13355455, thanks for posting! my homie is a poc surrogate for sanders too. |
Posted by rawsouthpaw, Mon Nov-11-19 02:35 PM
and hopes to publish in jacobin as well.
great passage here:
By contrast, Bernie is all about it. It’s right there in his slogan, “Not Me, Us.” And he doesn’t just mean a mobilizing to get him elected. He says all the time that this movement needs to fight for its demands while he’s in office.
To that end, he has made an effort to build relationships with movements that he doesn’t already have strong ties with. For example, he’s been extremely open to taking up the demands that have been put forward by Black Lives Matter activists, specifically around criminal justice, right?
I’m going to tell you a true story. I had just joined the Bernie Sanders campaign as a surrogate, and I was sent his criminal justice platform when it was already 98 percent complete. So I looked at it, and as I read the Google Doc, I began putting comments in the sidebar for things that I didn’t see reflected. As I read the document, I had to click resolve on all of the comments because they were all referenced later in the Doc.
And as I kept reading, I got emotional. I started calling people who I couldn’t show the platform to yet, and telling them, “You’re going to almost cry when you see it.” There were things on there that we’ve been talking about for years. There were things on there that I hadn’t even thought of.
I have it in front of me. Let’s look at what we have here. Banning for-profit prisons. You know, 100 percent of the juvenile facilities in the state of Florida are private. Making phone calls and other communications free. Unless you’re doing prison work and going inside prisons, you don’t even know how important this is. Ending cash bail. How long has the movement been cobbling together dollars to bail mothers out on Black Mama’s Bail Out Day? A non–law enforcement response system. Abolishing the death penalty. Ending the war on drugs. I could go on.
When we’re talking about the criminal justice system, we’re talking about a system by which capital is able to hide labor that is not being able to be used. Plantation owners at least had a small amount of reason to preserve the life or the ability of a slave to do work. It didn’t mean that they weren’t heinous and brutal, but if a person is a piece of equipment for you, then you have some interest in preserving that equipment. The prison system has no such considerations, and is one of the most evil and inhumane systems that we’ve ever seen in the history of humanity. And Bernie’s talking about tearing it up by the roots.
So to answer your question directly, yes, Bernie’s criminal justice platform responds to the demands of a movement that has been in the streets for the last five years, and also the demands of people who have been working for the last forty or fifty years to end solitary confinement or making sure that kids under eighteen don’t go to jail. His criminal justice platform is an amazing example of a campaign that is responsive to a movement, in a way that Sanders rarely gets credit for.
I am an abolitionist. Bernie’s platform goes farther than any other candidate’s on this issue and, while it is not abolition, it seriously diminishes the power of police and prisons in the lives of our people.