Blood On Their Hands — The Racist History of Modern Police Unions

[During the Occupy Movement against the “1 %”, many activists were ambivalent about or opposed to including such issues as “stopping police killings” and “ending mass incarceration”, because some organizers insisted on including the police (“unionized workers”) in the over-broad concept of the “99 %”  —  thereby siding with police repression and state-sponsored violence against Black and Brown people.  This article breaks down some of the history of these police unions and how they ensure I’m,unity and prevent accountability for police who murder.  —  Frontlines ed.]
by Flint Taylor, In These Times, January 14, 2015

Police unions have always played a powerful role in defending cops—no matter how brutal and racist their actions. (Ben Musseig / Flickr)

Outraged by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s statements concerning the killing of Eric Garner, Patrick Lynch, the longtime leader of the New York City Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association (PBA), the NYPD’s officers union, recently made the outrageous assertion that the Mayor had “blood on his hands” for the murder of the two NYPD officers.

In Milwaukee this past fall, the Police Association called for, and obtained, a vote of no confidence in MPD Chief Ed Flynn after he fired the officer who shot and killed Dontre Hamilton, an unarmed African American; subsequently, the union’s leader, Mike Crivello, praised the District Attorney when he announced that he would not bring charges against the officer.

In Chicago, the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), a longtime supporter of racist police torturer Jon Burge, is now seeking to circumvent court orders that preserve and make public the police misconduct files of repeater cops such as Burge, by seeking to enforce a police contract provision that calls for the destruction of the files after seven years.  And in a show of solidarity with the killer of Michael Brown, Chicago’s FOP is soliciting contributions to the Darren Wilson defense fund on its website.

Such reactionary actions by police unions are not new, but are a fundamental component of their history, particularly since they came to prominence in the wake of the civil rights movement. These organizations have played a powerful role in defending the police, no matter how outrageous and racist their actions, and in resisting all manner of police reforms. Continue reading

US: For decades, Chicago Police tortured many Black men; cop now sentenced to 4 1/2 years

// //
Quantcast

Jon Burge Sentenced To 4 1/2 Years In Prison: Convicted Of Lying About Police Torture

KAREN HAWKINS

01/21/11

CHICAGO — Decades after young black men in Chicago first began claiming that a white policeman shocked, burned and suffocated them to get confessions, former officer Jon Burge is headed to federal prison.

He goes to serve to 4 1/2 years behind bars not as the decorated, tough detective who rose quickly in the department, but as a cancer patient with a drinking problem who is, by his own admission, broken. His name has become synonymous with out-of-control police in the country’s third-largest city.

U.S. District Judge Joan Lefkow sentenced Burge on Friday, bringing an end to an ugly chapter in the city’s racially charged history after he was convicted last summer of lying about the torture of suspects.

Dozens of people – almost all of them black men – claimed for decades that Burge and his officers tortured them into confessing to crimes ranging from armed robbery to murder. Continue reading