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In 2016, I wrote a post about Race, Class, and the Police, and in the wake of Amy Cooper, George Floyd, and Regis Korchinski-Paquet, I think most of it remains relevant. However, I get a sense of fatalism or determinism in it now, the idea that real social justice can’t be approached until the revolution, which gives the wrong impression of what must be done now. I would add to the post’s practical prescription of banning guns the immediate programme of defunding the police, which it seems to me would have the immediate benefit of forcing the state to at least approach its need for discipline and violent oppression in some other or new way.

Additionally, since I wrote that post I read Federici’s Caliban and the Witch which does an amazing job exposing the necessity of anti-Black racism, misogyny, Indigenous dispossession and all the other mechanisms of “primitive accumulation”, and the ways in which those mechanisms continue to operate today.


Sam Popowich

Discovery and Web Services Librarian, University of Alberta

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