Innocent African Americans and other minorities have been falsely arrested, beaten, and killed by racist cops across America. The Black Lives Matter movement was founded to oppose this racist violence and false criminalization. While it’s faced criticism on a variety of fronts…it’s clear that the BLM movement is necessary to preserve, defend, and reestablish civil rights in the United States.
Mapping Police Violence is a collaborative research effort that collects data on nationwide police killings to determine the impact on communities. They report that in 2015, police murdered at least 102 unarmed African Americans. This is about 2 murders a week. In fact, nearly 1 in 3 African Americans killed by police were unarmed. While African Americans make up on 13% of the American population…unarmed African Americans accounting for 37% of police killings in 2015. In 2015, they’re killed at five times the rate as unarmed whites. Yet, officers were criminally charged in less than 10% of these killings. Only less than 2% of these officers were convicted.
It’s because white supremacists have infiltrated and co-opted police departments around the country with the help of the FBI.
The FBI admits its known that white supremacists and other domestic extremists have been infiltrating law enforcement for a long time. In 2006, The FBI, published the FBI “White Supremacist Infiltration of Law Enforcement Report.”
While heavily redacted, it finds:
White Supremacist groups have historically engaged in strategic efforts to infiltrate and recruit from law enforcement communities…
White Supremacist presence among law enforcement personnel is a concern due to the access they may possess to restricted areas vulnerable to sabotage and to elected officials or protected person whom they could see and potential targets for violence….
The intelligence acquired through the successful infiltration of law enforcement by one white supremacist group can benefit other groups due to the multiple allegiances white supremacists typically hold.
White supremacist police officers even have their own term for themselves. In late 2004, the FBI learned these officers were called “Ghost Skins” in the white supremacist community. This term is used to describe racists who avoid overt displays of racism to blend into society and advance white supremacist causes. They’re told to act as double agents by offering information to the FBI on racist groups in order to gain access to government agencies investigating racism.
Sadly, this is nothing new. In October 1991, the Los Angeles Times reported that a Federal Judge found that neo nazis formed a gang in the LA County Sheriff’s Department that committed terrorist attacks against minorities…with the full knowledge and approval of their superiors. They called their gang the Vikings.
In 2009, shortly after Obama took office, Wired reports that Daryl Johnson, a DHS analyst, tried to sound the alarm when he authored a reported entitled: “Right-Wing Extremism.” DHS repudiated him and, in 2010, dissolved his team…leaving him without a job.
According to the Intercept, most police departments don’t screen for hate group membership during the hiring process. In fact, when they’re discovered as racists and fired…they’re rehired by other departments…even when guilty of misconduct.
Further, the FBI admits that even when a racist police officer is identified by the FBI as a known or suspected terrorist and placed on an official watch list, they can conceal this officer’s racism from the National Crime Information Center database by designating that racist as a “silent hit.” This means that if any government agency searches the Database for white supremacists, that racist’s name won’t come up…thanks to FBI concealment.
While this database can potentially be one of the most effective domestic counter-terrorism and law enforcement tools the United States has, the FBI admits to undermining it to conceal racist cops.
When everyone became complacent during the Obama administration…white supremacists were silently gaining power within police departments around the country. If they’ve infiltrated police departments around the country…what other agencies have been silently co-opted by their racism?
Now racist police officers have more power than ever….they’re able to commit murder against African Americans and other minorities, without consequence. Oftentimes, they get a medal for doing so. As long as the FBI continues to help conceal known white supremacist cops and others from official databases, our communities can never truly be safe.
While the backlash to opposing this racism is pervasive, The FBI’s complicity demonstrates that the Black Lives Matter movement…even if I don’t always agree with their tactics…is every American’s movement.
Independent writer, Bob Lewis (me) is a father of four, grandfather of two, who lives in Washington State.
Read his blog here