black holes and gray matter. in one thousand tangos.

             
Securitizing America: Strategic Incapacitation & the Policing of Protest Since 9/11

During the 1970s, the predominant strategy of protest policing shifted from ‘escalated force’ and repression of protesters to one of ‘negotiated management’ and mutual cooperation with protesters. Following the failures of negotiated management at the 1999 World Trade Organization demonstrations in Seattle, law enforcement quickly developed a new social control strategy, referred to here as ‘strategic incapacitation’. The US police response to the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks quickened the pace of police adoption of this new strategy, which emphasizes the goals of ‘securitizing society’ and isolating or neutralizing the sources of potential disruption. These goals are accomplished through (1) the use of surveillance and information sharing as a way to assess and monitor risks, (2) the use of pre-emptive arrests and less-lethal weapons to selectively disrupt or incapacitate protesters that engage in disruptive protest tactics or might do so, and (3) the extensive control of space in order to isolate and contain disruptive protesters actual or potential. In a comparative fashion, this paper examines the shifts in United States policing strategies over the last 50 years and uses illustrative cases from national conventions, the global justice movement and the anti-war movement to show how strategic incapacitation has become a leading social control strategy used in the policing of protests since 9/11. 

Read on.

UPDATE: The girl in the photo is 20-year-old Elizabeth Nichols, originally from Arkansas. She moved to Portland only six months ago. Her mother, Annie Nichols, is housebound with multiple sclerosis and has no medical care. Her father is also disabled. The family lives on one disability check. Her mother said that Elizabeth wasn’t always an activist. “She never took part in anything like this. Of course, it’s Arkansas. There isn’t a lot of that here.” 

UPDATE: The girl in the photo is 20-year-old Elizabeth Nichols, originally from Arkansas. She moved to Portland only six months ago. Her mother, Annie Nichols, is housebound with multiple sclerosis and has no medical care. Her father is also disabled. The family lives on one disability check. Her mother said that Elizabeth wasn’t always an activist. “She never took part in anything like this. Of course, it’s Arkansas. There isn’t a lot of that here.” 

This is Lt. John Pike. 530-752-3989. japikeiii@ucdavis.edu (via: motherjones)
"I am writing to tell you in no uncertain terms that there must be space for protest on our campus. There must be space for political dissent on our campus. There must be space for civil disobedience on our campus. There must be space for students to assert their right to decide on the form of their protest, their dissent, and their civil disobedience—including the simple act of setting up tents in solidarity with other students who have done so. There must be space for protest and dissent, especially, when the object of protest and dissent is police brutality itself…"
— Assistant Professor Brown 

This is Lt. John Pike. 530-752-3989. japikeiii@ucdavis.edu (via: motherjones)

"I am writing to tell you in no uncertain terms that there must be space for protest on our campus. There must be space for political dissent on our campus. There must be space for civil disobedience on our campus. There must be space for students to assert their right to decide on the form of their protest, their dissent, and their civil disobedience—including the simple act of setting up tents in solidarity with other students who have done so. There must be space for protest and dissent, especially, when the object of protest and dissent is police brutality itself…"

— Assistant Professor Brown 

peterfeld:

You have to watch the whole 8:34. I didn’t at first, because I couldn’t take any more of seeing UC Davis Police Lt. John Pike (530-752-3989, japikeiii@ucdavis.edu) pepper-spray a row of peaceful students like they were cockroaches.

But watching the nonviolent crowd (I never believed that nonviolence is a morally superior tactic, but it is effective) shame the pigs pointing rifles at them, and force them to retreat and leave (“You can go!”), might be the most inspiring thing you see all year.

(via evangotlib)

"[T]he same factors that rendered this police crackdown inevitable will also ensure that this protest movement endures: the roots of the anger are real, profound and impassioned. Just as American bombs ostensibly aimed at reducing Terrorism have the exact opposite effect — by fueling the anti-American sentiments that cause Terrorism in the first place — so, too, will excessive police force further fuel the Occupy movement. Nothing highlights the validity of the movement’s core grievances more than watching a piggish billionaire Wall Street Mayor — who bought and clung to his political power using his personal fortune — deploy force against marginalized citizens peacefully and lawfully protesting joblessness, foreclosures and economic suffering. If Michael Bloomberg didn’t exist, the Occupy protesters would have to invent him.”

Glenn Greenwald: OWS-inspired Activism

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