Toronto Media Co-op

Local Independent News

More independent news:
Do you want free independent news delivered weekly? sign up now
Can you support independent journalists with $5? donate today!
Not reviewed by Toronto Media Co-op editors. copyeditedfact checked [?]

Judy Rebick Supports Police Violence --Why is she speaking at a Jail Solidarity Rally?

stephen ledrew interviews judy rebick on CP24


Stephen LeDrew interviewing Judy Rebrick.

She very clearly demonstrates her support of police violence -as long as it's targeted at people she personally disagrees with. This is anti-solidarity. And it's an insult to anyone who engaged in or supported any kind of direct action at or around the Toronto G20.

The full interview can be seen here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7iaG1H0pDxY

Interviewer:
Why didn’t they arrest him?
Judy:
What they could have done is arrest the black block at the beginning before they had a chance to be part of a bigger crowd and that’s what they didn’t do.

Interviewer:
Judy you have to be very very cynical to say that police let them go to justify the expense

Judy:
Yeah. It’s not that I’m cynical, I am critical because I did see an agent provocateur in motebello and I did see police over react in Quebec city but now I’m talking about last night I wasn’t sure what happened but when i looked this morning and I saw eye witness reports and video videos of what happened and I saw a car burning with a line of riot police watching it burn with an individual alone who had obviously been involved in the burning and not arresting him I have to ask some serious questions and I think you should be asking some serious questions

Interviewer:
…that individual was arrested this morning

Judy:
This morning, why wasn’t he arrested yesterday before he did more damage?

Etc.

So the next time there’s a demonstration will you be an advisor to the police and tell them who’s a good protester and who not ?

I’m not going to be an advisor, but they should know what they are doing,  the Toronto police know what they’re doing . I don’t know what’s going on all I know is they claim they didn’t know what the blackblock was doing, which I also don’t believe because I know they had informers and then even if they didn’t know I think they are incompetent then they’re either incompetent or they’re up to something

 


Socialize:
Want more grassroots coverage?
Join the Media Co-op today.
351 words

Comments

Misrepresenting Rebick's Point

Her point is a conditional one:

IF the police really were concerned with controlling people engaging in property damage, THEN they should have:
- arrested the Black Bloc before shit went down (because she presumes they have the intel)
- arrested the people smashing windows and the cop car
- put out the fire in the car
- not beaten and detained the hundreds of people who were not engaging in property damage.

Whether or not we agree with her labelling property damage "violence" is another matter. Her point is a good one: the media fed into police plans for justifying their billion buckeroos.

On Misrepresenting Rebick's Point

I agree her point is primarily directed at the police exploitaion of black block presence to justify mass violence and repression of unrelated people, but in doing so she very clearly threw  the black block under the bus -and anyone who could be assoicated with them. Her interview does nothing to dispell the police and state attempt to divide and conquer resistance movements by creating a "good protester" "bad protester" dynamic, in fact her statements seem to promote just that.

What i suggest is that people close to her challenge her on this and ask her directly -"do you think the black block, or anyone associated with direct action/vandalism should have been arrested?"

"Is police violence legitimate when it's directed at protest methods you disagree with?"

If she is going to be speaking for prisoner solidarity and against police repression of resistance, she needs to be challenged on these points.

Well put. She would probably

Well put. She would probably answer yes, without remorse. But she does need to be asked.

I am worried about how many people (less known than Judy Rebick), also bring up the same kind of things. In so many ways, - even simply by labelling a video 'people attack peaceful protesters'. People are understandably upset because they weren't expecting to be beaten up and arrested doing what they usually consider permitted. But maybe we need to wonder why the rules have changed. Why are peaceful protesters now legitimate targets? What can these people learn about the police state? I hope they do learn something. What I see now is a lot of  being pissed at the police, not for being the police, but for 'overreacting'. Again, legitimate and illegitimate protesters. Allows people to still believe in democracy and the rule of law, which is convenient.

I hope what I say is understandable, I don't write really well in english. Also I am touched by all this, and afraid of the predictable backlash to so called violent protesters. I seee it lurking everywhere, in all the ways we will have to say 'I wasn't doing anything wrong, HE was, SHE was! give me back my legitimacy status!'

Champagne Socialist

Judy Rebick's latest talking point theme is "let's make the political personal". Meanwhile she flies all over the world in jet planes to attend every summit and conference where the words "justice" and "environment" appear.

I don't doubt her generally progressive conviction or that she is a compassionate liberal, but she is from the old-school rank-and-file privilege set, coordinator class, and she is more intellectually aware than she is actually aware, in my opinion.

At the rally today she reminded everyone that she marched forty years ago to stop the war in Viet Nam. And that is to be applauded. But fast forward forty years and so many of us can now appreciate the inefficacy of these tactics. They did well to launch "brand name" activists to podium punditry and executive roles in NGO's but we don't seem to be any better off now, in fact the wheel is fast slipping and we are losing control. As though we have been asleep at the wheel.

I agree that it was an unfortunate match-up to present Judy Rebick as a speaker on behalf of a grassoots movement. Would happily discuss and/or debate this matter further with Judy, if she would be interested? I really do think that it is time to air this matter, as our movements and momentums are too often saddled with the weight of old-school activists and their redundant tactics and property/ownership paradigms. Their own personal comfort levels extinguish the fire that is needed for these times.

 

 

 

She speaks truth, to be fair

To note, Judy's analysis here is sound, so far as the police tactics go. And upon review of her interview on CP24, I think she offers one of the more critical insights to be found anywhere on the mainstream channels.

 

If the truth is some weird twisted thing

No actually she is not telling the truth. Her facts are unfounded and her logic is faulty.

This creature, Judy Rebick,

This creature, Judy Rebick, is a very integrated folk. She probably loves the world she live in, but know that need some changes. She's very good to exercice a in between comment between a progressive and police one. She's in the side of the progressive police as the NDP. But she still a kind of cop, a old fucker that are condemning us to police violence. She's a piece of this general repression. She deserve a lot of shit.

her speach turned out ok

Her speech turned out ok, righ to the very end, i thought maybe i should give her a second chance, she even mentioned that it's ok to have differennt forms of resistance. Then she drops it. She coops indigenous resistance to promote her own personal agenda of enforcing passifivism on resistance movements. Coming from a settler, i found her wrap up comment about "strong and proud natives with their fists up in air proving we don't need to [garbled] resort to violence" just a tad paternalistic --and by 'tad' i mean a lot.

eye witness report: cop cars likely abandoned intentionally

I was on Queen Street outside Steve's Music where two cop cars were abandoned. I was with a camera, documenting the events of the day, as usual. I intentionally kept my camera off the cars when they were ultimately targeted for vandalism, appreciating full-well that any captured footage might end up in the wrong hands and be used against those perpetrators. In some ways now I regret not having kept the tape rolling. Here's what I experienced:

A lot of shit had been going down on that street, between stand-offs with the kevlar kop-outs, lots of kettling, crowd control, push-backs, etc. When I first came across those cars--after police had finally withdrew from formation blocking the street--they were eerily abandoned and, despite the general mayhem lingering about, they were relatively unscathed. I seem to remember some graffitti sprayed on one, but they were otherwise not smashed, doors were unopened, they were not burned.

Some unusual features did immediately capture my attention: The digital computer panels normally installed between the driver and front passenger seats were nowhere to be found. There was evidence to suggest that maybe the lid of the gas tank of one car (the one I noticed anyway) was removed or opened. And anyone would have to wonder why they were left there in the first place, given that the police clearly controlled the road just moments before.

I then witnessed the actual vandalism that ensued. Some very unlikely candidates were the perpetrators. One worked very casually to lift a metal gas lid from its seal in the road. It was about 8" in diameter, set in the asphalt of the road directly beside one of the cars. This fellow was not dressed in any way to suggest that he was engaged in the rallies or protests as an activist or otherwise. (By this I mean that he was not your typical "anarchist protester" AS PROFILED BY COPS: eg. bandana, black bag, 18-25 yrs., etc. but rather he was very "straight" looking-- button-down short-sleeved shirt, clean crisp jeans with a belt...not chanting slogans or anti-capitalist rhetoric...)

Cops at this time were not in outright lined formations but they were still milling about within range. People milling about at this time were mostly by-standers left over from the previous stand-off. Non-protester dude eventually lifted the metal cap out of the ground and then smashed the side window of the car. Others began to stomp on the cars thereafter, some went inside and operated the horns and bleeping sirens. One "deranged" character led much of the show, and he was the one who ultimately set fire to one of the cars, presumably while attempting to light himself on fire, some time later. His story has been covered by mainstream media outlets, including his arrest. I did not witness the lighting of the car but only the shenanigans leading up to it. Hard to guess his role in all of this, but suffice to say he was not participating as a dedicated activist or protester.

Again, cops were milling about, not far from where this all was taking place. About ten minutes prior they had disengaged from formation where they were holding the street just twenty metres away from this very location. Further, there was an obvious, plainclothed undercover standing all the while stationed outside of the H&M(?) nearby. I will post a photo of this fellow in a story soon on this site. I have no doubt about his role as an undercover.

So what to make of all this? Clearly suspicious at best. If there is one thing those kops are good at it's how to take and hold space. Military manoueveurs. They apply formations, utilize intersections. They know better than to drive vehicles forward into the middle of a block with no clear space for retreat. When they do move in vehicles they make sure to have a clear way out. If their way is blocked then they clear it, by force if necessary.

Sure they can screw up, get caught off guard, etc. I've seen that happen on other occassions, in other actions. But in those circumstances there is prevailing chaos and disorder. Whereas these police actions suggested formal, militarized rule and order. While they clearly haven't a clue as to who we are, as protesters and activists, they do know how to follow orders and control space. I doubt very much that they gave up those cars unintentionally. If even out of dumb-ass kop pride they would have gladly gone back to beat up on some heads rather than let their cars burn. Unless they had other plans for them.

 

 

 

Building a broad based movement to free all political prisoners

I'm not going to defend Rebick's position. I don't agree with her any more than you do. I think it's good to criticize her liberal analysis of the police as the cops did in fact target and preemptively arrest organizers and militants before the Saturday protests.

Hopefully such state abductions will be found to have been unlawful, but I'm not holding my breath. I also doubt that Rebick would ask anyone to shut the fuck up about any criticism of her positions.

That said, is there a place for such prominent people, complete with their faulty analysis, to give support to the movement to free our political prisoners? Does such support strengthen the movement to free them? Do they have a place speaking at solidarity rallies and signing statements demanding the release of all political prisoners and an end to the targeting of anarchists?

I would argue that they do. They help build a broader base of support for the release of our prisoners and should be welcomed voices that speak to frankly a larger constituency than the far-left and anarchist movement currently has.

That said, it is our job to ensure that the messages of anarchists and anti-capitalists, especially those of the political prisoners still being held, are also heard loud and clear in the solidarity movement to free them and get all the charges dropped.

Free all political prisoners now!

Join the media co-op today
Things the Media Co-op does: Support
Things the Media Co-op does: Report
Things the Media Co-op does: Network
Things the Media Co-op does: Educate
Things the Media Co-op does: Discover
Things the Media Co-op does: Cooperate
Things the Media Co-op does: Build
Things the Media Co-op does: Amplify

User login


Google+
Subscribe to the Dominion $25/year

The Media Co-op's flagship publication features in-depth reporting, original art, and the best grassroots news from across Canada and beyond. Sign up now!