardization of his logo by these true bastards that he came up with a line of new logos supporting the Black Lives Matter movement, which Frank 100% would!
There was only one instance when cops pushed back against their masters. It was during the one and only Police Strike in Boston in 1919! In 1919 the Police starting pay was $2/day and hadn’t increased in 60 years! These are Slave Patrol wages! And that was unfair, because by 1919 they were harassing black people and the working class at a much higher rate! They worked 7 days a week, 72-98 hours/week and had to stay in station houses with little sanitation, baths, beds or toilets.
Now the way this worked was the Governor of Massachusetts appointed a Commissioner but the Mayor was in charge of the budgets. So successes were credited to the Governor and the failures scapegoated to the Mayor. In June of 1919 when the AFL suggested the police unionize the Commissioner under order of Governor Calvin Coolidge, declined them. He stated they were “state officers, not employees”. Translation: “You our bitch now!”
By August, the 8 officers that tried to unionize were fired and Coolidge was about to pass legislation that would make it illegal for government employees to unionize. A banker said the governor should recognize the union as long as they promise not to strike. 4 out of 5 Boston newspapers sided with the banker’s compromise. And so did 4 out 5 dentists. It’s unclear as to why they voiced their opinion but good for them.
Now let’s be clear, the banker’s call to ensure the police shouldn’t strike wasn’t about solidarity, but it was about protecting his wealth. He wanted the cops to get paid more so they’d protect him when the people came for what was rightfully theirs. Only 1 out of 5 Dentists saw that.
Coolidge rejected the compromise and delegitimized the police union. So the cops got together and voted to see if they should strike. Out of 1100 members only 2 objected. On September 9, 1919 at 5:45pm, 72% of the Boston Police didn’t report for duty. Coolidge panicked and called in the Metro Park PD and over half of them refused to participate in solidarity with the Boston cops.
During the first night with no cops, one cigar store got busted into, there were a few purse snatches but the rest of time people were kinda just partying. There was music being played, drinks to be had, outdoor gambling, this was the first time someone wore a barrel as an outfit. People were violating some cardinal rules, like going into stores with NO shoes or shirts and still getting service! The establishment saw this as mayhem! “There will not be fun unless the state mandates your fun with specific guidelines and all the correct paperwork is filed”
So the Mayor panics and not only calls for the State Guard to be activated but ALSO deputized Harvard Students to go on patrol as volunteers. The children that had become police couldn’t handle the mobs of people who saw them as enemies. It turns out you can’t tell people to go home by quoting Shakespeare at them; it only pisses them off.
The Guardsmen had to be called in to save the children and then Coolidge activated 5000 more guardsmen who used live rounds against civilians in Boston! Fortunately only 9 people were killed, which was a bummer for the war machine. They would’ve preferred double digits on that death toll. Businesses had boarded up and closed early or taken up arms themselves. Samuel Gompers of the AFL reached out to Coolidge urging him to reinstate the officers and open up negotiations. Coolidge said no, because you know…Russia.
By the fourth day, the guard crushed the strike with force. The police officers remained fired and were replaced by out of work World War 1 veterans with untreated PTSD. They would’ve been better off with the Harvard kids! The new cops got a pay increase, better hours, benefits and clean living quarters; All the things the striking cops were asking for. It’s not that state can’t afford to improve our lives, it’s that they wouldn’t!
This was a message to the police that they are the slaves of the state. So there are no good cops because their masters won’t allow them to exist in the force. So because of all that All Cops Are, in fact, Bastards. As my friend Eleanor Goldfield points out, “Indeed when we say “All Cops Are Bastards”, we do not mean that all people go into policing want to harm the public but rather that the institution of police ultimately harms the public. It’s in their DNA”.
In 1919 it became illegal for police to unionize, until the powers that be saw that it would be highly beneficial to them. Today there are several union organizers that want the AFL-CIO to remove the Police Union’s affiliation with them. They say “police unions serve the interests of police forces as an arm of the state, and not the interests of police as laborers.”
Real Unions are the key to pushing back against the overpowered, over-funded, corrupt, crybabies in the Police Unions. Real Unions aren’t about membership, but about solidarity with the working class and improving the lives of workers while fighting for social justice. There’s a long standing history of Unions standing up for racial justice, because REAL Unions stand up all of the working class regardless of skin color, gender, creed, religion, sexuality or whether you want to wear a barrel as suit!
Police Unions on the other hand have raised funds for killer cops like Darren Wilson, who murdered Mike Brown, Daniel Pantaleo, who murdered Eric Garner and several others. They don’t represent the people, because the police don’t represent us. But with leaders from the Transport Unions standing with their workers who refuse to bus protesters to prison or cops down to protest means we can use our solidarity as a strength to push back against the Bastard Cops and amplify the Defund movement.
So why do officers like Derek Chauvin, Darren Wilson, Daniel Pantaleo think they can murder with impunity? Because they know their masters will protect them, because they protect their owners’ stuff. The police were never created to protect and serve the masses they were created to protect the serve the masters! But we’ve decided that we’ve had enough of this lop-sided manufactured war being waged on us. There is no reforming systems that built off inequality & bastardism. So we can work to create new ones that built out of logic, compassion and have equality at its core.
Krish Mohan is a socially conscious, Indian standup comedian and writer who regularly tours the country. He performs at small theaters, bars, comedy clubs, colleges, DIY and house venues. With his quirky attitude, charming personality, and intelligent humor, Krish captivates and engages audiences of all backgrounds, tackling hot button topics like race, religion, war, immigration, while adding an optimistic, philosophical & sociological twist!