On Tuesday, the 7th of August, Night out for Safety and Liberation hosted the Night out for Safety and Liberation as an alternative to the cop-focussed “National Night Out.” The Night out for Safety and Liberation is all about solutions to problems on the street and elsewhere that avoid reliance on police and prisons.
One speaker pointed out that they were unable to rely on the police for any kind of assistance because they had been doing sex work, even after being both shot and robbed on the old K Street strip decades ago. The same speaker pointed out that little has changed in this regard, and other attendees at the event also agreed sex workers cannot trust the police. The “War on Drugs” initiated by Richard Nixon and brought back by Ronald Reagan as a racist strategy to rid cities of people of color was mentioned often in the same breath as police oppression of sex workers. Sex and drug issues are actually closely related, as both involve the sovereignty people have over their own bodies. This sovereigny is assaulted by the government whenever people are prosecuted for their sex lives or over anything they choose to put in their bodies.
There seemed to be a consensus that no matter what the problem, the police would not offer a solution unless you were white with plenty of money and a nice condo. For anyone else, turning to the police just piles new problems on top of old ones. Charlottesville offers an example here. One thing that is worse than being rammed with a car and put in the hospital is being rammed with a car and put in the hospital, then harassed by grand juries hoping to indict all your friends for J20-style felonies. The latter happens when police become involved.
In front of DC’s Night Out for Safety and Liberation