Singers John Legend and Lizzo, and actresses Natalie Portman and Taraji P. Henson are among the Hollywood celebrities who've signed a letter pushing the defunding all police departments in the wake of the police involved death of Minneapolis man George Floyd.
The open letter claims that in 2017, $194 billion was spent on the police by America’s various governments even as police have “continued profiling, harassment, terror and killing of Black communities.”
Black communities are living in persistent fear of being killed by state authorities like police, immigration agents, or even white vigilantes who are emboldened by state actors. According to the Urban Institute, in 1977, state and local governments spent $60 billion on police and corrections. In 2017, they spent $194 billion. A 220 percent increase. Despite continued profiling, harassment, terror and killing of Black communities, local and federal decision-makers continue to invest in the police, which leaves Black people vulnerable and our communities no safer.
LATEST BLOG POST: DEFUND POLICE & PUT THE FUNDS INTO BLACK COMMUNITIES— Jane Seymour Fonda (@Janefonda) June 3, 2020
In its call for a Week of Actions, today, Movement for Black Lives @Mvmnt4BlkLives is demanding divesting from the police and investing in Black communities.
Continue reading here: https://t.co/EGEnjzTbYh
They can afford to hire private, armed security to protect them and theirs. So, naturally, this would defund poor neighborhoods who would be overrun by criminals.— Amy Curtis (@RantyAmyCurtis) June 3, 2020
I say we prohibit them from doing so, then defund the police in their neighborhoods for a trial period first. https://t.co/eJGpAnZV1j
Black Lives Matter. "We should defund the police?" That is your solution?— Chuck Woolery (@chuckwoolery) June 3, 2020
Nashville residents sent resounding message to city leaders during marathon meeting: Defund police and invest in community goods and services.https://t.co/UWynCqWY3m— Yihyun Jeong (@yihyun_jeong) June 3, 2020
We're not confused, while we don't want a militarized police, we also do not want chaos in the streets. #DefundPolice is a dangerous message and most Americans will reject this type of irresponsible messaging tactic. #ReplaceRashida pic.twitter.com/0FteSnsjoc— David Dudenhoefer (@Dude4Liberty) June 3, 2020
Announcement!— DÆ (@daeshikjr) June 3, 2020
We are demanding the defunding and demilitarization of Seattle’s Police Department.
June 3rd (tomorrow) at 1:30pm
Cal Anderson Park.
We are demanding the release of all protestors and drop all charges.
No more back door convos. #seattleprotest #defundpolice pic.twitter.com/ZVXszw5o8X
A Chicago police officer hugs an African-American woman during a peaceful protest in Uptown, Chicago. Photo by @Photomohammad #ChicagoProtest #GeorgeFloyd #protests2020 #Chicago #uptown pic.twitter.com/QG1lJxwgrt— Moe Zoyari (@Photomohammad) June 2, 2020