Sunday, May 10, 2009

Alternatives to Police

I don't like cops. The fact that the government assumes we need armed thugs to prod and coerce us into conforming to societal and accepted norms and traditions is, to me, absurd. To paraphrase Michael Parenti, the idea that police keep 'order' and fight crime are simply not true. The true use of a police force anywhere is social control (to force us to conform to aforementioned societal norms) and protection of property (i.e., keeping the property and capital in the hands of the rich elite). The vast majority of police aren't out to protect the working class from anti-social, violent people. Instead, they are out to "protect" the minority (the rich, elite, and authoritarian upper class) from us, the disenfranchised and oppressed majority.

Still, some people assume that a world without police would degenerate into a violent free-for-all, with every person out to kill, rape ans steal. I don't think that this is the case. In fact, I think that society could function very well without police in the commonly accepted traditional sense of the word. I will now highlight some things that we can do as anarchists to demonstrate to the populace why we could very well live without police, and how this perceived impossibility is far more realistic than many assume.

1) Observe and Respect Natural Laws: This should be self-explanatory to the anarchist, but might need explained to those who are unaware of what it means. Natural Laws are common and almost axiomatic things that are "right." The right to free-speech, free-thought and free-expression are natural laws. The right of non-coercion and personal choice are natural laws. The right to live peacefully and defend your health and freedom in the face of violence is a natural law. In essence, following the golden rule and living in communion with your community
sum up what Natural Laws are.

2) When Conflicts Arise, Solve them Internally: Instead of letting a dispute escalate into violence (where most people assume that police would be needed to detain the persons and mediate the argument), don't let it go that far. Work on developing mutual respect for others and practice conflict-resolution without the aid of a guy holding a gun. Being able to talk out a problem and then hammer out a compromise would undermine much of the perceived need for police. Above all, never resort to violence during a petty dispute, no matter how tempting.

3) Move Towards a Tight-Knit Community: Knowing your neighbors and interacting with them will greatly diminish confrontations altogether. they will obviously still happen, but having an active participatory role in your community lessens the chances of alienating disputes between two or more indifferent citizens. Tighten community solidarity by working together as a whole, and being personable. Make friends, share in the labor and fun that go hand-in-hand with communities, and be respectful. When the community is tight-knit and unified in happiness, problems won't arise nearly as often.

In short, live the revolution you want in your everyday life, and we can show the pigs that we don't need them or their "protection."


Jesse M. said...

I really liked this post, and couldn't agree with you more on most points. "When Conflicts Arise, Solve them Internally: Instead of letting a dispute escalate into violence (where most people assume that police would be needed to detain the persons and mediate the argument), don't let it go that far." this could be a problem only due to current mindsets in this regards. Change the way we think and we can do this...people like you and I can and do approach it this way normally...but not all!

Love it keep up the great work.

Elián Maricón said...

great post!

Monkey Wrench said...

I thank you all very kindly for your remarks!! good to get done with those damn final papers, too!


The Clandestine Samurai said...

Here, I'd have to disagree. These are things people can do, but won't. There are many irrational people who will turn calm, civilized living into chaos.

Monkey Wrench said...

Not all people will snap to this way of thinking. That is why a social revolution is necessary before we undergo a 'political' one of this nature.

When this social revolution is realized, then these ideas will come into use, and can replace the archaic forms of social control we have today (police). What we need to do now is live the revolution as we would want it in our everyday lives, so we can demonstrate what can be an eventual global attitude.