Police and the Poorer Sections of the Working Class

John Clarke, former major organizer of the Ontario Coalition Against Poverty (OCAP), recently wrote on Facebook:

I hate seeing cops persecute those they have targeted based on racism or the selection of the visibly poor. It’s difficult to play a useful role in these situations. I have had a couple of bad experiences where my efforts to provide support have backfired and the person under threat clearly wanted to try and resolve things without any help.

The reality of policing is that there are whole populations of people who don’t live in a society where basic rights and freedoms exist. They can be detained and interrogated at will by the police and they know that civil liberties don’t apply to them in practice.

The policing of the poor (polite liberal fictions aside) is one of the sharpest manifestations of class rule and an accurate understanding of the roots and nature of the police function will be shocking to those who live in the just and rational society of the future.

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