4/13 The Big Data Policing Takeover; Inside The Historic Rutgers Strike w/ Sarah Brayne & Donna Murch

April 13, 2023

It’s an EmMajority Report Thursday! Emma hosts Sarah Brayne, professor of sociology at the University of Texas at Austin, to discuss her recent book Predict and Surveil: Data, Discretion, and the Future of Policing. Then, Emma is joined by Donna Murch, associate professor of History at Rutgers University and President of the New Brunswick Chapter of Rutgers AAUP-AFT, to give an update on the teachers strike going on at the university right now. First, Emma runs through updates on the Fifth Circuit’s response to the Texas Court ban on the abortion pill, Dianne Feinstein’s response to calls for her retirement, the reinstatement of Tennessee’s outspoken state house members, Arizona’s GOP-led expulsion of an election denier, Biden’s labor secretary nomination, ACA and Medicaid expansion for DREAMers, and Biden’s border policy, also touching on DeSantis begging his Floridian colleagues not to endorse Trump, Trump’s multiple fraud cases, and far-right legislation in Oklahoma and North Dakota, before watching Tom Scott dance around his intense anti-abortion stance. Sarah Brayne then dives right into her fieldwork over the past five years tailing and interviewing myriad members throughout the LAPD, including civilian employees and officers, exploring why the LAPD was the perfect location as one of the most technologically-advanced and well-funded police department, and as a department that has been forced into a more transparent relationship to the public after a few decades of incredible abuse and corruption to end the 20th Century. After briefly walking through her interviews with the LAPD, Brayne dives into the birth of LAPD’s dragnet and directed surveillance, with their systems of surveillance stemming from their role in collecting data for the federal government in the wake of 9/11, and the realization that this data can be applied locally in myriad departments, before stepping back to look at military intervention in the Middle East as a further example of US imperialism coming home to roost. Next, Emma and Sarah expand on the relationship between police departments and the corporations involved in surveillance tech and data integration, before they wrap up by tackling tackle the Police’s “nothing to hide, nothing to fear” ideology when it comes to surveilling other communities in contrast to their complete rejection of any internal surveillance, and why data collection, much like algorithms and AI, can simply never be objective. Donna Murch then walks through the creation of Rutgers’ multi-Union coalition in the wake of pandemic cutbacks, their bargaining process, and why NJ labor law is bolstering their fight, before concluding the conversation by walking through union demands, and how best to support them in this endeavor.

And in the Fun Half: Emma is joined by Matt Binder and Brandon Sutton as they tackle why you can’t spell Bud LiGhT without LGBT, James from Chicago land reveals Sam’s mystery role on The Magic School Bus, and the MR Crew dives into the absurd coverage of SF’s Tech Bro Stabbing. Bee from Queens dives into the ridiculous trans panic around sports, a GOP State Senator from Missouri votes against banning child brides, and LEGO goes WOKE! Sam from Toronto brings up the antithetical nature of popularism and majoritarian rule to leftist and progressive values, plus, your calls and IMs!

Check out Sarah’s book here: https://global.oup.com/academic/product/predict-and-surveil-9780190684099?cc=us&lang=en&

Get more info on the Rutgers AAUP-AFT here: https://rutgersaaup.org/

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