Culture Wars/Current Controversies

Blame the system itself

Self-defence is no offence, insists Daniel Lazare. The death of Jordan Neely was an avoidable tragedy

Weekly Worker

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez calls herself a socialist, but her reaction to the death of a violent, homeless man, after an ex-marine placed him in a chokehold on a crowded subway last week, was the opposite of everything socialism stands for.

Two days after the May 1 death, the Democratic congresswoman from the Bronx tweeted that “Jordan Neely was murdered.” A few minutes after that, she upped the ante by calling his death “a public murder … that reinforces existing power structures”. On May 4, she tweeted again: “Killing is wrong. Killing the poor is wrong. Killing the mentally ill is wrong. Why is that so hard to say?”

As protestors blocked subway lines, baited the police and fought with bystanders, AOC added on May 6:

Despite what Fox News wants you to believe, being afraid of an unarmed person is not a reason to kill them. We should never accept a society where such rationale becomes normal. Especially when powerful incentives exist in politics and media to keep people afraid of each other.1

Considering that a poor black man had just been killed, why were such statements anti-socialist? Let us count the ways.


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