To Snitch or Not to Snitch

Dr. Marc Lamont Hill has a fascinating editorial at AllHipHop.com about the moral dilemmas created by the growing Stop Snitching movement.

The movement, which has been accompanied by a flurry of t- shirts, songs, websites, and DVDs, is ideologically grounded in the belief that people should not cooperate with law enforcement authorities under any circumstances.

As you might guess, the movement is not without its critics:

In response to the "Stop Snitching" campaign, community organizations, politicians, and law enforcement agencies have mounted a full-fledged counter-movement, informally titled "Start Snitching", designed to encourage the hip-hop generation to cooperate with authorities when criminal acts are committed.

Hill doesn’t elaborate on their tactics unfortunately, and I’m left wondering how police and politicians plan to popularize snitching among a demographic already ravaged by the criminal justice system.

Afterall, this us-against-them mentality is hardly limited to the African-American community:

Even the police, who are among the strongest opponents of the "Stop Snitching" movement, have a 'blue code' of silence that protects them from internal snitches.

It’s true. Police advocates are fond of claiming that “a few bad apples” are responsible for all police misconduct, but police are loathe to expose criminality within their ranks. It’s ironic that those who’ve maintained a long-standing and virtually impenetrable “don’t snitch” ethic are now begging the public to stop following suit.

Ultimately, the “Stop Snitching” movement is a form of protest literally woven into the fabric of popular culture. A counter movement of police and prosecutors begging young people of color to “Start Snitching” is comically hypocritical, serving only to further legitimize the anti-informant crusade by proving its effectiveness.

The hard truth is that the “Stop Snitching” movement will continue to grow. Those that have been born the brunt of our war on drugs and the crime it causes have discovered a form of silent resistance. Thanks to the drug war, our most dangerous criminals are capitalizing on a climate of distrust between the police and the public in minority communities.

And if the DAs are up in arms over this, just wait til 50 Cent writes a song about jury nullification.

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Looking for the easiest way to join the anti-drug war movement? You've found it!

make no mistake it is a war!

make no mistake it is a war!      here  is a TRUE short story

here is a TRUE short story on how i called into fact a little realized if ever used defense to drug and other charges leaving the courts unable to answer a yes or no question all because of a theory involving the "war on drugs" -wanna here it -here it goes ...

 one day i was getting a ride to the bus stop by a friend of mine and was pulled over. they asked her for her documents and me for mine to which i replied" whats your probable cause to see my identification?" the illprepaired rookie just went back to his car . now the woman i was with unbeknowst to me had a grip of dope on her but more to my concern was what was in my backpack. when they asked to search it i refused and having taken a class on how to sue the police under title 18 and 42 i held them at bay long after they had taken away the driver.

 i eventually was arrested after they said an approaching man wearing a mask said he was there to judge me and he judged me death. this after he bragged about shooting my friends new chow puppy. so i go to jail the charges: methamphetamine,syringes,pot,pills,double edged weapon fake i.d. (i also had f^%$ the new world order t shirts i was making,a rolex and some other personal items.) anyway my girlfriend at the time unbeknowst to be had bailed me out using a borrowed i.d. and credit card!

  so i rush home put on a suit and returned to court 3 hrs later to see the judge. when they called me and motioned me up to the front of the courtroom i held back and asked her if i could ask a question before approaching. she said sure -so i asked her "if i crossed that barrier (seperating the audience and the lawyers )could i be waving constitutional rights i might not be aware of?" suprised she said "who told you this?" to which i replied that i had been doing some studying and wanted to know if any of this was actually true.

  she said to let her finish up with the other litigants and when she was done with them to come back in and she "would answer any questions i might have"  when i returned she had time to regain her composure and said if i wanted to believe some "jailhouse lawyers" and i said " i'm not trying to be disrespectful but is there any validity to this that if i crossed that gate that i could be waiving constitutional rights  i might not be aware orf. ?" to which again she gave now answer .

  ...wanna know what i was getting at?  it was the fact that durring times of emergency mainly war the govt is allowed to suspend certain rights of certain individuals for the good of the whole(something i'm in agreement with by the way) similar to what the u.s. did to japaneese americans durring ww2. well like i said at the beginning of this story "we are definetly in a war" that war my friends is the war on drugs. they have said it my entire childhood "we declared a war " " a war"  a war  a war! so i have no reason to think other than we are in a war! and hence the same rules would apply ie: the suspension of certain rights like :innocent until proven guilty" the japaneese americans were already presumed guilty so much so as to have all their property confinscated and them relocated to camps!

  so anyway the end result was that the judge couldn't answer a simple yes or no question regarding the true state of things ( and we call them "honorable" ha!) and they deceided to " not prosecute me on any of these charges exonerating my bond and me to never hear of it again!

  so the next time you find yourself being called up to the front of court remember nobody can FORCE you to waive your rights it has to be done voluntairly. so do yourself a favor and do something to stop the war on drugs and dont comply dont wawalk into war time court . dont be a smartass just pretend your on jeopardy and ask" is it true..."

  any additional or specific help i can give i can be reached at the email provided. just remember there is always a risk when standing up for your rights. freedom ISN'T free 

                                                                                            Erik Thompson

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