PEOPLES RESISTANCE FORCES END TO STOP AND FRISK POLICY! STRUGGLE AGAINST COLONIAL OCCUPATION MUST INTENSIFY!
The recent decision of the U.S. court system to characterize “stop and frisk” as unconstitutional was purely a political question. It was a response to the mass resistance of Africans and other oppressed peoples to the policy of stop and frisk and its immediate effects. It was a decision that came down just days before the highly anticipated Black is Back led March for Black Justice, through which the pro-independence sector of the African Liberation Movement in the U.S. aims to claim ideological and political leadership over the struggle against police brutality, harassment and all other manifestations of the colonial military occupation of the African community, particularly by the police.
This recent decision was an attempt on the part of the U.S. colonial state, to prevent that resistance from “getting out of hand”. It was a case of “if you can’t beat ’em join ’em”.
The fact is however, that the constitutionality of stop and frisk was never the issue. As Chairman Omali Yeshitela teaches us, the law and the constitution are not policies based in moral absolutes. They are political doctrine. They are the opinions of the ruling class of any given society.
The idea that stop and frisk is problematic is problematic only because it is unconstitutional is an attempt to legitimize the same legal system which has done nothing but attack the African community for 500 years. It is an attempt to prevent Africans from coming to the understanding that there has never been a time when we were not being stopped and frisked, killed, raped, kidnapped, extorted and robbed by this system and this government. It is an attempt to prevent Africans from coming to the conclusion that the solution will not come from our oppressor’s government, but through revolutionary struggle led by revolutionary organization.
We cannot forget that this country and worldwide social system of parasitic capitalism as a whole, was built on slavery and colonialism. It was born out of a vicious military imperialist assault on Africa and other oppressed nations.
At one point slavery was legal. And it still is. This is because the slave master was and continues to be the ruling class of this society. Therefore, under a system based in slavery and colonialism, all law will essentially be an extension of the political and economic interests of the slave master and the colonizer.
Even before the term “stop and frisk” was invented the colonial police forces were stopping and frisking Africans in this country and worldwide. Sometimes it was called apartheid and the pass laws. Sometimes it was called “racial profiling”. Sometimes it was called “Jim Crow”. Sometimes it was called the search and capture of runaway slaves. Sometimes it was called “pigs terrorizing our communities.” But it has always been, objectively speaking, a colonial military occupation of the African community which has ALWAYS functioned without regard for what the law may say at any given time.
The pig that murdered Ramarley Graham clearly was in violation of several “laws”. However, his acts were sanctioned by the courts. This is because, at the end of the day, the state rules and maintains its domination over oppressed peoples with the gun, not with laws. In this regard, the state is a dictatorship, which rules without regard for law.
The fundamental responsibility of the state in any society is to maintain the status quo. This is no less true of the capitalist-colonial state, which was built out of the need to protect the system in which the vast wealth enjoyed by colonial white power is stolen from African and other oppressed peoples.
Therefore, the fundamental question has always been the fact that a foreign and hostile power has dominated the lives and affairs of African people. As stated in Point #8 of the working platform of the African People’s Socialist Party:
“We believe that the various U.S. police agencies which occupy our communities are arms of the U.S. colonialist state which is responsible for keeping our people enslaved and terrorized. We believe that the U.S. police agencies do not serve us, but instead represent the first line of U.S. defense against the just struggle of our people for peace, dignity, and socialist democracy. Therefore, we believe the U.S. police is an illegitimate standing army, a colonial army in the African community and must withdraw immediately from our community, to be replaced by our liberation forces whose struggles in defense of our community and against our oppression demonstrate their loyalty to our community and their willingness to serve in its interest.”
Today, the Anti-Stop and Frisk Movement is confronted with a critical question: will it cease to exist now that stop and frisk (at least in name) will cease to exist? Or will it deepen its commitment to end the effects of stop and frisk, effects which are caused by the overall colonial police occupation of the African community.
Perhaps the answer to this question will come in the next period of struggle, as we learn that the police will continue to “stop and frisk” thousands of Africans every day, despite the repeal of stop and risk as a formal policy.
For the International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement the question has always been clear. The struggle is not one for reform of U.S. colonial law and/or policy. The struggle is to obtain the power necessary to create our law, through which our oppressors and exploiters are criminalized. The struggle is to build the power over our own police, prisons and courts.
This goal is NOT unattainable. The same forces whose organized resistance made it necessary for the state to retreat from the “stop and frisk” police can build a movement to make the state retreat from its occupation of the African and Latino community, period.
Therefore, let our mantra now become STOP COLONIAL OCCUPATION OF THE AFRICAN COMMUNITY! STOP IMPERIALISM! STOP PARASITIC CAPITALISM!
Let us consider this factor as we move forward towards the upcoming Black is Back Coalition led Weekend of African Resistance. On Saturday, August 17 the activities will begin with the March and Rally for Black Justice. This march will be followed by the first day of the Black is Back’s Annual National Conference, the theme of which is “From Trayvon Martin to Stop and Frisk! From COINTELPRO to Black Mis-Leadership! Resist the U.S. Govt War Against African People!”
Join us as we continue to build the resistance!