NYPD Burns Bodycams

The NYPD is recalling nearly 3000 body cameras used by New York pigs after an apparent malfunction caused one to combust. Boot-licking bureaucrats wasted no time in releasing a statement on the “paramount importance” placed on officer safety, and that they would immediately recall all bodycams from the particular manufacturer. They say it is purely an issue of security, but even some of their own have cast doubt on that explanation. The pig-commander in Pittsburgh, Ed Trapp, whose occupation forces utilize the same manufacturer, responded to the hyperventilation in New York: “Anything that has a lithium battery in it, there is some risk to it, whether it’s your cell phone or a flashlight or anything else, but those have been so thoroughly tested, I’m pretty confident in them.”

So what is really going on? The insinuation from Pittsburgh is that the NY reaction is an alarmist response, attempting to create anxiety in the media, but why? The likely explanation is a deliberate move by the NY bureaucracy to remedy the tensions existing between the city bureaucrats and the vicious anxieties of the pigs. This contradiction was epitomized by NY pigs literally turning their backs on Mayor de Blasio during his speech at the funeral of one of their own. The paras see the increasing token regulation placed on their activity as burdensome and even deadly to them and their interests, and while the bureaucracy has required them to maintain peace, they know that they also require the loyalty of their foot-soldiers.

That is why, when the opportunity presented itself in the form of a malfunctioning body camera, they saw an opportunity to reinforce their relationship with a move more symbolic than practical. Their message upon recalling the cameras was “[n]othing is more important than the safety of our officers…”, a common refrain heard from the choir of boot-lickers in the defense of officers caught murdering and intimidating unarmed people. The message serves a two-fold purpose: first, to reassure the officers that the civilian authorities still back them, and secondly to generate an alarmist reaction to body cameras in general as a “safety risk” for police officers. Ultimately, they would like to see them all removed for good.

As communists, we know that no simple piece of equipment will ever fundamentally alter the role of the pigs as the armed enforcers of capitalism-imperialism. Certainly, bodycams or not, the police have continued to abuse, harass and murder innocent people, especially of the oppressed nationalities. That said, the attempt to remove these restrictions, and to un-muzzle the attack-dogs of the bourgeois state is a signal that a general offensive is on the horizon. Imperialism is in crisis, and no doubt the bourgeoisie requires something sharper than a social contract if they are to come out ahead.

Therefore we should oppose these alarmist measures, and aim our propaganda at the lies of the NYPD and other departments attempting to justify the removal of bodycams from their occupation troops. The true safety concern is among the people who are routinely victimized by the pigs, and who will surely continue to be, now without any evidence to their cause—not that anything stopped the paras from disabling the cameras when it suited them. Moreover, we should prepare for the reality the bureaucrats are signaling, which has implications far beyond the “accountability” of their paramilitaries. Let those know who do not already, and focus the knowledge of those who do: the police are occupiers; enemies of the people. If we are to be free of the violence we fear from them, we must make ourselves free of them.

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Imperialism, Media & Culture, News and Analysis, Police Terror, Prisons, Strategy, Theory, US/Canada


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