This zine consists of an essay by Stuart Schrader that critiques the concept of community policing. The essay argues that “community” and “policing” are both negative forces and that they rely on each other. There can be no “community” control of the police, as the police need “community” to delineate “trustworthy” groups of people. The text presents a strong criticism of community and argues that the process of dividing people into different groups – or communities – is a process of counter-insurgency. This is a rather dense piece, but a patient reader will be rewarded with many valuable insights.
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Excerpt from Against the Romance of Community Policing
Community is the terrain of intervention for police, shaped by police. It does not preexist police and it does not provide a bulwark against police power. It cannot achieve its apparent cohesiveness without the police power. It cannot be joined to police to moderate the negative effects of policing.