Let’s be clear, the Police are waging war against us.
Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz wrote in her book “An Indigenous People’s History of the United States” that the identity of America was that of Total-war, which is academic speak for, “America is that asshole bully that will call off the fight when they’re losing, but then sucker punch you when you try to help them up.” That’s right, America is the bad kids in Cobra Kai, just all sweeping the leg and beating the shit out of you in an alley, but when other people are around they act squeaky clean as they can, and blame you for bleeding from your own fucking face.
For clarity’s sake, a history lesson.
Despite what you may have heard, America didn’t “conquer” shit. What they did do was get their ass kicked, and often. That’s right, it may shock you to learn that proto-whites who came over and literally didn’t know how to farm (on land that was already tilled, just fucking ready to go) were also not great at fighting on land they didn’t know. So what did they do? They signed treaties with tribes, a concept that was being used by many Indigenous peoples over here for a long fucking time, and something that many tribes were experts at negotiating. (I mean, just fucking think about it, back in the day you had to negotiate with every nation around you and they all had different cultures and languages, so you had to be fucking good at negotiating.) But, the main difference between these almost-whites and Native people, is that when Native people made a treaty, THEY HONORED THE GODDAMN TREATY.
But, the paleface governments did not sign the treaties with any intention of ever honoring them, instead they used the peace to build power, poison the land, wage biological warfare, and destroy life-ways. Call the tribes naïve all you want, but who could have predicted the depravity and general lack of humanity of the future Karen’s?
Why this example you ask?
Because, the United States are expert gas lighters. As they began their underhanded and criminal warfare, they would tell the tribes that the people doing it weren’t sanctioned, or that they would deal with it, or flatly deny it and their actions. By the time the United States had made its conquest to the western part of the continent, they had found the tactic of signing treaties and then going back on them so damn successful that it was their main military strategy. They would starve out tribes and demand they sign a treaty to prevent the war that they had already begun waging. They would offer them land, food, goods, health care education and money (see: treaty rights), and then — once they had the tribe surrounded, they would allow their civilians and/or armies to slaughter the tribes with impunity. They would do this until the tribe was forced into accepting offers to be removed to other lands, with the promise that there they would be left alone. We know how this turned out.
Now, back to the cops.
Many people have written how the police were created out of slave-patrols, and this is their primary function. They have been killing and capturing Black people since their inception, often explicitly. And just as the National Guard is evolved from the militias and armies ensured by the declaration of independence to fight and kill merciless Indian savages (also, while we’re here, stop saying savage, you fucks), not much has changed. They perhaps have only gotten better at it. They are not explicit now, no–now they “don’t see color,” now they are here to “protect and serve,” and perhaps in the worst of cases, they are “submitting to an outside civilian oversight and accountability commission” and have “a commitment to diversity and equity.” (shudders)
They say these things, and they continue to kill Black and Indigenous people, and they laugh while they do it. They choke us to death in slow and casually violent ways. They let us die in police custody and call it an accident. They rape us and say we consented. They have shit eating grins while they shoot rubber bullets, tear gas and pepper spray at unarmed protestors. They shove old men and leave them bleeding on the ground to protect law and order.
And, perhaps most bone chillingly, inhumanely and grotesquely disturbingly of all, they have defined their murders of us as “justifiable” and “unjustifiable,” perhaps the single most devastating use of fucked up linguistics in modern history. One day, we will look back at this time and remember how those words struck to the core of the injustice of murder at their hands.
And then, after all this, they call our protesting a “riot.”
Far be it from me to disagree with Dr. King, but perhaps “riot” is not only the language of the unheard.
Perhaps it is the language of the oppressor, so they don’t have to say “war.”
Perhaps it is the language of the murdered.
The language of the righteous.
The language of change.
But whatever it is, don’t let them lie to you, lest you be repeating what they say as they show up at your house to protect and serve.
But hey, what do I know, most cops just talk to me in Spanish, sO i’Ll bE FIiiIIInnEEEE.
Black Lives Matter.
Black and Indigenous solidarity for collective liberation always.