(Frase 2012) No police order

Frase, Peter. No police order [Internet]. Jacobin. 2012 Feb 2. Available from: http://jacobinmag.com/blog/2012/02/no-police-order/. Accessed 2012 Feb 16. Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation.org/65VbZam0K.

Frase responds to a proposal by Alex Hanna that radicals in the USA should attempt to win the police over, since their perceived legitimacy in the eyes of the public could cause a confrontational approach to backfire. Frase acknowledges that intentional provocation of the police is a generally a mistake, but argues against any active attempt to reach out to the police, placate them, or constrain one’s own behavior within limits set by the police. Frase asserts that any such complaisant approach will only lead the police, with the complicity of biased mainstream news media, incrementally to redefine any failure to comply with police demands as “violence”. And the police themselves will use violent coercion against radical activists regardless of the activists’ behavior. Frase denies that there is any fundamental difference between the character, behavior, or social role of police in the USA and in other nations where radicals have ultimately had to confront the police forcefully, such as Egypt. Frase asserts that the perceived legitimacy of the police in the eyes of the public is a cause of police violence, and that undermining that legitimacy is a critically important task for radicals in the USA.



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Last revision: April 5, 2013