I don’t need to go into detail about the troubles we have been going through as of late, but I will merely summarize. Covid-19, police murdering civilians, an ex-police officer – IE a citizen, and his son running down and murdering a jogger, police using unconstitutional no-knock warrant at the wrong house killing an innocent woman, protests in response to all of these subjects with police response being to militarize and commit more brutality. But honestly, the list goes on.
Because of all that has happened with a seemingly rise in police killing citizens, most prominently being black citizens, in this most recent bout of BLM protests we have seen an active effort to defund the police and most recently I have seen a list of what that entails:
As can be seen in the image and explanation (at least from the person who created the list) it explains pretty thoroughly about the reasons for the idea of defunding the police, but I don’t think it goes far enough. From my understanding of the Defund the Police petitions and overall movement and from this picture the whole idea behind it, of course, comes from the facts that since 1994 police across the nation have escalated in militarization with an increase of legal intervention deaths of 45% simply between the years of 1999 and 2013. While the defunding of the police may finally lead to demilitarization of the police forces across the US as well as add additional resources to emergency responders belts IE social workers and mental health workers, it will do very little to actually address the roots of these issues: The government and corporatists in bed together.
William Randolph Hearst, Andrew Mellon and Harry Anslinger alongside the Du Pont petrochemical company worked together from the early decades of the 20th century to criminalize Hemp and marijuana IE Cannabis, Hearst already had a gripe against the Hemp industry for the competition with his lumber, papermill and newspaper interests, and Pancho Villa reclaimed 800,000 acres of his timberland thus rendering his investment in producing low-quality paper were now in danger of being replaced with paper produced from hemp. Hemp or Marijuana made no difference to Hearst and he wanted all Cannabis out of production and on every single anti-narcotics bill.
Treasury Secretary Andrew Mellon, a former banker and big wig at the Gulf Oil Corporation who had invested in the Du Pont family’s newly designed synthetic fabric, nylon, essentially appointed his nephew Harry Anslinger to the newly created position as the head of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics in 1932 and in 1935 both the Bureau of Narcotics and the Treasury Department began creating the Marihuana Tax Act while simultaneously Hearst and his newspapers were printing fabricated and racist stories involving black and Mexican men, women and children using marijuana and committing various crimes also collected and known as the Anslinger Gore files due to the nature of them being collected and used by Anslinger to produce and pass his “tax” act.
The act essentially outlawed the possession of Cannabis and within the first year after the Marihuana Tax Act was passed black people were about three times more likely to be arrested more than whites, Mexicans were nearly nine times simultaneously the act basically secured a monopoly on paints, varnishes, plastics, and rubber for the Du Pont family and Petrochemical company all of which could have been made by hemp and hempseeds thus eliminating competition. Eventually, the act was repealed but replaced the next year under Nixon’s administration under the Controlled Substances Act.
Before we get to that act, let us look back on that last bill. Hearst who in today’s economy based on adjustments would be worth over $30 billion, almost a lifelong Democrat (don’t ask him about his confused years between 04 – 14). The Du Pont company is estimated to be worth between $80 to $130 billion whereas the family is estimated to be worth around $14 billion.
Harry J Anslinger, a republican, and the arbiter over the criminalization and correlation with racist scapegoating can be seen to have had a hand in the creation of America’s and eventually other nation’s domestic and international drug policies. These three grouped together had collaborated in setting up the blueprints for some of the most racist and unconstitutional laws to come around since the establishment of the Jim Crow laws; the Controlled Substances Act, the War on Drugs, and the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994. While that last addition might seem like a stretch to be added within that group, let me explain to you why it isn’t in a quick and simple tl;dr bullet point list:
- Assholes create false and racist news stories to vilify cannabis
- Same assholes pass racist and unconstitutional law in early 1900s, criminalizing something entirely victimless IE Cannabis creating large numbers of arrests within the black and Hispanic communities,
- 1970 Controlled Substances Act classifying Cannabis as a Schedule 1 drug alongside drugs such as heroin and LSD.
- 1973 the DEA is founded
- 1980’s the CIA is involved with the Iran-Contra Affair and the introduction of the Crack Cocaine epidemic within low income and highly dense African American communities starting the Crack Cocaine epidemic.
- Between the 1930s to the 1990s a rise in the creation of gangs and organized crime revolving around the trafficking of illegal substances
- 1993-1994 Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994
Honestly, the list could go on and include many other things that weave together but the explanation of the timeline remains to be explained, the socio-economic development within the Black community was further stunted by politicians and corporatists working together in order to bring profit to their own interests, these unjust laws created a system that would go on to create the drug war, the creation of gangs that revolved around the drug market, in turn, the DEA, more drug crime and violent drug crime including gang wars over drugs and territory to sell said drugs, murder rates skyrocketing and finally the creation of the militarization of the police force in 1993-1994.
To conclude, the idea that defunding the police will actually do anything is nice. It might do a little bit of something but the legitimate answer, the actual steps we need to take to actually start healing and closing the gaps between inequality and injustices starts with defunding the government itself and reducing governmental powers. Defund the entirety of the DEA, ICE, and the ATF, reduce the salaries of our politicians, introduce term limits within all branches of government and make sure these are enforced. Joe Biden has been in the US Senate since 1973 he has had over four decades to do this kind of basic research and repeal these types of racist and unjust laws and fix the inequality within the system itself, essentially his answer in creating that bill in 1993-1994 was a doubling down of those very same racist and unjust laws – side note, Chuck Schumer co-sponsored the bill the day it was brought to the floor 10/26/1993 another man who has been in multiple offices for decades furthermore Bernie Sanders also voted yes on the bill. You can see everyone who voted for it right here.
You actually want to see some change, change the government don’t increase it but reduce it, limit it, and limit its interactions with lobbyists and corporations, make them accountable for their actions. STOP VOTING IN THE SAME PEOPLE WHO HAVE BEEN IN OFFICE FOR DECADES AND HAVE DONE NOTHING TO CHANGE A GOD DAMN THING. Black Lives Matter, but not to a career politician.
Jarod A Goodwin
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