This is insane. Did someone declare martial law and we all missed it?
Meanwhile, the FBI is paying creepy visits to Black Lives Matter activists who aren't even planning to attend the Republican National Convention. Interrogating someone's grandmother.
We have to dismantle and remake so much of our country's mammoth, bloated security apparatus—from the police to the military to the FBI and NSA. Here's Ta-Nehisi Coates on why police "reform" alone is deeply insufficient, echoing Charles on the need for widespread decriminalization:
There is so much work to do—and much of it will be up to grassroots social movements, because I don't see Democrats coming out hard on these issues. Consider what local comedian and activist Brett Hamil did last week, right here in the solidly Democratic city of Seattle, and think about what actions you can take:
Hamil, frustrated with white people who “can type a 1,000-word post but can't bother to make a phone call or show up at a vigil,” decided to try a different tack. Informed by local black organizers and his own research on the issues, Hamil typed a brief blurb featuring Mayor Ed Murray’s phone number and a four-point list of demands he wanted to see enacted regarding police oversight, the developing Seattle Police Officers Guild contract, and the costly construction of the $160 million North Seattle Police Precinct and $210 million youth jail. Thanks to signal boosts from prominent community voices like Ijeoma Oluo, the simple text meme, a black-and-white screenshot of a Word document, was shared thousands of times on Facebook, and #CallOutMurray hit Seattle’s top-trending list on Twitter. The makeshift campaign worked: The line got so jammed that callers reported that the Mayor’s number went straight to a busy signal.