This year has been a lot to handle. It’s the fourth year of a bumbling fascist as US President; a pandemic has killed 124,000 Americans and counting; there’s deepening economic misery for millions. And our city is at the epicenter of a global protest movement, kicked off by a Minneapolis cop casually pressing the life out of a man, while three other officers looked on and did nothing for nearly eight minutes.
You’ve got your pick of social, economic, and historical forces to explain how we got to this specific moment, with things spinning out of control. Choose one. Choose a little of each. In the midst of cascading disasters, it’s easy to lose track of it all. But we shouldn’t forget George Floyd, a black man who should still be alive. And we shouldn’t forget that the men responsible for taking his life were employees of the City of Minneapolis, acting ostensibly on our behalf.
Continue reading “Some Minneapolis City Council Members Double Down on Call to Replace a Failing System (That is Very Much Still in Effect as I Write This Headline)”
I don’t usually direct my evening walks through Uptown on a weekend, but on Saturday I had the expectation that something might happen. Friday night had been chaotic, even by Uptown standards (I watched from home on snapchat). Fireworks in the street outside the bars, street racing, tire burnouts, doing donuts in the intersection. Would it happen again? Would the police try to take control? I wanted to see.
Continue reading “With 24 hours to prepare, Minneapolis police fail to stop gunfight”
On Sunday, nine members of the Minneapolis City Council stood together on a stage with the words “Defund Police” draped across the front in giant letters. At a rally organized by Black Visions Collective and Reclaim the Block, City Council President Lisa Bender told the crowd, “Our efforts at incremental reform have failed… Our commitment is to end our city’s toxic relationship with the Minneapolis Police Department, to end policing as we know it.”
While this amounts to a veto-proof majority of the council, the nine haven’t yet developed or agreed to a specific plan to “Defund Police.” But the police murder of George Floyd has convinced them once and for all that MPD doesn’t actually make everyone safer — and is so broken that it can’t be reformed. The nine council members have committed to a year-long engagement process to determine how to replace the city’s broken system of public safety. This timeline puts the issue square in the middle of a city election year.
Continue reading “2021: The “Defund Police” Election in Minneapolis”