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The PerChronicler
Edition 8 - Wednesday June 17,2020 - www.personalitycafe.com

My apologies for not posting a new version of the PerChronicler in the last two weeks. I didn't feel like a joke newspaper would be appropriate considering the protests happening in the US and in other parts of the world against police brutality. However, I've also felt like staying quiet isn't good either. So this edition of the PerChronicler is going to be more serious than previous editions.

There are lots of articles out there who can make these points far better than I could, but I wanted to just give a small summary of two points that show how institutionalized racism is propagated and how flawed the US law enforcement system is.

The infiltration of law enforcement by white supremacists
In October 2006, the FBI raised the alarm over white supremacist group's interest in infiltrating law enforcement or recruiting members of law enforcement. They also mentioned they became aware of the term "ghost skins", which was used by white supremacists to describe members who hide their beliefs to blend into society and advance white supremacist causes.

In 2009, after the election of Obama, the department of homeland security released a document warning of a resurgence of right wing extremism. They found that right wing extremists used the election to recruit new members and broaden their scope through propaganda, singling out disgruntled military veterans. A later study found that, of people indicted for far-right terrorism-related activities, 31% had military experience.

The document from the department of homeland security caused widespread backlash among conservatives, especially because of the implication that veterans might be involved. As a result, the DHS secretary disavowed the document and the agency's unit investigating right-wing extremism was largely dismantled, leaving only the FBI to investigate right-wing terrorism, with limited resources.

Law enforcement has a long history of white supremacy. It's origin can be traced back to the policing of slave patrols in the 18th and 19th centuries. More recently, going only 50 years back, law enforcement, particularly in the South, was filled with Klan members. And while the KKK is classified as a hate group by the US government, membership in the group is not illegal. Which is the case for all domestic hate or extremist groups.

A research from the non-profit organisation Reveal has shown that closed Facebook groups that promote right-wing extremist and white supremacist ideologies often have members that are in law enforcement. When law enforcement departments were confronted with proof of their members being part of these Facebook groups, only some of them decided to take action.

Interestingly, an investigation into extremists in the military resulted in the department of defense to impose stricter screenings, discharging those found to hold racist views.

Sources:

Law enforcement and domestic violence
Two studies from 1991 and 1992 reported that 40% of police officer families experience domestic violence. A third study of older and more experienced officers found a rate of 24%. In contrast to 10% of families in the general population, police officer families were therefore 2-4 times more likely to experience domestic violence.

A more recent study in 2013 noted a lack of available recent data surrounding police officers and domestic violence. Examining 324 cases of domestic violence involving officers, the researchers found that 281 officers from 226 law enforcement agencies were arrested for domestic violence. Of all the cases of police officers who were convicted of abuse, more than half kept their jobs.

Note that cases of domestic violence in police officer families are likely to be under-reported, as victims feat that their case would be handled by the colleagues of the offending officer, who would side with the officer.

A 1994 nationwide survey found that the most common discipline imposed for a sustained allegation of domestic violence was counselling. It also found that only 19% of departments indicated that officers would be fired after a second sustained allegation of domestic violence.

Sources:

Donating
If you want to donate, consider donating directly to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund or Race Forward. Also check out Ways To Help for more information.
There are also a lot of content creators giving away their proceeds to various charities. See for example Humble Fight for Racial Justice Bundle

Other countries
Of course the US isn't unique in its discrimination. There are many people all over the world who are discriminated against for how they look, what they believe in and/or who they are. These protests will probably come to an end, but that doesn't mean that we should stop fighting for all those who are oppressed in the world.
 
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