“Paying Out” for the Right to Carry Out Police Murder of Innocent People: Just the Cost of “Doing Business” in Capitalist America

Tamir Rice

Tamir Rice was a 12-year-old playing in a park who was gunned down by police in Cleveland, Ohio on November 22, 2014.

May 2, 2016 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us


Last week, the City of Cleveland, the same city that would not indict the police who took the life of 12-year-old Tamir Rice, paid out $6 million to Tamir’s family. Part of the settlement was that Cleveland does not admit to any wrongdoing.

When corporations want to do highly profitable projects that do real damage to the environment, they buy “polluting rights” in the form of carbon credits under the Clean Air Act. It’s considered the cost of doing business in Capitalist Imperialist America.

The Cleveland payout, the latest in a series of seven-figure payouts by major American cities facing national outrage, is the cynical and soulless “reasonable cost accounting” of running a capitalist dictatorship of the bourgeoisie—where cash settlements are considered the cost of protecting the police whose purpose is to serve, protect and enforce the capitalist system. It’s the price of ensuring that police are allowed to continue to kill with impunity, especially at those times when they are caught red-handed.

This is NOT justice. And it raises the question: Why do we tolerate a system where the “cost of doing business as usual” includes the murder of Black children? How long will this outrage, this horror, go on?


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