The Seattle Police Department decided to abandon one of their precincts in an effort to placate protesters after reportedly receiving threats that there would be attempts to burn it down. The leftists who seized the surrounding blocks of Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood renamed it the “Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone.” The Seattle Police Department in the “liberated” zone was renamed the “Seattle People Department.” The radical occupiers issued their ultimatums entitled “THE DEMANDS OF THE COLLECTIVE BLACK VOICES AT FREE CAPITOL HILL TO THE GOVERNMENT OF SEATTLE, WASHINGTON.” They referred to the Seattle Police Department as a “terrorist cell.” A prominent Seattle neighborhood has surrendered to anarchy and lawlessness.
Here are a few highlights from the occupiers’ set of demands, which they say must be met before they consider ending their occupation:
· “The Seattle Police Department and attached court system are beyond reform. We do not request reform, we demand abolition.” To eliminate any doubt, the “liberators” said they are demanding the elimination of “100% of funding.”
· “We demand a retrial of all People in Color currently serving a prison sentence for violent crime, by a jury of their peers in their community.”
· “We demand the abolition of imprisonment, generally speaking, but especially the abolition of both youth prisons and privately-owned, for-profit prisons.”
· “We demand in replacement of the current criminal justice system the creation of restorative/transformative accountability programs as a replacement for imprisonment.”
· “We demand autonomy be given to the people to create localized anti-crime systems.”
· “We demand free college for the people of the state of Washington, due to the overwhelming effect that education has on economic success, and the correlated overwhelming impact of poverty on people of color, as a form of reparations for the treatment of Black people in this state and country.”
· “We demand the hospitals and care facilities of Seattle employ black doctors and nurses specifically to help care for black patients.” In other words, racially segregated health care.
One of the occupiers intimidated a local Fox News affiliate reporter and a photographer trying to capture images of what was going on in the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone. Between curses, he yelled “Don’t let them get an inch of space” and “You ain’t getting no shots.”
A self-described “anarchist. abolish whiteness, capitalism, and civilization” eyewitness described the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone as “an area where state authority has been consciously rejected.” She added that “the police have been pushed out, and people are free to self-manage.”
Assistant Police Chief Deanna Nolette said that she had heard “anecdotally of citizens and businesses being asked to pay a fee to operate within this area,” which she described as “extortion.” There have also been reports of “citizen checkpoints” being set up in the area. Local rapper Raz Simone, reportedly one of the leaders of the occupiers, denied that there was any extortion. This is the same guy who, armed with an AK-47 and a pistol, has taken it upon himself to provide his own brand of unaccountable security for the “people.”
President Trump tweeted, “Radical Left Governor @JayInslee and the Mayor of Seattle are being taunted and played at a level that our great Country has never seen before. Take back your city NOW. If you don’t do it, I will. This is not a game.”
Seattle’s mayor, Jenny Durkan, apparently thinks it is a game. Instead of regaining control of her own city from the anarchists, Durkan responded, “Make us all safe. Go back to your bunker. #BlackLivesMatter.” Evidently, Durkan is not as concerned about protecting the lives of everyone else. Washington state Governor Jay Inslee tweeted, “A man who is totally incapable of governing should stay out of Washington state’s business.” This governor has been so clueless about developments in his own state that on June 10th he responded “that’s news to me” to a question about the occupied “Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone” in Washington state’s largest city.
Socialist Alternative Seattle councilwoman Kshama Sawant has been encouraging the anarchists. She declared, for example, that the takeover was a “victory” against “the militarized police force of the political establishment and the capitalist state.”
The lunatics are taking over the asylum, with Seattle in the vanguard. And the lunacy is spreading. Areas of Portland Oregon may become the next target for anarchists to occupy and build their own autonomous zone.
Calls are mounting around the country to defund the police. Minneapolis is already beginning down that path. “We committed to dismantling policing as we know it in the city of Minneapolis and to rebuild with our community a new model of public safety that actually keeps our community safe,” Council President Lisa Bender told CNN. When she was asked who should a person call if someone broke into that person’s home, Bender replied, “yes, I mean I hear that loud and clear from a lot of my neighbors. And I know — and myself, too, and I know that that comes from a place of privilege.”
“Black Lives Matter means defund the police,” the Washington D.C. branch of Black Lives Matter proclaimed. Not surprisingly Democrat-Socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is on board with defunding the police. Many of her House Democrat colleagues, on the other hand, tried to avoid the issue for the moment by proposing sweeping changes in policing methods and calling for the diversion of some funds allocated for the police to social programs. The Democratic presumptive nominee for president Joe Biden claimed that he is opposed to defunding the police. He is trying to avoid as long as he can offending the many mainstream Americans concerned about their safety who support some sensible police reform but not abolition of the police. However, the progressive base of the Democratic Party will continue to move Biden and the party’s congressional leadership towards the extreme position of police defunding. They already have moved the party leftward on such issues as Medicare-for-All, free college tuition, and the Green New Deal.
When Democrats in the Senate had the chance to go on record opposing calls to defund the police, Senate Democrat Minority Leader Chuck Schumer balked. Schumer decided on their behalf to block a resolution introduced on June 10th by Republican Senator Tom Cotton that called for justice for George Floyd while also opposing efforts to defund the police.
The non-binding resolution, which required unanimous consent to pass, acknowledged that “the United States has a troubled history of racism that includes slavery, the terror of lynch mobs, segregation, and Jim Crow, and that history leaves the United States with important work to accomplish.” It called Floyd’s death at the hands of Derek Chauvin, the now-former Minneapolis police officer who is under arrest for murder, a “horrific act that violated the public trust and was inconsistent with the values and conduct expected of law enforcement officers.” It added that “good law enforcement cannot exist without accountability and justice.”
At the same time, however, the resolution urged against throwing the baby out with the bathwater. It stated that “defunding the police would leave police departments understaffed and undertrained, while also increasing the risk of violent crime to the communities of the United States.” This should be a non-controversial statement for legislators to make in any sane civilized society. But it is too controversial for cowardly Schumer and his Democrat flock. They are too afraid of offending their party’s progressive base.
America’s house is divided between the majority who believe our constitutional republic is built on a strong foundation of ordered liberty worth preserving and a militant minority who believe it is built on a rotten foundation that must be completely dismantled. We can only hope that reason will prevail and America will be able to avoid another civil war.