America Is on Fire. Here are Solutions

Cornel West is among those proposing policy changes
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 3, 2020 3:35 PM CDT
We've Seen the Rage. Now What Do We Do?
A man takes part in a demonstration on Wednesday, June 3, 2020, in Hyde Park, London, over the death of George Floyd, a black man who died after being restrained by Minneapolis police officers on May 25.   (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

Protests have rocked the country and left a trail of smoldering ruin, but to what end? That end—in terms of specific policy demands—is finding a voice on media and activist websites. Writing at the Guardian, Cornel West decries "another black person killed by the US police" and a US power structure that resists change, but also touches on policy ideas: "Any society that refuses to eliminate or attenuate dilapidated housing, decrepit school systems, mass incarceration, massive unemployment and underemployment, inadequate healthcare and its violations of rights and liberties is undesirable and unsustainable," he writes. Among other policy ideas emerging online:

  • BLM: Over 60 groups associated with Black Lives Matter issued policy demands Monday, including reparations, free higher education, and the end of capital punishment. Popular Democracy lists many of them, including economic plans: "Instead of federal, state, and local monies being invested into prisons, police, surveillance, and exploitative corporations, BLM would rather see that invested into long-term safety strategies such as education, local restorative justice services, employment programs, and universal health care."
  • Marshall Plan: Writing at the Financial Post, Diane Francis calls for a new Marshall Plan "in the form of a massive redistribution of wealth through taxation." Under the headline This Is Why America Burns, she says it's about "leveling the playing field by improving schools, health care, housing and employment prospects, so that all Americans have a fair shake." She insists it's not about socialism vs. free enterprise, saying other countries have struck a balance between economic fairness and "prosperous capitalist economies."
  • Police policy: 8cantwait has a list of police-policy demands, including the banning of chokeholds, strangleholds, and shooting at moving vehicles. "Police departments that have adopted these use of force policies kill significantly fewer people," the site says. "But few departments have adopted them."
(More George Floyd stories.)

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