Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Exemplary Cop (Update)

The Montreal police force (SPVM), is known for its brutality and lack of accountability.

In this Rabble News report from March 2012, Stefan Christoff provided an overview of decades of injustice served upon the Montreal population, particularly members of communities that are not protected by their connections to social status, money, organized crime or political power. Some highlights:

Now widely used by the Montreal police, flash bang grenades are made by Defense Technologies, a subsidiary of the world's second largest arms manufacturer, BAE Systems.Flash bangs are rubber-encased devices that explode, creating a 175-decibel shock wave, while emitting a flash of light and releasing a charge of CS gas into the air. CS gas is a chemical irritant that burns the eyes, affects the respiratory system and can cause vomiting. 
According to Defense Technologies' official warning text on the exploding weapon, "this product may cause serious injury or death to you or others."
On March 15, police used sound grenades and CS gas on civilian protesters, weaponry that did in fact "cause serious injury" for 22-year-old student protester Grenier from Cégep de Saint-Jérôme, protesting for accessible post-secondary education.
Why are Montreal police deploying dangerous explosive devises against popular protests in 2012? Why are more serious questions not being asked in mainstream media coverage about this dangerous weaponry being deployed by Montreal police?

Fredy Villanueva, an 18-year-old youth from Montreal North, was killed by police in the summer of 2005, and his death is the subject of an ongoing struggle for justice led by the Villanueva family. 
To this day, no police officers involved in the Villanueva killing have been charged criminally or faced trial in relation to the shooting, despite a wealth of existing evidence on the topic. 
Villanueva's death inspired numerous underground hip-hop tracks in Montreal, with artists like Sans Pression and Dramatik directing verses against Montreal police shootings and racial profiling. 
In early January 2012, a police intervention at métro Bonaventure turned deadly when police shot and killed Farshad Mohammadi, a Kurdish refugee from Iran struggling with mental health issues and homelessness. The police killing quickly sparked protest in the city and police continue to keep secret a great deal of existing evidence and details surrounding the shooting. 
Since 1987, in Montreal, more than 60 people have been killed during police interventions, including Mario Hamel and Patrick Limoges, killed on the same morning by police bullets in June 2011.

And now Radio-Canada's report on the aberrant actions of a patroller, one Stéfanie Trudeau aka Badge 728 - captures the dysfunctional cop culture that flourishes within the rank and file of the SPVM. (Google translations here and here.) The CTV report is here.

The list of complaints against her is considerable.  It includes gratuitous violence.

Some may remember Matricule 728 from this GGI manifestation in May.

Trudeau may be exemplary but she is not unique.

UPDATE: The inevitable baying of sexist hounds has started, demanding her address and phone number to dox her so that others will inflict the physical harm they wish this woman to suffer.

This is harsh, and may recognize that a form of rehabilitation is required, for her and for all cops who behave thus.

But this is vile, as this one notes.

Josée Legault reminds us of the "rage à deux" that political discourse and police repression produce.

ADDED resource. From this tweet, more about the deleterious impact of cop culture.

TODAY'S UPDATE: My perspective was willfully misrepresented, with regard to outing and doxing Trudeau.  Read my original post.  I never suggested that the procedure used to deal with abusive cops should be more lenient for her.

Though it has been well-documented how social media has been used to transform specific women into targets for the rampant misogyny that festers at large, there are a few so-called pro-feminism men who persist in obdurate denial of this phenomenon and shriek about "gender stalinism" rather than acknowledge the reality. 

From Anita Sarkeesian to Amanda Todd, women and girls are violated online in specifically aggressive ways that men are not subjected to.  Are these threats carried out in real life?  Once a woman has been doxed, she is an open target.  

Food for thought: Whitney Phillips' piece in the Atlantic about Adrian Chen exposing  infamous Reddit moderator Violentacrez in a long profile. This is the product of a tenacious investigation into the many facets of this self-proclaimed troller as well as his role as the creator and moderator of the "Jailbait" and "CreepShots" forums. 

Phillips' reflection on trolling and its oft-denounced racist, homophobic and misogynist manifestations is a compelling and informative lecture.

Added: For those who can read French, this from Josée Legault must be read to understand the foundation and the connections that produced Matricule 728 and a cop culture amenable to political manipulation.
Grand merci to Miranda Nelson.


Godel Noodle said...

Dammit, Janet! What'd you have to go and gimme all this reading homework for? Ugh... It's gonna take me forever to get through and process all this stuff.

Part of me says thanks; part of me is having a little a temper tantrum because it just wants some light entertainment, and this seems like it might be a bit nuanced.

Anyway, I know I'm going to regret this, but where was your perspective was wilfully misrepresented? Yeah, just what I need...more text. But I do feel like I'm missing part of the story, here.

Oh! It's in French, right? Please say it's in French. And, like, really complicated French. I wouldn't stand a chance in hell of being able to read it, right? :-)

Can I just go back to hacking up malevolent alien creatures with lasers and mining tools? Sigh... That was so much fun.

deBeauxOs said...

In response to questions I raised in my original post, a number of reactionary tweets stated incorrectly that I'd said Trudeau should receive preferential treatment because she's a female cop.

I said no such thing.

Hateful tweets threatening her with harm, injury, physical violence and sexual assault were plentiful; I pointed out that doxing her could put her at risk if anyone wished to carry out the particular acts of violence expressed.

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