We the people have always been taught to believe that the police exist to protect and to serve. And this statement is true.
Except for one fact.
The police do not exist to protect and serve the people – they are paid to protect and serve the ruling class.
If you are not a part of the ruling coalition, you are a slave. A slave is defined as a person who is the legal property of another and is forced to obey them. As a citizen of a nation, you are the legal property of that nation by virtue of citizenship. And because you are property of the nation or state, you are forced to obey the laws of that nation. The penalty for disobedience are fines, detainment or death.
If you are a student of history, look back to how the slave catchers of yesterday became the police officers today and you will find proof of the claims made above. And in case you are still not convinced, we can look at how police are used all over the world to keep the people enslaved and in line.
- How Slave Catchers Of Yesterday Became The Police Officers Of Today
- The Truth About Who Police Work For In Western Style Democracies Like America And Europe
- How Police Serve Oppressive Regimes In Black Nations
- Policing For Profit – The Unspoken ‘Black Tax’
How Slave Catchers Of Yesterday Became The Police Officers Of Today
Some of the primary policing institutions there were the slave patrols tasked with chasing down runaways and preventing slave revolts… the first formal slave patrol had been created in the Carolina colonies in 1704. During the Civil War, the military became the primary form of law enforcement in the South, but during Reconstruction, many local sheriffs functioned in a way analogous to the earlier slave patrols, enforcing segregation and the disenfranchisement of freed slaves.Time Magazine
In every place where slavery was legal, slave patrols were critical to slave owners who would pay slave patrols to find and bring back runaway slaves. These slave patrols would also guard the roads, stopping any Black traveller and asking for their ‘papers’ – the same way that Black drivers are stopped today and asked for their license and registration.
This system worked well for individual slave owners, but was insufficient to put down larger slave rebellions.
For instance, when fugitive slaves united with Native Americans like the Natchez and Choctow to demand their autonomy from the French colonial government in 1729, whites were overpowered and outnumbered.
At the end of the uprising, 138 white men, 35 white women and 56 white children were killed in what came to be known as the Natchez massacre.
New Orleans responded by creating their first slave patrol thirty years later, in 1764. After the Haitian Revolution in 1791, police officers in New Orleans began carrying guns for the first time in fear that the revolution would spread to the United States.
The state passed a law that Blacks—be they enslaved or free—were no longer allowed to immigrate to the city (Wagner, 2010).
The existence of slave patrols also helped city government officials argue that they needed to provide protection to the broader public through armed patrol (Wish, 1939; Williams, 1972; Wagner, 2010). Thus, the official police force was created.
The story of New Orleans is repeated across the United States and around the world:
Armed citizens are given authority by the ruling elite to catch individual slaves, force the compliance of the enslaved masses, and lynch anyone who refuses to cooperate. And when mass uprisings take place, these individuals are organized into a domestic army – a police force – to maintain “law and order”.
That is not to say that rebellions are the only time that police are organized against Black citizens. During the destruction of ‘Black Wall Street’ in Tulsa, Oklahoma, a mob of hundreds of White deputies killed or injured more than 800 Black residents.
During the early hours of the conflict local authorities did little to stem the growing crisis. Indeed… Tulsa police officers deputized former members of the lynch mob and, according to an eyewitness, instructed them to “get a gun and get a nigger.”
Shortly before dawn on June 1, thousands of armed whites had gathered along the fringes of Greenwood. When daybreak came, they poured into the African American district, looting homes and businesses and setting them on fire. Numerous atrocities occurred, including the murder of A. C. Jackson, a renowned black surgeon, who was shot after he surrendered to a group of whites. At least one machine gun was utilized by the invading whites, and some participants have claimed that airplanes were also used in the attack.Oklahoma Historical Society
The Tulsa Massacre stands as an example of how white supremacist regimes will use force to maintain their supremacy. You see, Black Wall Street might not have been a physical threat to whites, but the city was an economic threat. Residents had built more than 600 Black owned businesses in the city that included the following:
- 21 Restaurants
- 30 Grocery Stores
- 2 Movie Theaters
- 6 Private Airplane Transports
- Public Works that included libraries, bus lines, and post offices
These businesses made Black residents economically independent from white society. And since slavery has always been an economic weapon of white supremacy, any threat to white economy was as much a threat as a physical one.
If we fast forward to modern times, we see that not much has changed. Black men, women, and children are still being targeted and checked as if we were runaway slaves. Consider the following facts.
Now that you understand how slave patrols became police officers, let’s look at how police forces are used to catch and keep Black slaves in modern times.
The Truth About Who Police Work For In Western Style Democracies Like America And Europe
Before we talk about who the police really work for, you must understand how power works within nation-states.
Each nation-state has a leader. That leader has one objective – to stay in power for as long as possible. This is true of the United States, whose Presidents seek to appoint Supreme Court Justices who will carry out their will even after they leave office. And it is most certainly true of leaders at the State level.
There are some Senators who have served terms so long that African Dictators would be jealous. Here is a table of some of the longest serving Senators in United States History.
- Robert C. Byrd (D-WV) Time In Power: 51 years
- Daniel K. Inouye (D-HI) Time In Power: 49 years, 11 months, 15 days
- Strom Thurmond (D, R-SC) Time In Power: 47 years, 5 months, 8 days
- Ted M. Kennedy (D-MA) Time In Power: 46 years, 9 months, 19 days
- Patrick J. Leahy (D-VT) J Time In Power: 45 years
These 5 Senators all held power longer than the longest serving African Dictator. The last Senator on the list – Patrick Leahy is still in power.
Compare that to Paul Biya, the current Dictator of Equatorial Guinea. He has “only” been in power for 44 years.
The fundamental premise here is something called ‘selectorate theory’ which states that the primary goal of a leader is to remain in power. Not to serve the people and not to make the people’s lives better. But to stay in power.
But even the most powerful of Dictators must rely on a small group of people to maintain their power. That group – according to selectorate theory – is known as the ‘winning coalition’. This is a small group of elites who finance a leader or a Dictator, or who give that person the political support they need to win an election.
For instance, the Electoral College in the United States is a small group of just 538 electors. This small group decides who becomes President.
It is not the popular vote that wins elections in the United States. That is why Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by 2.9 million votes and still lost the election.
The Electoral College handed the election to Donald Trump against the will of the people.
Like the Electoral College, Congress in the United States is a small body of just 535 voting members. And there are roughly 31,700 State and Federal Judges in the United States that make and interpret the law (according to the University of Denver).
Keep in mind that there are about 327 million people in the United States. That means that almost all power is held by just 32,773 people… less than 1% of the population.
Some simple math reveals a scary fact – just 0.01% of the United States population decides who leads and what laws are passed or enforced. This .01% is America’s ‘winning coalition’.
Similarly, in the United Kingdom, the Prime Minister is usually elected by the people and by his or her Party. However, the Royal Family is still a part of the winning coalition there, and the Queen has the power to fire the Prime Minister.
…as lawyer David Allen Green wrote in the Financial Times earlier this year, “these are not normal times”. In the lead-up to the 31 October Brexit deadline, former attorney-general Dominic Grieve raised the possibility that the Queen could sack Boris Johnson if he refused to comply with Parliament’s new legislation to avoid a no-deal exit from the EU.Can Queen Elizabeth sack Boris Johnson? – Financial Times
Members of the winning coalition usually want a quid pro quo – a ‘something for something’ – in exchange for their support. That something can be political power, protection, or a competitive advantage. In short, they want some of the power and money that the leader has.
Once power is passed out among the elites, the elites then make or enforce rules that benefit them and their interests. These rules can cover immigration, how certain groups are taxed, where tax money goes, and who can participate in the political process.
Police are used to carry out the will of the ruling class. They ensure that the new taxes, fines, and fees are collected from the people. They ensure immigration is kept in check. They ensure that property is protected.
For example, we mentioned the Tulsa Race Riots earlier. What we did not mention was the role of the National Guard during the uprising. During the massacre, the National Guard were mobilized as a de facto police force. These units did not stop the attacks on Black residents. Instead, they spent most of the night protecting a white neighborhood from a possible Black counterattack.
You read that right.
In so-called Democracies, police are used to protect the interests of the elites and not the will of the people. This is why you will find Black police officers guarding white supremacist rallies.
How Police Serve Oppressive Regimes In Black Nations
The bigger the ‘winning coalition’ that a leader has to answer to, the better it is for the masses. That is because there are more interests that have a seat at the power sharing table, and it is harder for a leader to bribe thousands of people to gain political support.
That is not true in authoritarian governments that have a very small group of essential people that the leader must rely on to keep and maintain power.
Take Nigeria, for example.
Nigeria is the largest Black nation in the world with a population of more than 190 million beautiful people. The country is divided into 36 different states, each with its own traditional ruler. Across those 36 different states there are approximately 20 Kings who have no constitutional powers.
Nigeria’s law making body was modelled after the federal Congress of the United States. It consists of a Senate with 109 members and a 360-member House of Representatives. The nation also has a Supreme Court and lower courts that manage both Christian and Islamic law matters.
But here is the thing…
All of the Supreme Court Justices, Federal justices, Appeal Court justices, Kadis of the Sharia Court of Appeal, and Judges of the Customary Court of Appeal are all appointed by one person – the President of Nigeria.
This gives the Nigerian president the power to crush political opposition through his proxies in the courts. So it is no wonder that the Supreme Court recently upheld the election of President M. Buhari, despite serious problems in the polls.
During elections, Buhari used the police force to influence the outcome of his nations elections. And he was not shy about admitting that he was the hand behind it all.
“I have given the military and the police instructions to be ruthless. We are not going to be blamed for the bad conduct of the election.”Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, speaking at an emergency meeting of All Progressives Congress party, Abuja
Once again, we see the police being used to keep Black masses in line with the interests of the ruling elite.
And since the police are responsible for maintaining control on behalf of the ruling elite, they are given permission to terrorize the public, so long as they dont go far enough to spark a major uprising.
Nigerian police use any reason to extort, beat, and terrorize its citizens. Asking for police assistance makes you an immediate target for extortion.
A 2017 survey carried out by Afrobarometer – a non-partisan research network that conducts public attitude surveys across Africa – revealed the following:
To receive police assistance, 68% of respondents claimed that they had to pay a bribe, give a gift, or do a favour.
Even having dreadlocks (in Africa!) is enough to make you a target.
In Lagos, Port Harcourt, and most of the major cities in Nigeria, police checkpoints are now commonplace and should serve as a source of ressaurance in their communities, and a deterrent for crime. But for many young Nigerians, they leave us questioning how you present yourself and unsurprisingly a pathological fear of the police is growing.
“Dreads are obviously an attraction for them,” says Mo’believe, an urban-folklore singer living in Lagos, who shares that he has been extorted and had his life threatened by police because of his hair. “They automatically assume you are a fraudster. If Nigeria had a jury system, locs would mean you’re most likely guilty. It would be very easy for them to say, ‘He is a thief, can’t you see his hair? Can any responsible person be carrying this hair?’”Dazed Digital
And if you are foolish enough to show your iphone in public, you make yourself an instant target for Nigerian police.
Nigeria may be brutal when it comes to police brutality, but they are tame compared to the police forces in places like Gambia.
Under the Dictator Yaya Jammeh, who ruled The Gambia from 1994 to 2017, you were arrested, beaten, or killed for so much as criticizing the regime:
Gambian police assaulted Jammeh, a reporter for the English-language biweekly The Independent, near the newspaper’s offices in the capital, Banjul. According to sources, two police officers stationed a short distance from the newspaper stopped Jammeh on his way to a radio station where he works part-time as a deejay. Alhaji Yorro Jallow, The Independent’s managing editor, told CPJ that the officers regularly see staff members from The Independent and could identify Jammeh as a reporter at the newspaper.
The officers asked to search Jammeh’s bag but refused to give a reason for the search. After Jammeh refused the officers’ request, they overpowered him, confiscating his notebook and several music CDs and cassettes. The officers then beat Jammeh until his face was swollen, according to the journalist’s colleagues, who saw him after the attack.
While the officers gave no reasons for their actions, local journalists told CPJ that Jammeh may have been singled out because of his association with The Independent, which had recently run a series of articles and editorials criticizing the government.UN Refugee Agency Attacks on the Press in 2003 – The Gambia
The man above was lucky. Many other journalists were killed for less. The Jammeh regime regularly used the police forces to harass opposition members and parties, and turned a blind eye to police abuse and corruption.
The difference between the use of police in so-called ‘democracies’ versus autocracies are that in the west, police tend to be used to maintain economic supremacy by the ruling elites, whereas in African nations police are used as a tool for political domination and a repression of the masses.
Policing For Profit – The Unspoken ‘Black Tax’
In all the cases mentioned above, the police are used as a buffer between the ruling classes and the working masses. This is why leaders work hard to take care of both the police and the ruling class. If they dont, the police will stand aside and let the masses rise up to fly at the throats of the leaders.
In African nations, police forces tend to be used as a tool of political repression. And because they are paid so little in many cases, these police are not shy about extorting citizens to make up the difference.
But in the West, police are used to tax the people on behalf of the government. This makes police more than just a buffer class – they are also an important source of revenue for the State.
A growing body of evidence indicates that local police departments are increasingly being used to provide revenue for municipalities by imposing and collecting fees, fines, and asset forfeitures…
We find that police departments in cities that collect a greater share of their revenue from fees – conceivably because their governing bodies pu pressure on them to generate revenue – solve violent crimes at significantly lower rates.New York University – Exploitative Revenues, Law Enforcement, and the Quality of Government Service
Here are three ways the Black masses specifically are preyed upon by police to support the State, corporations, and banks.
Taxation by Citation
Do yourself a favor and watch the short video below.
Here is data that backs up the investigative report above. Specifically, Black drivers are stopped and fined more often than any other group of people in the United States and other Western Nations.
According to the table above, residents in Black neighborhoods receive more than double the number of citations than residents in white neighborhoods. And when Black drivers are fined, they are forced to pay as much as triple the average.
This is likely because Black drivers are more frequently targeted and stopped by police than other groups.
The state Department of Justice report, released Thursday, found that Black people accounted for 15% of all stops examined in California, though they make up only about 6% of the state population, according to U.S. census figures. White and Latino drivers were stopped at rates generally proportional to population estimates. Police were most likely to stop Black men they perceived as being between the ages of 25 and 34.
The findings, the first scrutiny of racial bias in police stops released under a 2015 state law, appear to largely confirm what independent researchers and Black drivers have long discussed: “Driving while Black” represents an elevated risk of a law enforcement encounter.LA Times – Black drivers face more police stops in California, state analysis shows
The situation is the same for Black Britons who are more than nine times more likely to be stopped and searched for drugs than white people, despite using illegal substances at a lower rate. (Source)
Asset forfeiture is a police practice that allows departments to seize and keep anything valuable from a person suspected of criminal activity. Black suspects do not need to be convicted of a crime – just suspected of one. In fact, asset forfeiture happens before due process or conviction.
Over three years, law enforcement agencies seized $17 million from people in South Carolina they thought got the money through illegal means, according to an investigation by two newspapers.
About 65 percent of the people targeted for civil asset forfeiture in the state from 2014 to 2016 were black males in a state where African-American men make up just 13 percent of the population, according to “Taken,” a project by The Greenville News and Anderson Independent Mail.Associated Press – Papers: Police seize $17M in 3 years; blacks targeted most
100 percent of forfeiture proceeds go to law enforcement in what can be called for-profit policing. The practice has become so widespread and aggressive that police now take more valuables from Black Citizens than burglars do!
If this sounds similar to the Nigerian Police Force mentioned above, that is because it is exactly the same.
Police officers have the power to take your cash and your car without charging you with a crime. And if you want to get your property back, you must go to court – costing you additional fees.
Take the story of Anthonia Nwaorie – a Black woman who grew up in Nigeria but became an American citizen in 1992. The 59-year old nurse wanted to do something for her birth country, so she saved up $41,377 in cash and bought medical supplies.
Her plan was to start a medical clinic for women and children in a village.
However, she was stopped at the airport by customs officers and all of her cash was seized. To this day, she has still not gotten her money back.
“Anthonia’s case really demonstrates how abusive civil forfeiture is,” said one of her lawyers, Anya Bidwell, “because she’s an outstanding individual, she’s a US citizen, she wants to do good in the world and if she’s not safe from civil forfeiture then nobody is safe from civil forfeiture. (Source)
Departments of Correction And The Companies That Profit From Them
We know that police stop and issue citations to Black people more often than any other group in the West. We have also seen how police use civil asset forfeiture to flat out rob Black civilians who have not been convicted of a crime.
If all that wasn’t enough, police arrest Black men, women, and children so that private prisons and the companies that support them can profit from Black bodies. In fact, Black folks are far more likely to be imprisoned than any other group in the United States.
The simple reason for this disparity – aside from racism – is that Black men and women are less likely to have the means and solidarity to protect themselves as a group. Therefore, they are disproportionately targeted and victimized.
Police take advantage of the weakness in the Black community to feed us into yet another money trap: an endless cycle of prosecution, prison, and probation/parole.
How Jails and Prisons Make Money
Jails and prisons are huge sources of both public and private revenue. The largest private prison corporations, Core Civic and GEO Group, collectively manage over half of the private prison contracts in the United States with combined revenues of $3.5 billion as of 2015.
Prisons force prisoners to pay for a number of services. Here is a short list:
- Pay – to – stay: Franklin County, Ohio charges inmates $40 a day to stay in their jail.
- Meals: The county jail in Maricopa County, Arizona charges inmates $1.25 a day for meals
- Phone services: 21 cents per minute
- Medical needs
- Jail Booking Fee: Ranges from $25 to $100 per person per arrest.
For those who cant or dont pay for services, prisons use slave labor to generate revenue for private corporations or the state. And this is perfectly legal under the 13th Amendment of the Constitution of the United States.
The 13th amendment to the United States Constitution provides that “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”
Jails and prisons take advantage of the 13th Amendment by marketing inmate labor to private corporations.
About 17,000 inmates at federal prisons work at more than 50 government factories, farms, and call centers across the country, according to the latest annual report published by the DOJ program Federal Prison Industries, also known as Unicor. Prisoners make air filters, clothes, lamps, and office supplies for wages that range from 23 cents an hour to $1.15 an hour.Vox – The federal government markets prison labor to businesses as the “best-kept secret”
How Probation and Parole Makes Its Money
Once our Brothers and Sisters leave jail or prison, they are placed on probation and parole – a form of police supervision that is designed to keep them in the system.
While on probation/parole, Black men and women are forced to pay high monthly fees or risk being sent back to jail or prison. Private companies take their cut out of each payment, earning millions of dollars per year in the process.
JPay began in 2002 as a prison money-wiring service, offering a quicker alternative for families who wanted to mail a money order to incarcerated loved ones. The expediency came with a price: The fees for each transaction could be as high as $11.95.
Back in 2011, according to this document obtained by the Huffington Post, JPay reported a revenue of $30.4 million; three years later, its revenue had more than doubled to $70.4 million.
Today, the company processes probation and parole payments too. They even have an app.
Electronic monitoring has become a staple in many probation programs, opening up yet another profitable stream of income for Departments of Justice.
In Richland County, South Carolina, any person ordered to wear an ankle monitor as a condition of bail must lease the bracelet from a for-profit company called Offender Management Services. OMS charges the offender $9.25 per day, or about $300 per month, plus a $179.50 setup fee, according to county documents obtained through a Freedom of Information request.Prison Legal News – Electronic Monitoring Has Become the New Debtors Prison
The above numbers are what Black men and women pay just to be supervised. Costs and fees like court ordered drug counseling, sex offender treatment, or any other offender programs all must be paid for by the individual.
To sum up, here is a list of every fine, fee, or expense listed above:
- Higher fines and citations issued by officers averaging $145
- Average asset forfeiture of $550 (Source)
- Court appearance fees averaging $200
- Jail booking fees averaging $62
- $28 for meals at $1.25 per day (The expected average length of stay for local jail inmates was 23 days in 2013 (Source).
- $50 per day pay-to-stay totaling $1178
- $50 – $150 per month probation and parole supervision fees (Source)
- $300 per month, plus a $179.50 setup fee for electronic surveillance
Thats a $2,346.50 Black tax and an additional $50 – $150 per month in supervision fees and $300 per month in electronic monitoring fees for a total of as much as $450 per month.
Not to mention the loss of income, expenses, and a rainbow of fees that were not calculated.
At the end of the day, we the people have always been taught to believe that the police exist to protect us and to serve us. But nothing could be farther from the truth.