The Mississippi state legislature is working overtime to turn Jackson into a police-run capitol.
SB 2343 and HB 1020 will give Capitol Police jurisdiction over all of Jackson and the same privileges and authority as state law enforcement.
This is a direct attempt to over-police a vulnerable Black community in the interests of white politicians who don't live in or around Jackson.
Some of the greatest concerns for Jackson residents are the presence of Capitol Police, the aggression and excessive force they use against residents, and the lack of training they receive.
Capitol Police is not a responsible or ethical response to crime in Jackson, and no part of this push to expand their authority is about fixing the crime problem – this is about taking control of a community that doesn't have the resources to fight back.
More importantly, many of the Capitol police officers aren't from and don't live in the Jackson community, which furthers the tension between law enforcement and community members.
If our state representatives really wanted to help fight crime, they would be investing our tax dollars into mental health and anti-poverty programs to better support all of our communities, not finding new ways to oppress and overpower the Black residents of this state.
No one should have to live with the fear of being targeted, harassed, or killed by law enforcement, especially in their own neighborhoods.