So sitting there on my ankle is a tattoo cementing my hatred for the prison industrial system and the justice system all in four little letters: ACAB. All cops are bad. Other people say other words. This is not saying that there are no good cops, even though there are not, this is saying there cannot be any good cops. ACAB, in my eyes, is not about just one profession, but about the entire bail bonds, prison industrial, 13th amendment loophole system. ACAB is saying that no matter how many cops try to be good, the few bad cops perpetuate everything wrong with the system. A few good cops will not reverse the countless murders and wrongful arrests of BIPOC. ACAB is calling out the institutionalized racism and racial profiling that is engrained into police training. Many cops do not police their own because the system is set up for honesty and righteousness to be punished. This does not fare well for citizens when the good cops are forced to turn a blind eye to misdoings.
With all of the police we’re seeing abusing their power and attacking protestors clearly there needs to be change in legislation or police training. Police officers should be held accountable for the lives they take whether it is an accident or not, because lives are not something that can be destroyed and created so frivolously. ACAB is also calling for the abolition or defunding of the police. These are not new requests. The black panthers policed their own neighborhoods and policed the police, but they were targeted and their reputation was tarnished by the United States government, despite being the organization responsible for creating WIC. This organization saw the injustice being exercised by law enforcement and decided someone needed to police the police. Calling the police on a black person can likely be a death sentence and because of this many people have grown weary and have a general disdain for the police. The ACAB movement is an amalgamation of all these issues and a demand for change.
Another reason people stick by ACAB is because of the insane amount of funding that police departments get compared to other social services, and how little they do for the communities their policing with these funds. The funds are being used to brutalize and attack US citizens instead of protect them because of preconceived notions based in hundreds of years of unfounded racism. There are much better things the police could be doing with their funds, and that’s why people say ACAB.
"Anyone can fly. All you need is somewhere to go that you can't get to any other way. The next thing you know, you're flying among the stars."
~ Faith Ringgold