As a public service, I am reproducing below the splendid essay by Becky Akers entitled "Police: An Army By Any Other Name." That essay was published by The New American on February 15 and lasted nearly a day before the editorial collective purged it from the website.
We've previously examined several other examples of Orwellian "rectification" on the part of the crepuscular authoritarians running the JBS; indeed, archiving specimens of that kind is one of the primary purposes of this site. I'm tempted to say that this is done in the hope of keeping JBS management honest, but I recognize that this would avail nothing, given that the people we're discussing are incurably aversive to honesty.
This compelling essay is irrefutable. It is also incompatible with Appleton's revived "Support Your Local Police" campaign, which is founded on the idea that local police are to be sustained and defended against criticism of any kind, irrespective of the abuses they commit against the public.
Here is the relevant directive from the SYLP "Startup Manual":
"The local police are not your enemy. Your committee is not here to attack them, blame them for violating the Constitution or your civil liberties because they are enforcing a measure of the Patriot Act or conducting a joint Federal and State anti-terror drill. Those are federal issues, which the local police in some cases may have already have little to no say if they are to continue receiving their additional Homeland Security funds, new equipment and weaponry.... We urge all responsible citizens in this community to work with us to ...[s]upport our local police in the performance of their duties [and] oppose all harassment or interference with law enforcement personnel as they carry out their assigned tasks.... [We must accept] our responsibilities to our local police, to defend them against unjust attacks, make them proud and secure in their vital profession, and to offer them our support in word and deed wherever possible." (Emphasis added.)
|What readers looking for the Akers piece saw on February 16.|
For the decrepit commissars running the JBS, when fact and principle collide with Upper Management's party line, it is the latter that must prevail. So Becky Akers' article was scrubbed from TNA's website.
The last time something like this happened was in the Summer of 2006, when I published a piece explaining how the immigration issue was being used to expand the police state. That essay was taken down within a few hours, and Alan Scholl called me to threaten my job -- not because anything I had written was untrue (he made it clear that the truth was "not the issue"), but because it conflicted with the "corporate decision" to "ride the wave" of the immigration issue, at whatever cost to the truth.
Becky Akers brilliantly documents where the "wave" Alan referred to has taken our country. Appleton's decision to consign that essay to the Memory Hole demonstrates, beyond serious dispute, that the poseurs running the JBS are craven, weak-bladdered collaborators.
Written by Becky Akers - New American
Wednesday, 15 February 2012 12:33
States and localities across the country are wielding the Tenth Amendment against the heinous NDAA of 2012, promising to nullify its anti-constitutional threat of “indefinitely detaining” us. For example, “commissioners” in Kansas’ Cherokee County “may vote on a resolution condemning sectionsof the NDAA as a violation of several provisions in the U.S. Constitution … The proposed resolution notes that the military policing of citizens ‘is repugnant to a free society.’”Actually, policing is repugnant to a free society. Exactly who carries out such tyranny, whether “police forces” or an army, is largely a matter of semantics. But in dumbed-down America, propaganda and a deft change in terminology often fool the sheeple.Police are nothing less than soldiers a country’s rulers turn loose on its taxpayers. Such troops have seldom been armed as heavily as those sent against external enemies, but America’s increasingly “militarized” cops flout that rule of thumb. And that brings us full circle, because prior to the nineteenth century, regular armies “policed” cities.One fabled incident from America’s colonial history illustrates this. In 1770, the British Army’s policing of a town in Massachusetts culminated in the Boston Massacre.
The Army’s 19 months of invasion — sorry, policing there before the Massacre had been typical. Nor was Boston the only city so cursed. At home in England, riots regularly rocked eighteenth-century London. And the government just as regularly sicced its enforcers on the dissidents. Any army’s raison d’etre is to impose rulers’ whims on those refusing to obey. It mattered not whether the rebels were French cavalry, Prussian cannoneers or beleaguered British citizens whose taxes financed the infantry shooting at them.
And so the government sent troops to help Customs rob the colonists. That remains cops’ chief function today. They ticket drivers while arresting and delivering other victims to the State so it can fine them or feed them to the prison-industrial complex — all while burbling that this somehow “protects” us.
Adamantly refuting that claim are the corpses littering cops’ wake. Though the British Army in Boston slaughtered only 5 people in the “Massacre,” police kill an average of about 200 people every year — and that counts only the ones who expire “in custody,” not the dozens more who die as innocent bystanders or because police bust down the wrong door, and the householder, defending himself from what he assumes is a burglary, succumbs to a hail of “official” bullets.
Adding insult to fatal injury, Our Rulers dub these unfortunates “Justifiable Homicides.” Though we are the geese laying Leviathan’s golden eggs, the beast does not mourn our deaths. Indeed, the U.S. Department of [In]Justice decrees that "the use of deadly force against a police officer is almost never justified, while the use of deadly force by police often is... [K]illings by police are referred to as ‘justifiable homicides,’ and the persons that police kill are referred to as ‘felons.’ " Yep, I’m dizzy, too, from such risibly circular “reasoning.”
How did we arrive at such a sorry and despotic pass? One of the primary causes is the State’s cynical domestication of its armed forces. Like Cherokee County’s commissioners, most Americans still fear an army’s patrolling them. But they drop their wariness when Leviathan renames that army “police department.” Yet if we restrict the military to mere arrests as we do cops, what substantive difference is there?
Armies patrolling civilians became “police” thanks to a British politician named Robert Peel. Charged with calming Ireland when its residents rebelled against their British overlords in the early nineteenth century, Peel proposed that “Peace Preservation Police” rather than Redcoats suppress dissent. The “Peace Preservers” succeeded at controlling the Irish so well that Peel advocated the same remedy a decade later, this time to quell unrest in England.
Peel fussed endlessly about the non-existent differences between “police” and the army they replaced. He urged his recruits to think of themselves as part of the community, and vice versa: “The police are the public and the public are the police; the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties which are incumbent on every citizen in the interest of community welfare and existence.” He never explained how “communities” had not only existed but flourished for millennia without bullies bossing them.
Nations world-wide immediately grasped the indispensability of Peel’s “solution” to taxpayers’ dissatisfaction with the government their money buys. Here was a “force” drawn from their own ranks rather than the prisons and poverty from which armies traditionally drafted men, friends and family whom neighbors would accept as they spied on and fined them while continually assuring them it was for their own good.
By 1853, “bobbies,” as the British called them in Peel’s honor when they weren’t employing far more Anglo-Saxon epithets, had infiltrated America. Apparently, their extreme benefit to the State outweighed their evisceration of the Third Amendment’s spirit. New York City was the first to field this army-by-another-name; Philadelphia in 1856 and Boston in 1859 quickly followed.
Today cops reign supreme in the land of the free. Every city and town, regardless of how large or small, supports a police force; even rural areas and vast stretches of wilderness boast some sort of armed guards protecting the State and its interests from us.
Ideally, Americans would shuck off all this policing (which is distinct from enforcing the law: naturally, we would still defend ourselves from the few real criminals that curse any society, though we’d do so through private resources, not Leviathan’s). But until that halcyon day arrives, we must at a minimum bar the Feds from meddling with police forces. Citizens could then choose to leave areas where cops oppress them in favor of freer ones.
As a bonus, that might set Robert Peel spinning in his grave.
A commenter inquired:
Interesting article, but I would be interested to know your plan for policing our citizens through "private resources". You have outlined your objections and criticisms of the police, but what is the solution. Please write another detailed article about your plan for private policing.
Becky Akers replied:
Mr. Archer, you’ve asked a question with a very long answer – so long it has required books from anarchic thinkers who provide us with far better solutions than the State ever could.
Here are a few things to keep in mind:
1) There are actually very few “criminals” out there (except the ones in elective or appointed office!). Most of the folks the US incarcerates are actually political prisoners, ie, they have disobeyed some bureaucrat’s whim rather than stealing from, raping, kidnapping or killing us. For instance, anyone imprisoned on charges of owning or selling drugs Our Rulers don’t like hasn’t harmed you or me in any way (we may disapprove of his choices, but that doesn’t mean he’s harmed us). In other words, government creates most “crime” by its criminalizing of innocuous behavior.
2) In a free society, there would be no impediments to a citizen’s arming himself. Rates of theft, rape, kidnapping, and murder all plummet when people bear arms. Ditto for other protections, such as “The Club” for cars or technology that would allow private companies (not cops) to trace the location of stolen items: I recently read about one guy who located an iPad that the TSA stole from him this way.
3) Despite these two considerations, sometimes a thief, rapist, kidnapper or murderer will succeed in claiming a victim. The State’s “enforcement” concentrates on punishing the criminal – not on restoring the victim. Private resources (which a scholar named Bruce Benson has studied and written about in detail: here’s a review of one of his books that mentions several of the methods -- http://www.thefreemanonline.or...ce-benson/ -- and here are more of his articles http://www.google.com/cse?cx=0...sc.q=Bruce Benson&gsc.page=1) would turn that around and make restitution to the victim (or family) the primary focus.
Real, actual crime is a tragedy that often ruins lives. The State does everything it can to make that horrific situation much worse. Even if Constitutional considerations don’t move us to evict government from policing, simple compassion for the victims should.