Police State Quotes

Quotes tagged as "police-state" Showing 1-30 of 109
C.S. Lewis
“I live in the Managerial Age, in a world of "Admin." The greatest evil is not now done in those sordid "dens of crime" that Dickens loved to paint. It is not done even in concentration camps and labour camps. In those we see its final result. But it is conceived and ordered (moved, seconded, carried, and minuted) in clean, carpeted, warmed and well-lighted offices, by quiet men with white collars and cut fingernails and smooth-shaven cheeks who do not need to raise their voices. Hence, naturally enough, my symbol for Hell is something like the bureaucracy of a police state or the office of a thoroughly nasty business concern."

[From the Preface]
C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters

Criss Jami
“A utopian system, when established by men, is likely to be synonymous with a dystopian depression. The only way for perfect peace by man is absolute control of all wrongs. Bully-cultures find this: with each and every mistake, another village idiot is shamed into nothingness and mindlessly shut down by the herd. This is a superficial peace made by force and by fear, one in which there is no freedom to breathe; and the reason it is impossible for man to maintain freedom and peace for everyone at the same time. Christ, on the other hand, transforms, instead of controls, by instilling his certain inner peace. This is the place where one realizes that only his holiness is and feels like true freedom, rather than like imprisonment, and, too, why Hell, I imagine, a magnified version of man's never-ending conflict between freedom and peace, would be the flesh's ultimate utopia - yet its ultimate regret.”
Criss Jami, Healology

Paul Joseph Watson
“The fact is that the modern implementation of the prison planet has far surpassed even Orwell’s 1984 and the only difference between our society and those fictionalized by Huxley, Orwell and others, is that the advertising techniques used to package the propaganda are a little more sophisticated on the surface.
Yet just a quick glance behind the curtain reveals that the age old tactics of manipulation of fear and manufactured consensus are still being used to force humanity into accepting the terms of its own imprisonment and in turn policing others within the prison without bars.”
Paul Joseph Watson

Christopher Hitchens
“Indifferent to truth, willing to use police-state tactics and vulgar libels against inconvenient witnesses, hopeless on health care, and flippant and fast and loose with national security: The case against Hillary Clinton for president is open-and-shut. Of course, against all these considerations you might prefer the newly fashionable and more media-weighty notion that if you don't show her enough appreciation, and after all she's done for us, she may cry.”
Christopher Hitchens

Terry Pratchett
“It always embarrassed Samuel Vimes when civilians tried to speak to him in what they thought was “policeman.” If it came to that, he hated thinking of them as civilians. What was a policeman, if not a civilian with a uniform and a badge? But they tended to use the term these days as a way of describing people who were not policemen. It was a dangerous habit: once policemen stopped being civilians the only other thing they could be was soldiers.”
Terry Pratchett, Snuff

“If a police officer encounters you in one of those moments, he or she has every right to ask you two simple questions. Memorize these two questions so you will not be tempted to answer any others:

Who are you?
What are you doing right here, right now?

If you are ever approached by a police officer with those two questions, and your God-given common sense tells you that the officer is being reasonable in asking for an explanation, don’t be a jerk.”
James Duane, You Have the Right to Remain Innocent

Kristian Williams
“As journalist Matt Taibbi recalls in his book The Divide: It’s become cliché by now, but since 2008, no high-ranking executive from any financial institution has gone to jail, not one, for any of the systemic crimes that wiped out 40 percent of the world’s wealth. Even now, after JP Morgan Chase agreed to a settlement north of $13 billion for a variety of offenses.… the basic principle held true: nobody went to jail. Not one person. (...)

On the one hand, he finds, “Twenty-six billion dollars of fraud: no charges”; on the other, the San Diego County District Attorney’s office conducts 26,000 warrantless, preemptive searches every year to make sure that welfare recipients really are exactly as poor as the poverty bureaucracy demands that they be.”
Kristian Williams, Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America

Angela Y. Davis
“Imprisonment is increasingly used as a strategy of deflection of the underlying social problems—racism, poverty, unemployment, lack of education, and so on.”
Angela Y. Davis, Freedom Is a Constant Struggle

Kristian Williams
“American capitalism needs a steady supply of immigrant labor, but it needs it cheap. By criminalizing the workers, the state helps to keep them uncertain, uneasy, disorganized, and docile. The attack on immigrants, therefore, is both “[p]olitically…an organic expression of nativist hostility and a very useful, rational system of elite-inspired class control”—“the primary product” of which “is… fear.”
Kristian Williams, Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America

Kristian Williams
“Where conflicts arise between workers and bosses, between the rights of one class and the interests of the other, the machinery of the law is typically used as a weapon against the workers. Even where the law is contrary to the demands of powerful corporations, the police often act not from principle or legal obligation, but according to the needs of the ruling class. This tendency shouldn’t surprise us, if we remember the lengths to which the cops have gone in the defense of White supremacy, even as laws and policies have changed. With class, as with race, it is the status quo that the police act to preserve and the interests of the powerful that they seek to defend, not the rule of law or public safety. The law, in fact, has been a rather weak guide for those who are meant to enforce it.”
Kristian Williams, Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America

“Look at outside. We don't have drug dealers on the corners anymore. I can't remember the last time someone was shot on this block. My church-goers can come and go in peace."

"When there isn't a curfew. Pastor, this isn't peace. This is order”
Tochi Onyebuchi, Riot Baby

Kristian Williams
“Police activism, especially in the guise of union activity, remains somewhat perplexing. The historical development is clear enough, but politically it is troublesome—especially for the left. The whole issue presents a nest of paradoxes: the police have unionized and gone on strike—but continue in their role as strikebreakers. They have pitted themselves against their bosses and the government, but represent a threat to democracy rather than an expression of it. They have resisted authority for the sake of authoritarian aims, have broken laws in the name of law and order, and have demanded rights that they consistently deny to others. (...)

Police associations thus developed in relative isolation from the rest of the labor movement, while building close ties with the command hierarchy within the departments. This fact points to two related reasons why police unions are not legitimate labor unions. First, as is discussed above, the police are clearly part of the managerial machinery of capitalism. Their status as “workers” is therefore problematic. Second, the agendas of police unions mostly reflect the interests of the institution (the police department) rather than those of the working class.”
Kristian Williams, Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America

Kristian Williams
“Curiously, the surveillance, harassment, infiltration, arrests, sabotage, slander, disruption, and petty bullshit endured by the left is only rarely matched by the level police action against the right. Even during World War II, when the U.S. was at war with Nazi Germany and allied with the Soviet Union, the NYPD still invested more resources in infiltrating the Communist Party than in monitoring fascists. Likewise, though the FBI eventually initiated COINTELPRO-WHITE HATE against the Klan—an effort that lasted seven years and included infiltration, sabotage, snitch-jacketing, electronic surveillance, black-bag jobs, and petty harassment — 98 percent of COINTELPRO files concerned leftist movements.”
Kristian Williams, Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America

Kristian Williams
“If we accept that police forces arose at a particular point in history, to address specific social conditions, then it follows that social change could also eliminate the institution. The first half of this syllogism is readily admitted, the second half is heresy.”
Kristian Williams, Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America

Kristian Williams
“It is a bad habit of mind, a form of power-worship, to assume that things must be as they are, that they will continue to be as they have been. It soothes the conscience of the privileged, dulls the will of the oppressed. The first step toward change is the understanding that things can be different. This is my principal recommendation, then: we must recognize the possibility of a world without police.”
Kristian Williams, Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America

Kristian Williams
“By “crime” I do not mean mere illegality, but instead a category of socially proscribed acts that: (1) threaten or harm other people and (2) violate norms related to justice, personal safety, or human rights, (3) in such a manner or to such a degree as to warrant community intervention (and sometimes coercive intervention). That category would surely include a large number of things that are presently illegal (rape, murder, dropping bricks off an overpass), would certainly not include other things that are presently illegal (smoking pot, sleeping in public parks, nude sunbathing), and would likely also include some things that are not presently illegal (mass evictions, the invasion of Iraq). The point here is that the standards I want to appeal to in invoking the idea of crime are not the state’s standards, but the community’s — and, specifically, the community’s standards as they relate to justice, rights, personal safety, and perhaps especially the question of violence. (...)

Because the state uses this protective function to justify its own violence, the replacement of the police institution is not only a goal of social change, but also a means of achieving it. The challenge is to create another system that can protect us from crime, and can do so better, more justly, with a respect for human rights, and with a minimum of bullying. What is needed, in short, is a shift in the responsibility for public safety—away from the state and toward the community.”
Kristian Williams, Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America

Richard Pipes
“The elaborate and rather flexible political police system established in Russia in the early 1880s was unique in at least two respects. Before the First World War no other country in the world had two kinds of police, one to protect the state and another to protect its citizens. Only a country with a deeply rooted patrimonial mentality could have devised such a dualism. Secondly, unlike other countries, where the police served as an arm of the law and was required to turn over all arrested persons to the judiciary, in imperial Russia and there alone police organs were exempt from this obligation.”
Richard Pipes, Russia Under the Old Regime

“If you can't save the life of innocent people at least don't kill their lives like a psychopath”
P.S. Jagadeesh Kumar

“[O]ffenses like disorderly conduct, obstruction, and resisting arrest are easily alleged, they effectively give police the power to arrest based on violations of their own sense of authority.”
Alexandra Natapoff, Punishment Without Crime: How Our Massive Misdemeanor System Traps the Innocent and Makes America More Unequal

Kristian Williams
“(1) the origin of a specialized police function depends upon the division of society into dominant and subordinate classes with antagonistic interests; (2) specialized police agencies are generally characteristic only of societies politically organized as states; (3) in a period of transition, the crucial factor in delineating the modern specialized police function is an ongoing attempt at conversion of the social control (policing) mechanism from an integral part of the community structure to an agent of an emerging dominant class; and (4) the police institution is created by the emerging dominant class as an instrument for the preservation of its control over restricted access to basic resources, over the political apparatus governing this access, and over the labor force necessary to provide the surplus upon which the dominant class lives.”
Kristian Williams, Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America

Kristian Williams
“It seems that, however much the cops may dislike gang violence, they like gang peace even less. “Banging” kept the gangs divided, thus weaker, and produced fear and hostility in the broader community (which could then be leveraged into a measure of support for the police). “Trucing” may not have united the rival sets, but it did mean they weren’t shooting at each other quite so much, and the effort brought them a level of community support. It’s not hard to see why the cops would prefer one over the other. Whatever their limitations and contradictions, in the period of rebellion, gangs represented an armed challenge to state control. As with so much of police activity, here, too, crime is less an issue than power.”
Kristian Williams, Our Enemies in Blue: Police and Power in America

Maggie McNeill
“Want to know what it’s like to live in a police state? Look around you. Like the legendary frog, Americans have remained content to sit in the pot while the temperature has gradually increased, and we’re all well and truly cooking now.”
Maggie McNeill, The Essential Maggie McNeill, Volume I: Collected Essays from "The Honest Courtesan"

“The sterlite firing and the covid19 custodial deaths clearly proves the Tamil Nadu Psycho Police are professional terrorists”
P.S. Jagadeesh Kumar

Milton Sanford Mayer
“In 1936 or 1937 each of the Kronenberg detectives was openly assigned to a local church as observer, to report on the "loyalty" of the sermons. In addition this the detectives were not supposed to know, but they did - there was a Gestapo agent assigned to report on the fidelity of the detective's report. One day, at the height of the Church-Party struggle, Hofmeister was ordered to inform Pastor Faber, whose sermons he reported, that he must not read the pastoral letter sent out by the Protestant bishops to be read from the pulpits on the following Sunday.

To Policeman Hofmeister's horror, Pastor Faber coldly told him that the Church, not the State, would decide what was to be read from the pulpit. Hofmeister tried to "reason" (he puts it this way, fifteen years later) with the clergyman and told him that there would be a Gestapo agent present and that they would both, Faber and Hofmeister, get into trouble if the pastoral letter were read. Faber said that Hofmeister would have to look out for himself, and rose, ending the interview.

To my amazement, Hofmeister, who had by no means been an ardent Nazi, still, fifteen years later, resented the pastor's defiance of the "law," that is, of the authorities. He no more admired Faber's heroism - the letter was read from the pulpit - now than then. He himself, Hofmeister, had violated the "law," that is, what his superiors told him to do, by revealing to the pastor that there would be a Gestapo man present, and the pastor was willing to jeopardize an innocent man along with himself. "It was like a slap in the face/' said Hofmeister, and I saw that even the policeman might have a hard time of it in the police state.”
Milton Sanford Mayer, They Thought They Were Free: The Germans 1933-45

Ioan Petru Culianu
“In any case, the magician State—unless it involved vulgar conjurers—is vastly preferable to the police State, to the State which, in order to defend its own out-of-date 'culture,' does not hesitate to repress all liberties and the illusion of liberties, changing itself into a prison where all hope is lost.”
Ioan Petru Culianu, Eros and Magic in the Renaissance

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
“In 1924–1929, sentences were determined by joint administrative and economic consideration. Beginning in 1924, because of national unemployment, the courts reduced the number of verdicts which sentenced prisoners to corrective labor while they continued to live at home and increased short-term prison sentences. These cases involved only nonpolitical offenders, of course. As a result, prisons were overcrowded with short-termers serving sentences of up to six months, and not enough use was being made of them in labor colonies. At the beginning of 1929, the People's Commissariat of justice of the U.S.S.R., in Circular No. 5, condemned short-term sentences and, on November 6, 1929, the eve of the twelfth anniversary of the October Revolution, when the country was supposedly entering on the construction of socialism, a decree of the Central Executive Committee and the Council of People's Commissars simply forbade all sentences of less than one year!”
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago, 1918 - 1956: An Experiment in Literary Investigation, Books I-II

George Lamming
“When the poor man loose control of the best in himself... it ain't his fault at all, it is the fault of people who go 'round making poppits of other poor people.”
George Lamming, In the Castle of My Skin

“The word could be translated in a number of ways. It could mean self-reliance, autonomy, independence, or responsibility—all the things we weren’t allowed to have. According to the Juche 'philosophy,' 'human beings are the masters of the world, so they get to decide everything.' It suggested we could reorganize the world, hew out a career for ourselves, and be the masters of our destiny. This was laughable, of course, but that’s always the way with totalitarian regimes. Language gets turned on its head. Serfdom is freedom. Repression is liberation. A police state is a democratic republic. And we were 'the masters of our destiny.' And if we begged to differ, we were dead.”
Masaji Ishikawa

Abhijit Naskar
“A police officer oblivious to their errors and shortcomings is no different from the Gestapo. Such police may be suitable in Nazi Germany, Imperialist Britain, Confederate America or the Amazon jungle, but they have no place in a society of civilized beings.”
Abhijit Naskar, Generation Corazon: No Compromise on Humanity

« previous 1 3 4