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Summer Jobs for Young Fascists

Blog posts reflect the views of their authors.

Summer in Montreal is a wonderful time; with regular sunshine the green parks are full of picnics and sunbathers, the many colorful festivals have the café terraces in full fervor, and the summer workforce is in full view as students from the many post secondary institutions in this city eke out a living.  Recently I have noticed a particular demographic of the summer job market walking the streets and metro system.  Very clearly of a certain age bracket and dressed with an impression of civil service, brandishing arm bands, whistles and walkie-talkies, the Montreal Cadet Police are making a presence in many neighborhoods. Being a new resident to the city I was surprised at the notion of city paid workers with seemingly little utility, promoting an idea more than a service.

“If you are a cégep or university student, you might be interested in working with the Service de police de la Ville de Montréal (SPVM) as a police cadet…”

So begins the career prospects section of the SPVM website; a clear indication that the Montreal police force is looking to recruit a more sophisticated troop, as well as maintain their heavy community policing strategy.  One can assume the targeted discriminatory preference for students is not coincidence.  While military forces attempt to recruit in and around high schools, (often in lower income areas), similarly yet conversely, intelligence and enforcement agencies are seeking well educated, perhaps privileged young minds in need of funding for their education.

…”Every year the SPVM hires and trains about 100 college and university students to work as police cadets.  The SPVM is one of the only police forces in Canada to offer this program.”

In fact it seems that many cities and jurisdictions across Canada utilize cadet programs, screening and hiring youth above 18.  The Royal Newfoundland Constabulary, Charlottetown, The OPP, York and Peel Regions of Ontario, London, Thunder Bay, Edmonton and an ever-growing list of police franchises look for young minds, typically in the summer season to patrol the streets and perform a variety of tasks.

The SPVM Cadets are intended to be a support force for police operations to “control peaceful crowds and provide SPVM presence by circulating, controlling access and giving information to citizens.”  It seems when the program was established in 1992, the cadets were to be deployed at sports and cultural events, where large crowds of people would assemble.  But now less than twenty years later it is common-place to see two young cadets walking down major streets and casually riding the metro un-supervised, contrary to the SPVM's recruiting website which states:

“Police cadets are always trained and accompanied by a police officer; they never work alone in their assignment perimeter.”

Thankfully these cadets don’t appear to be armed with anything more than their wit, an earpiece and a radio unlike the controversially proposed Winnipeg Police Cadets set to hit the streets this fall.  They will be geared with handcuffs, pepper spray and flashlights that could easily become weapons against the impoverished and marginalized communities of Winnipeg who are already suffering greatly at the hands of police misconduct.

 

"They look terrific. It's going to be very recognizable on the street and that is very important... Hopefully, twenty years from now you are going to see cadets everywhere." 

-Winnipeg Police Chief Keith McCaskill.ii

 

The manufactured concern for public safety has driven away the real need for efficacy and accountability.  If these cadets can’t and don’t do anything it is a complete abuse of public funds, yet when they do something where does the authority lay?  There is the Orwellian yet very real chance of implicating an individual in a crime with bad information just by being in the right place at the right time especially when the witness is just doing a summer job.  Does a 45-hour paid training week prepare these young adults to be seeing eyes for the policing apparatus, which routinely commits grave acts such as unlawful arrest and even murder?  While it is explicitly an exercise of visual police presence to maintain the illusion of order and control so too was the Hitler-Jugend (Hitler Youth).  This militarization of youth lead to many joining military ranks when of age and perpetrating one of the worst attacks on humanity in history.  While young Germans in the 1920s were indoctrinated to believe their stance was rightfully just so too are impressionable youth being lead to believe that Canada, and its many levels of government, has legitimacy and they can do their part in the town in which they reside.   And you get to wear a spiffy shirt.

 

 

NOTES and SOURCES:

http://www.spvm.qc.ca/en/carrieres/5_1_3_cadets.asp

http://www.notyoursoldier.org/section.php?id=3

Police Unveil Cadet UniformsCBC News March 22, 2010 ://www.cbc.ca/canada/manitoba/story/2010/03/22/mb-cadets-program-uniforms-winnipeg.html

http://www.spvm.qc.ca/en/carrieres/5_1_3_1_programme.asp

http://winnipegcopwatch.org/

Justice for Freddy Villanueva, the 43rd Montreal Police Killing in 22 Years   COBP, Jeudi, Août 14, 2008, http://www.cmaq.net/node/30712

http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Holocaust/hitleryouth.html

 

 


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Comments

Thankfully these cadets

Thankfully these cadets don’t appear to be armed with anything more than their wit, an earpiece and a radio...

They are also armed with ticket books, giving community members fines to enforce a respect of important public safety bylaws such as jay-walking.  

Fascists?

As annoying as the cadets may be, don't you think the comparison with Nazi Germany is a bit farfetched?
 

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