Joi Ito / CC-BY-2.0

Following the announcement Tuesday that New York Police Department Commissioner Bill Bratton intends to resign next month, Guardian columnist Steven Thrasher wrote supportively of one of the audacious goals of Millions March NYC: the defunding of police departments across the country and the redirection of those funds to communities—especially black and brown ones—that have been excluded from the nation’s prosperity.

“My professor friend AJ and I led a walking tour of college students earlier this week about protest and policing in New York City,” Thrasher began in a column published Wednesday. “Between our stop at One Police Plaza, where ‘broken windows’ policing was unleashed on our city, and the site of Eric Garner’s death on Staten Island, we stopped at the newest occupation in town at City Hall Park.”

Mayor Bill de Blasio had just announced police commissioner Bill Bratton’s resignation as we walked through the park, quickly achieving one of the occupying group’s three ambitious goals when they appeared on Monday. The other two call for defunding the NYPD and using some of that money for reparations for survivors of “police terrorism”.

The group, Millions March NYC, makes a solid point: it is imperative to defund police departments across the country immediately, redirecting that money instead to black futures and the marginalized. Because while reparations paid to next of kin for police abuse is already a billion-dollar business, there is no need for anyone to be executed in the first place.

As Millions March accurately explains, “Policing is a violent, anti­-black institution that originated as slave patrols and expanded into the domestic occupying force seen today in working­ class communities and communities of color.”

Policing doesn’t work.

Continue reading here.

—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.


If you're reading this, you probably already know that non-profit, independent journalism is under threat worldwide. Independent news sites are overshadowed by larger heavily funded mainstream media that inundate us with hype and noise that barely scratch the surface. We believe that our readers deserve to know the full story. Truthdig writers bravely dig beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that tells you what’s really happening and who’s rolling up their sleeves to do something about it.

Like you, we believe a well-informed public that doesn’t have blind faith in the status quo can help change the world. Your contribution of as little as $5 monthly or $35 annually will make you a groundbreaking member and lays the foundation of our work.