‘Activists aren’t PR firms for politicians’: New lawmakers reject Obama’s take on defunding police

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      eridani
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      https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/12/2/1999454/-Lawmakers-push-back-when-Obama-criticizes-defund-the-police-as-snappy-slogan-that-isolates

      Rep. Cori Bush, of Missouri referenced Michael Brown and Breonna Taylor, other Black people killed at the hands of police, in a tweet she sent Tuesday. Brown, an 18-year-old Black man, was shot at least six times and killed by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri. Despite the common narrative that Brown was suspected of robbing a convenience store, officers admitted they had no knowledge Brown was a robbery suspect and had only stopped him for walking in the street. The situation escalated, and his body was left in the street for four hours on Aug. 9, 2014, The Associated Press reported. Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old emergency medical technician, was sleeping on March 13 when Kentucky police who had obtained a “no-knock” drug warrant bashed in her door and shot her eight times even though no drugs were found in her apartment and the person authorities were searching for was already in custody in Louisville that night.

      “With all due respect, Mr. President—let’s talk about losing people,” Bush said in her tweet. “We lost Michael Brown Jr. We lost Breonna Taylor. We’re losing our loved ones to police violence. It’s not a slogan. It’s a mandate for keeping our people alive. Defund the police.”

      Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez didn’t name any names, but she said in a Twitter thread Wednesday that the point of protesting is to make people uncomfortable. “What if activists aren’t PR firms for politicians & their demands are bc police budgets are exploding, community resources are shrinking to bankroll it, & ppl brought this up for ages but it wasn’t until they said ‘defund’ that comfortable people started paying attn to brutality,” she said. “The thing that critics of activists don’t get is that they tried playing the ‘polite language’ policy game and all it did was make them easier to ignore. It wasn’t until they made folks uncomfortable that there was traction to do ANYTHING even if it wasn’t their full demands.”

      In the interview, Obama also said the Democratic Party needs to focus more on promoting young people. He directly named Ocasio-Cortez after she was only asked to deliver a one-minute prerecorded speech during the Democratic National Convention. “We stick so long with the same ole folks and don’t make room for new voices,” Obama said. “You know the Democratic National Convention, I thought, was really successful considering the pandemic, but, you know, the fact that an AOC only got what, three minutes or five minutes, when she speaks to a broad section of young people who are interested in what she has to say even if they don’t agree with everything she says.”

      Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

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