Mercury Rising 鳯女

Politics, life, and other things that matter

Pinch the boob or, why police officers who engage in sexual assault during arrests should themselves be jailed

Posted by Charles II on May 4, 2012

(an updated version of an old favorite; lyrics)

David Graeber, Truthout:

A few weeks ago I was with a few companions from Occupy Wall Street in Union Square when an old friend — I’ll call her Eileen — passed through, her hand in a cast.

“What happened to you?” I asked.

“Oh, this?” she held it up. “I was in Liberty Park on the 17th [the Six Month Anniversary of the Occupation]. When the cops were pushing us out the park, one of them yanked at my breast.”

“Again?” someone said.

We had all been hearing stories like this. In fact, there had been continual reports of police officers groping women during the nightly evictions from Union Square itself over the previous two weeks.

“Yeah so I screamed at the guy, I said, ‘you grabbed my boob! what are you, some kind of fucking pervert?’ So they took me behind the lines and broke [one of] my wrists [and injured a second when I reached to pick up my glasses].

The apparently systematic use of sexual assault against women protestors is new. I’m not aware of any reports of police intentionally grabbing women’s breasts before March 17, but on March 17 there were numerous reported cases, and in later nightly evictions from Union Square, the practice became so systematic that at least one woman told me her breasts were grabbed by five different police officers on a single night …it is hard to imagine it is anything but an intentional policy.

…we know that in other countries, such things definitely happen. In Egypt, for example, there was a sudden spate of sexual assaults by security forces against protestors in November and December 2011, and followed a very similar pattern….”

One Response to “Pinch the boob or, why police officers who engage in sexual assault during arrests should themselves be jailed”

  1. This is what happens when the cops don’t come from the areas they police. (Per a friend of mine who used to work in a cop shop, a key reason cops don’t like policing their own neighborhoods is because a lot of them have ‘office wives’ in addition to their wives of record, and they don’t want them finding out about each other.)

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