The Brazil's Lethal Police Establishment

News 27 de Jan de 2022 BR ES

With each passing moment, the limits and fractures that the legal apparatus possesses are becoming more and more evident. Individuals are constantly stripped of their rights and placed under a state of indeterminacy, where their lives lose their meaningful value and become "killable" (without committing a homicide). We observe more and more abandoned individuals, excluded by power (outlawed) and placed in a State of Exception (because excluded from the law, they are also under the power of the law).

According to Giorgio Agamben, this killable individual (who can be given so many names, such as Alberto, Vinicius, Diego Scott, and many others) is the one whose reduction in the value of his life makes him not belong to society; and is the one who relates to society by his banishment from it. It is an anomaly, which justifies "being abandoned". His rights are not suspended legally, but in the impossibility of being fulfilled by the state.

Can you think of the many cases and examples where you have seen such a deficiency in the applicability of the law? There is an essential fracture between the law and the effective application of it, so that a zone of suspension of rights is created, since the humanity of these individuals had also been suspended. This condition we call the State of Exception (an intervention that is outside the law, but that represses the individual into the law, pure and unregulated enforcement).

Below we will see some of these cases, where power (in the form of the legal and police force) is able to decide about the life and death of people, and where there is a fracturing of justice, so that it becomes incapable of applying the law, because there is a constant state of exception.

December - 2019: São Paulo military police, during an operation at a funk party in the Paraisópolis community, murdered nine people and injured twelve others. Nine of the thirty-one officers involved in the operation were removed and indicted for manslaughter, when there is no intent to kill, but months later the same officers were promoted and rose in rank.

January - 2021: Diego Scott was involved in a family argument in which the military police were called to break up the situation. The police said that when they arrived at the scene, Diego was not found, but security camera footage shows the officers putting Diego into the vehicle. After this moment Diego Scott was never seen again.

November - 2021: Alberto Meyrelles is unjustly arrested for a robbery that occurred in 2019 after being recognized by the photo of his driver's license that was found in the vehicle involved in the crime, on the same day that the robbery occurred Alberto had filed a police report reporting a robbery in which his driver's license was taken.

These are just some of the cases of failures and police violence in Brazil.

We don't agree that a person should be treated as a killable individual, and we can't allow people to be seen in this way, these individuals are just victims of government prejudice in which all those who don't fit the label of a "good" person are disposable, as a society we can't allow ourselves to be judged as disposable or not for futile characteristics, we are human beings, we are much more than what can be seen with the naked eye.

Unfortunately cases like these happen daily and few are reported. The Brazilian police is the one that kills the most in the world. In 2020 there were 6,416 people killed by state agents, more than 17 victims per day, 80% of these victims were black. These numbers grow every year and ironically these deaths are justified by the lack of policing, since the only side that is really listened to is the police side, which always puts the same situation: the victim was accidentally killed in a confrontation between police and bandits, thus passing on to society, with the support of several media channels, the idea that society needs more police force, especially in community areas, always treating police presence as a form of protection and security, and not as oppression, which is the real feeling of the people who live in these areas.

The Brazilian police system carries a military heritage that makes it increasingly violent, less humane and less effective. The agency that should bring security and peace to the citizens has become one of the main cogs in the government's machine of violence and fear, in which the main goal is to silence the citizens and make them afraid to take a stand on the attitudes taken by the government.


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