A Brief History of the “War on Cops”: The False Allegation That Enables Police Violence

From Truth Out:

 

Police loom in the background as activists from BYP 100 and the #LetUsBreathe collective form a blockade line at Chicago's Homan Square facility, a site of documented torture of civilians by the police, on July 20, 2016. (Photo: Sarah-Ji)

Police loom in the background as activists from BYP 100 and the #LetUsBreathe collective form a blockade line at Chicago’s Homan Square facility, a site of documented torture of civilians by the police, on July 20, 2016. (Photo: Sarah-Ji)

As part of a global action proclaiming “Freedom Now,” Black Lives Matter groups shut down police operations around the country on July 20. From Oakland to Washington, D.C., New York City to Chicago and Detroit, these bold and creative acts of civil disobedience issued a demand to “Fund Black Futures.” Protests in New York shut down the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association while those in D.C. closed the National Fraternal Order of Police office for the day.

These protests, which promise to continue, call attention to the routine police murders of Black women, men, and children. Further, especially in targeting the police unions, these protests challenge the false idea that there is a “war on cops.”

Numerous sources confirm that there is no such war. Last year was one of the safest on record for police officers, and even with the targeted killings in Dallas and Baton Rouge, being a police officer does not rate as one of the 10 most dangerous jobs in the country. It is far less dangerous than logging, fishing, or roofing.

Yet, conservative commentators routinely sound the alarm against a “war on cops.” This claim surfaces not only in those rare instances when an officer is killed but also anytime people challenge police violence or authority. Former …

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