We’ve had this in our drafts for a couple of weeks now while we tried to gauge whether it was appropriate to continue posting about DID, or whether we should put that on hold in favor of talking about the Black Lives Matter and abolitionist movements going on across the States and all over the world. Ultimately we’ve come to the understanding that these movements and the work we’re trying to do here go hand in hand, and it’s important that we continue talking about both simultaneously.
Police brutality is a rampant issue for all marginalized groups: black and indigenous people, non-black people of color, disabled people and the mentally ill, LGBTQ+ folks (trans people especially), etc. Some facts:
– in 35 states there are no laws preventing cops from having sex with people in their custody (NOTE: there can be no genuine consent when one party is in a position of legal authority over the other)
– at least 40% of police officers engage in domestic abuse (NOTE: this statistic is based only on what’s reported, so the actual number is much higher)
– police misconduct is incredibly widespread (over 85,000 officers in the US have been investigated or disciplined for more than 200,000 incidents of misconduct) and even when cops are found guilty they often face no real consequences, or are simply let go and hired at another precinct a few towns over
– 25% of all people killed by police are in the midst of mental health crises
– as of 2016, nearly 50% of people killed by police were disabled
– a core argument in defense of police brutality is that the job itself is dangerous; in reality, cops don’t even make the list of the top 15 most dangerous jobs in the US
– black people are 3 times more likely than white people to be killed by police, despite making up only 13% of the US population
– 99% of killings by police don’t involve the officer in question being charged
– native americans are killed by police at a higher rate than any other group (NOTE: you may have seen the acronym BIPOC as part of the BLM movement, which stands for Black and Indigenous People of Color)
– over 50% of LGBTQ+ people experience mistreatment while interacting with police
– when the NYPD went on strike, crime in the city actually went down
– police do not make our communities safer. the judicial system rarely provides justice for survivors of abuse and rape. our most vulnerable are targeted disproportionately by law enforcement, and most states have laws in place to expressly protect cops when they cause harm.
– multiple FBI investigations have shown that white supremacists are drawn to police forces
Black activists have been criticizing the institution of policing for decades, and rightfully so. If most of your familiarity with the protests comes from watching mainstream news, you’re missing a great deal; we encourage you to watch videos shared by those actually on the ground. Listen to black people talk about their own experiences. Understand that your experiences are not universal; maybe you’ve been fortunate and privileged enough to have only good experiences with police; maybe you know some cops personally and feel protective of them — that doesn’t change the reality of others’ lives.
It’s our responsibility as members of our communities — and especially for those of us who are white — to stand in solidarity with our black siblings. We have nothing if we can’t or won’t protect each other.
For the folks that primarily follow us through this blog or Facebook – our most active social media presence is on Instagram. We’ve been sharing a whole bunch of resources over there and are happy to share what we’ve compiled; shoot us an email (see our Contact page) if you’re interested. If you have questions or genuinely want to learn more we’re happy to discuss.
We stand unequivocally with the Black Lives Matter and abolitionist movements, and as we said at the beginning, it would be disingenuous for us to continue with our usual posting without discussing how these movements go hand in hand with the work we’ve been pursuing here.
~ From all of us