Todd Grotenhuis

Aug 2022

No, the GOP is not the party of law enforcement

…and neither is the Democratic party.

In the news this morning, there were reactions of surprise that there would be calls coming from rightwing reactionaries to “defund the FBI”.

Why surprise? Well, because the commentators see the GOP on the side of law enforcement generally, and more specifically due to their reaction to calls from activists to defund the police.

But most people, including people that make up the Republican and Democratic parties, are people of some law enforcement. Which laws we want to see created and enforced tend to vary by political leanings.

Between the FBI & the police, the FBI is more likely to restrain the powerful, and the police are more likely to restrain the less-powerful. This aligns with the trends of the right and left wings in USAmerican politics. We should not see “surprise” with this alignment.

Obviously there are many exceptions, and I am no proponent of either party (nor in favor of “punching” in general), but it is directionally true that he rightwing has been more likely to “punch down” towards those in weaker positions (e.g. immigration, poverty, sexuality, etc.) and the leftwing has been more likely to “punch up” towards those with power (e.g. monopoly, environment). (All this despite the fact that people in powerful positions often feel like they are the embattled ones.)

In summary: don’t be surprised that there are factions of the right wing calling to defund law enforcement that restrains the powerful. That is the MO of much of their recent work.

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