(Graeber 2012) New police strategy in New York—sexual assault against peaceful protestors

Graeber, David. New police strategy in New York—sexual assault against peaceful protestors. Naked Capitalism. 2012 May 3. Available from: http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2012/05/david-graeber-new-police-strategy-in-new-york-sexual-assault-against-peaceful-protestors.html. Accessed 2012 May 7. Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation.org/67UxoRP8q.

Graeber documents a recent pattern of police violence against women during recent Occupy Wall Street demonstrations in New York City, especially numerous incidents of breast grabbing. Activist Cecily McMillan’s breast was grabbed hard enough to leave a visible hand-shaped bruise; another female demonstrator reported having her breasts grabbed by five different police officers in a single night. Graeber infers that this pattern is the result of a deliberate policy of sexual terrorization of female protesters, adopted at high levels. He points out the analogy to a similar sudden outbreak of sexual violence on the part of Egyptian police in 2011, and states that in Egypt no serious observer doubts that the pattern was the manifestation of deliberate high-level police policy. Graeber points out that demands for absolute proof (rather than merely suggestive evidence) of such high-level direction in New York are likely to be manifestations of deep-seated but questionable assumptions about the benign intentions and public-service function of police forces in the USA.



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