I know, right?
Here’s the article in which I graciously told law enforcement to kindly fuck off.
The editor at the print publication that I write for forwarded me a response from a police officer who wanted to “set me straight.” Below is how we felt about the column. As a gesture, the officer will remain anonymous because chances are, Anonymous will hack your department’s website and reveal all of your department’s identities eventually.This is what I sent back to him:
“In response to Mr. Nelson’s opinion and thoughts on laws and authority figures, he needs to be set straight. Very briefly, one of the basic requirements of having laws and people to enforce them: ‘To Protect People From Themselves.’ If not you have anarchy and we revert back to being Neanderthals.
This I learned many years ago on the first day of police training in order to better understand why I was there and the purpose of my function and others in my position in society.”
Thank you for taking the time to respond to my column officer. Allow me to counter.
Firstly, myself and many people that I care about have already been set straight by law enforcement agents such as yourself. We have been blinded by your pepper spray at point blank range for silently sitting on a plot of grass peacefully. We have been set straight by the beatings, wounds, and scars individuals in your profession have inflicted on us. Law enforcement as a collective whole has busted through our doors in the middle of the night and have stolen our belongings, spied on us, threatened us, and in many cases even killed us. Like I said in my column, the police have almost always been on the wrong side when it comes to positive social change. From the United States to Egypt, your primary objective is to serve and protect the status quo, not the people.
If your passion was to truly prevent crime, then why do you choose the side that oppresses the people who are risking their freedoms and lives to change the social conditions that generate crime in the first place? It’s because that is not your function as a police officer. Your purpose is to ensure that the mechanisms of the current social order are well oiled and continue to reinforce the power of those with capital and seats of power.
You are not protecting the people from themselves, you are protecting power from the people.
However, you are right about one thing. Without you, we would return to Anarchy and that is precisely what we want. Believe it or not, there was a time in human history where we did not need police or any form of government at all. Human beings did not need it because they didn’t live under an economic system that artificially created scarcity. ItwasAnarchy in the sense that human beings were free. Thus, there was equilibrium with the natural world.
I don’t wish to romanticize groups of people who live and have lived in this way, for that’s simply another form of objectification. Thereweredisputes and conflicts then as well. The difference being that people were forced to work them out, part separate ways, or come to some kind of compromise. Indigenous peoples very rarely engaged in armed conflict. When they did, a very few people were ever hurt or killed.
There is a reason why you were taught that you need to “protect people from themselves.” It’s because that’s the thing that rationalizes your injustices and oppressive activities towards people in so called “lower” positions in society.
I don’t expect you to read this a quit your job tomorrow. So I suppose the only other option myself and individuals like me have is to continue working and fighting against you. Believe me, I wish with every cell in my body that this can be dealt with in another way. Unfortunately, so long as we continue to dismantle systems of oppressive power, we will remain in conflict with the institutions you represent.
It’s nothing personal officer. I’m sure you’re a pleasant human being. It’s not you specifically that I have a problem with, it’s your fucking uniform.
If there’s one thing you take away from this, know that we don’t do what we do for a paycheck. You do. When you’re laid off here pretty soon, let us see how motivated you’ll be in beating the shit out of teenagers in the streets for chanting, “No justice. No peace. FUCK THE POLICE!” Chances are, you’ll be joining them.
With Love and Resistance,
Your friendly neighborhood Anarchist.
(P.S. Call in sick on May 1st!)