Police Power Under Capitalism

April 13, 2012


Is this world real? Are we so controlled by the conservative press that we are unable to analyze the real world? Are we able to unite with reality? These are not rhetorical questions. We live and think in an environment that makes the simplest questions appear conundrums. We are told that we live in the land of the free and yet we have more people in jail than any other country in the world. It is not just that this contradiction denies the concept of freedom but more importantly, it is not and cannot be discussed anywhere in this society. It is not even recognized as a question that must be addressed.

Prior to Brown v Board of Education, prisons were populated proportional to the population. After desegregation, the prisons have been used to resegregate our society and yet there is no discussion of this repressive and oppressive turn of events. In fact, it is not on the national agenda to analyze the question.

The growth industry in this country is the building of new prisons. Yet, there is no discussion of the importance of that fact in the national media. In other words, this society has accepted that segregation is “inherently unequal” in legal terms but in cultural terms is has decided to institute cultural inequality. That is why the correct term is capitalist racism. It describes the economic system that oppresses the working class in general but uses racism as a cultural system of control. African-Americans now populate the prisons, and the Latino community but the corporate executives and corporate boards of this country commit the crimes.

In this society, racism only means segregation/slavery and only those who support such institutions are “racists”. The words and attitudes of that social construct are racists. But since there are very few people who accept those concepts, the capitalist media wipes away all discussion of all other forms of racism. At present, the racism of this society is class based and that is why, we must refer to and analyze capitalism, not simply prejudice or bigotry independent of the economic system that supports and nurtures those attitudes.

In this country, police power is used to control and contain the working class, not to provide a peaceful, productive society. When Ken Lay and Art Schilling committed the crimes at Enron, the criminal system responded slowly and awkwardly. More importantly, those crimes destroyed the lives of thousands of working people. And the crimes at Enron are only the tip of the iceberg, but they are the only people who will receive any attention. But daily, working people are being severally and unnecessarily punished for crimes such as smoking weed or selling it and the national media refuses to discuss the uneven system of punishment.

It is therefore true that the liberation of the working class goes back to the war in the streets that is generally encompassed by the term police brutality. The police are working people who are daily exploited, paid too little for the work that they do. But they are charged with enforcing a criminal code that is designed to criminalize working people particularly the black community. People who destroy the lives of thousands of people, who pollute and thereby cause the sickness and death of entire communities, commit crimes that should be punished. The effect on our society is toxic and has ramifications far beyond the particular crime. Yet, the people who are punished are those who smoke the weed or sell the weed when those acts are far less toxic and the effects on our society are only felt because of the criminalization of those acts.

The Republican Party has carried out a program that has implemented this attack on the working class in general and the Black and Latino community in particular. First, it started an attack on the Democratic Party as soft on crime. But the crimes that the Democratic Party was accused of being “soft” on were not the crimes of the corporate elite which crimes are so detrimental to our society. It was the crimes within the Black community that could be used for control of that oppressed community. It instituted a program of capitalist racism by convincing a section of the working class that it would not be punished. And for the last 25 years the uneven punishment has been evident. But now with the sacking of the American treasury by the Bush II administration and the impoverishment of the working class with destruction of millions of manufacturing jobs such as has occurred at Delphi, Ford, General Motors, a new section of the working class will be subjected to control by imprisonment as their homes are confiscated by mortgage foreclosures and they turn to other means of support, the effect of uneven enforcement will become evident even to the previously privileged sections of the working class.

The Bush regime fights for the right to torture under the guise of the war against terrorism, but the real target is the American working class. It is so difficult for working people to understand this fact because they still believe the propaganda that they will not be targeted as long as they are not black and not terrorists. But as they begin to fight for the right to make a living, to have jobs that will allow them to raise a family, they will see the police power of the state turned on them with a vengeance. But that is a few years down the road, not the attacks but the consciousness of what is happening.

At this time, we must outline the reason that police brutality is now the front line of struggle. Within the Black and Latino communities, the police are required to implement the most repressive of agendas. These are oppressed communities that will of necessity resist the obvious unfairness of the police state that exists within these communities. The terms “profiling” or “discriminatory enforcement” are mere euphemisms for police state control. The control now imposed is brutal and violent.

We also expose the ideological foundation of the propaganda machine now being used to divide one section of the working class from another. The term “illegals” is substituted for undocumented workers thereby justifying repressive and oppressive measures. The Muslim community is demonized to justify the same repressive measures historically reserved for the Black community.

If we connect the dots, as corporate speak says, then we can create unity where there has always been division. Ironically, by fighting police brutality in all its forms we are in effect fighting for government of laws, for the implementation of constitutional guarantees. In effect, we are fighting for democracy for the working class.

As always, we fight for the unity of the working class. In this case, that unity will be created by fighting in the streets against the repressive and oppressive power of the state. The fight against police brutality will occur first against the police murder of working people and then against the targeting of vulnerable communities labeled as illegals or terrorists and then fighting against mass foreclosures. In creating that unity, we turn on the real criminals of this society: the war criminals within the Bush II regime, and the corporate executives who exploit and pollute and destroy entire working class communities. In carrying out this class war, we will then expose the fascist’s ideologues that justify and propagate this philosophy of capitalist racism.

In doing that, we will create a society based on unity of purpose that celebrates compassion, empathy, altruism, equality, peace, and productive work. In a word, we create a society, which is the opposite of what we now must endure. We can and will oppose racism and hatred in whatever form. That is not simply a dream but a vision that will motivate our movement.

Yours in Struggle,


Ronald D. Glotta
220 Bagley, Suite 808
Detroit, Michigan 48226
(313) 963-1320
(313) 963-1325 fax


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