Sunday, June 14, 2020

Police Unions Exemplify The Nostrum About Fish Rotting From The Head


counterpunch |  Floyd’s alleged murder by a white Minneapolis police officer turned the city into the center of the “defund the police,” with nine of its councilmembers supporting this proposal.  Floyd’s death is about the hypocrisy on race in America, even with Democrats. But equally fascinating is how a Democratic Party city is going after the police union whom it blames for a history of officer shootings and use of excessive force against African-Americans.  Minneapolis’ police chief announced he would no longer negotiate with the union.  Minnesota’s Democratic Governor also locates much of the blame with the union.  Former Minneapolis Mayor RT Rybek sees the union as an obstacle to reform, and even other labor unions, such as the AFL-CIO are calling for the current head of the police union to resign.   In Minneapolis and across the country police unions are seen by members of the civil rights community as hostile to civil rights reform.

George Floyd’s death is perhaps the final fracturing of the Democratic Party,  labor, and the civil rights supporters.    Maybe this split needed to happen.  But as it does it bodes a dramatic turn in  party politics that complicates the electoral map for Democrats and progressive politics going forward.  Smart politicians, such as Donald Trump, see this opportunity and will surely exploit it in the 2020 election.