So there are groups that do this, they stay in highly policed areas on shifts and bring cameras and such, and record to make sure police brutality doesn’t escalate, and when it happens there’s evidence against it.
But that’s not the only way it can happen.
Every single person is entitled to watch an arrest go down as long as they are not obstructing or interfering. That means, if you see cops bumrush someone, even if that person is waving a gun, you are allowed, even legally permitted and encouraged to watch the events occur.
This is important white folks, because the cops work inyourservice. Oh sure, they’re supposedly in the service of “the common good” but we all know that means protecting white people.
And now a story, when I was in high school, and my mom was working under a horrific principal, she was late to work one day because there was something going on in our neighborhood. Cops were gathered near our pharmacy and a guy was on the roof (it’s a little over one story, so he wasn’t a jumper or anything) and she stayed as long as she could and watched the scenario go down for a while. Not because she’s trifling. not because she’s nosy. But because she saw a POC and cops gathered and said to herself “I want to make sure this goes by the book.”
And that’s all it takes to be a cop watcher.
You acknowledge that you, as a white person, are in a relative position of safety and you watch. You bear witness, because your voice, unfortunately, carries more weight than ours in the criminal justice system.
Justice is not blind, nor should you be.
If there are cops, and they outnumber an individual, shit, even if it’s 1:1, it is your responsibility to keep an eye on the scenario and take down whatever information you can. And if it looks like something shady is going on, you areobligatedto call in to your local precinct and say “Listen, I saw X happen on Y, and it looked questionable.” And if you get a negative response, well, y’know what? You find out if there’s a civilian oversight committee. In NYC we have one, but they’re underfunded and continually being legislated against (currently there’s a statute of 18 months from the time of the event within which you have to file charges).
If the prospect of keeping vigilant about cops scares you, imagine being a POC, and knowing that no matter what you do, you could be railroaded by a system that wants to not only disenfranchise you, but has no intentions of treating you as a human being.
Take your fears and shove ‘em down, because they’ll never be anything when compared to what we face on a daily basis.
AND YOU KNOW WHAT IS SO FUNNY??? THIS POST HAS SEVEN FUCKING NOTES. BECAUSE GIVING WHITE PEOPLE SOME INFORMATION AND TOOLS THAT THEY CAN ACTUALLY USE TO TAKE ACTION AS ALLIES IS NOT WORTH THEM LIKING OR REBLOGGING AND SHARING WITH EACH OTHER. IT’S NOT LIKE THEY ARE ACTUALLY GOING TO DO ANYTHING WITH IT! RIGHT? RIGHT? IT’S “FUNNY” CUZ IT’S JUST BLACK AND BROWN LIVES ON THE LINE ANYWAY.