Saturday’s kick off to the Peaceful Streets Project in Fort Worth was informative and especially heartwarming for me. Based on the reception of the more than a dozen people attending, there appears to be at least three initial hubs for people to start organizing in the Metroplex. With almost the entire political spectrum represented, it goes to show the increasing awareness for the need of police accountability.
The aspect that most appeals to me is that we can build awareness and provide value to people in our communities by informing them of how to protect their rights. I think that serves as a way to build grassroots support and begin to solidify a culture of mutual respect.
One concern is whether a demand for police accountability, in some manner, legitimizes the police as an institution. If so, are the efforts to promote the ideals of a society that does not institutionalize aggression being undermined? I think it depends on how police accountability is gone about. In supporting the radical decentralization of political power, I can shed light on the bad aspects of police behavior and offer constructive alternatives for people to resolve disputes satisfactorily. The goal of police accountability is to bring the police (and the special interests they protect) to the same level of authority as everyone else, just as slogan “policing the police” implies.
For the next step, I am helping to coordinate Know Your Rights meetings in the Fort Worth area. For anyone else interested in participating, email PSP DFW to find out more.