Should We Have Police,Bojidar Marinov
Axe to the Root Podcast Episode #14
Should We Have Police?
Welcome to Episode 14 of Axe to the Root Podcast, part of the War Room Productions, I am Bo Marinov, and for the next 30 minutes we will be talking about police, standing armies, pagan law enforcement, Biblical law enforcement, and how Christians of our day have been duped into supporting wholeheartedly a social order and its institutions which are blatantly opposed to the Biblical social order and to the Biblical concept of social order. As a result, we as Christians have allowed not only the perversion of justice but also open institutional idolatry in the land; and in many cases, we have willingly joined that idolatry in sincere adoration of its gods.
I have to start here with pointing to a historical blind spot of many American Christians in the last couple of decades, a blind spot that has been carefully nurtured and developed by the enemies of God through propaganda and political action: The belief that modern liberalism in America and the destruction of the old Christian social order started in the 1960s. America, the majority of Christians believe, started on a downward spiral with the sexual revolution and the hippie movement and the post-modernism of the flower generation. Before that, the nation was supposedly decent and Christian nation, and everything was nice and good. Many Christians, therefore, instinctively side with the conservative side of the political spectrum, because they see that our society has been changed radically; they want a return to an earlier society, earlier times that were less radical and more “traditional,” which would mean “Christian.” And the conservative side of the spectrum points to that time before the 1960s – preferably the 1950s, when men were men, women were women, crime and debauchery were kept off the streets, public schools allowed prayers, judges and politicians paid lip service to Christian values, everyone respected authority, and the economy was prosperous beyond anything the world had seen up to that time. This is the real motive behind modern conservatism, and many Christians imagine that it is a Christian motive – after all, it was the world before the hippies and the sodomites appeared, right?
There is only one problem in this motive: It is based on a fallacious view of history. America of the 1950s was not a Christian society, nor a Christian social order; and it had nothing to do with the original America of the Founders – nor even with the Constitutional order established in 1789. America of the 1950s was just as radically leftist as America of the 1960s, and, as a matter of fact, as America of today. It was not a conservative nor a Constitutional nor a Christian social order in any meaning of these words. If anything, there was even less Christianity around than there is today; the only traces of Christianity could be found in the personal work ethic and beliefs of many individuals and perhaps in some pulpits. But as social order, civil government, legal structure, principles of government and economics, taxation, justice, liberty, America of the 1950s was very deliberately anti-Christian and anti-Biblical.
The real Marxist, anti-Christian revolution in America happened not in the 1960s, it happened much earlier, in the first half of the 20th century, under Presidents that are today hailed as some sort of heroes, like Teddy Roosevelt, FDR, Woodrow Wilson, and yes, even Calvin Coolidge, for all the right and good ideological views he had. The radical Left took over America much earlier than the 1960s; and when it took it, the churches remained silent. The revolution of the 1960s was not a leftist revolution against a Christian social order; it was, as Robert Nisbet points out in an article for the Encounter Magazine in 1972, titled “Radicalism as Therapy,” an in-house struggle between the Old Radical Left of the rationalists vs. the New Radical Left of the mysticists. Both sides were – and still are – anti-Christian to the core. Both sides worked hard – and continue to do so – to co-opt gullible Christians to their respective sides, using rhetoric that would attract specific layers within the churchian circles. In the final account, today, the Old Radical Left calls itself “conservative,” has the Republican Party as its political arm, and has managed to put in its hip-pocket the “conservative” share of the church-goers in America; on the other side, the New Radical Left calls itself “liberal,” has the Democrat Party as its political arm, and has managed to put in its hip pocket the “liberal” share of the church-goers in America. In the final account, the church in America has become a tool in the hands of the Left – in both of its varieties – and celebrity preachers on both sides of the fence build their careers on either dulling the resistance against the Left in general (by calling for cultural non-involvement and retreat), or actively recruiting useful idiots by endorsing radical leftist candidates, Old and New Left, Republican and Democrat, and calling their followers to vote for them.
Knowing this historical and ideological context is important to our understanding of how far American Christians have gone in their idolatry on many issues – including police. Most of the modern political and social and economic practices considered “conservative” and eagerly defended and supported by modern Christians were in fact introduced by this Old Radical Left. Some of these practices are more obviously leftist: Social Security, the IRS and Federal taxes, government regulatory agencies, government schools and the National Education Agency, the ban on prayer in schools and the separation of civil government from morality, etc., etc. Others, though, are not so obviously leftist and radical and seem quite “conservative” and even “Christian” to many Christians, to the point that Christian celebrities concoct systems of interpretation to try to fit these practices into the Bible. I have mentioned before that such are the laws restricting and controlling immigration (listen to my three lectures on immigration to see why such government control is pagan and anti-Christian), but there are many more: foreign wars and empire and standing armies, the prison system, the War on Drugs and regulation and control of substances and non-criminal behavior, the propaganda concept of “respect to authority” (which was rejected and fought against by earlier generations of Americans), the Pledge of Allegiance, the political centralism of Washington DC, and many others that today pass for “conservative” policies and practices but were in fact introduced by radical leftists.
And among these radical leftist practices is the introduction of a standing army with executive privilege with the purpose of controlling the population – allegedly to prevent crime – enforcing government policies, collecting revenue in taxation and fines, and bossing around innocent people. That is, police. That’s right, folks, the creation of police in the US and the West was an initiative of radical leftist politicians; and therefore those Christians who support the police are only supporting the destruction of the Christian social order of our ancestors. But let’s start from the beginning: from the Word of God and what it presents as a Biblical social order.
I will here quote directly from an article I wrote about a year and a half ago, on the murders of Michael Brown and Eric Garner; the title of the article is “Brown, Garner, and the Application of Biblical Law to Homicide and Murder.” In it, I started with the Biblical view of what a law-enforcement a righteous society should have. Quote:
The Bible doesn’t allow for the creation of a government’s specialized standing army for any purposes, whether for permanent warfare against foreign nations or for “maintaining order” at home. Aggressive wars were forbidden as a government policy, and kings were forbidden from maintaining specialized offensive forces (Deut. 17:16; see also 1 Sam. 8:11-12). Also, there was no provision for a centralized executive power in the land which would determine what “order” was and enforce it. The executive function of government was left to the families and local communities to maintain and enforce, and therefore any “order” in the society was to be voluntary and based on private action and transactions. The function of the civil government was limited to the judiciary, local courts with appellate courts above them, with either the King or the High Priest acting as Supreme Court at the top of the judiciary pyramid. Prevention of crime was not delegated to the government; the Bible recognizes that crime is a moral issue first and foremost, and therefore there would be no institutional solution to its prevention. Prevention therefore was left to moral instruction in the family and in the church, and ultimately, since only God could read the heart of a person, to God Himself. Human courts were only allowed to act when crime was committed and the guilt of the perpetrator could be reliably establish by the word of witnesses (Deut. 19:15).
In such a system, a law-enforcing agency is not executive (enforcing rules and regulations) but judicial (carrying out orders of the courts), similar to the US Marshals Service. It doesn’t “maintain order,” arbitrarily deciding on the spot what “order” is; it only executes court orders following court verdicts or decisions. Thus, the concept of “power of arrest” doesn’t exist as an executive privilege; and neither does the multitude of artificial and arbitrarily made up “crimes” related to the “power of arrest,” like “resisting arrest,” “obstructing government administration,” etc. (Ever thought about the idiocy of a crime like “resisting arrest,” when the “criminal” is not guilty of anything else but resisting unlawful arrest?) Thus, the category of “suspect” doesn’t exist in the legal language, and therefore all the rights related to it that the cops have don’t exist. How does a police officer know who is a suspect and who isn’t? The Bible doesn’t allow for such arbitrary legal power given to a special class of people. Without such arbitrary power of arrest and designating “suspects,” thousands of innocent lives would have been spared in the US, who were murdered in cold blood by police officers.
The only time when a person can be legally apprehended and detained is when caught in the very act of the crime, to prevent him from committing a crime, and to make sure he is taken to court. Outside direct prevention of crime on the spot, the only action should be through the courts. Christian Europe after 12th century, until the rise of the modern socialist state in the 20th century, specifically forbade actions against criminals that were not in direct self-defense or following a court decision. The legal category of “suspect,” used today to justify police action, did not exist: a person was either caught in the act, or sentenced on the basis of testimonies, or considered innocent. [end of quote]
This distinction between an executive government and a judiciary government is very important for our understanding of the Biblical view of government. To understand how important it is, I need to return you back to my podcast on the war against self-government. The Biblical social order is based on self-government. Thus, a self-governing man, a man who is obedient to the Law of God, has no other head above himself but Christ (“The head of every man is Christ,” 1 Cor. 11:3). No government should be given the legal power to control non-criminal individuals: Romans 13, the passage so widely misused and abused by modern statists in the pulpits, specifically says that rulers should have authority – or being “terror” – only over evil, not over good. And the difference between a judiciary government and an executive government is exactly that: a judiciary is passive, and it is only activated when there is a crime committed. It only has power over those who have committed crimes. On the other hand, an executive government by definition is a government with its own life, goals, purposes, and its own ideas of order. And since non-criminal individuals also have their own lives, goals, purposes, and order, an executive government by definition must end up controlling non-criminal individuals.
And more than that. Since in the Bible God leaves the executive decisions in the society to individuals and families, any government that appropriates executive functions for itself must by definition wage a war against individuals and families, and appropriate for itself the authority to be a surrogate family to the society. We have to understand: The war against the family today is a war by the executive government against its rival, the family. This war – a Satanic attempt to substitute the state for the family – is at the very foundation of the concept of executive government. When the French Enlightenment thinker Montesquieu laid out his views for division of powers within the government – legislative, executive, judiciary – his purpose was not to limit government, it was to expand government so that it takes over the executive decisions from the family. (I have explained it in a lecture I delivered many years ago to a Worldview Superconference organized by American Vision: “Europe as a Mirror to America.”) A judiciary government is passive, and only has control over criminals. An executive government competes against the family for control over the executive decisions in the society – and therefore, an executive government will always consider the family – and especially the Christian family – its arch-enemy.
The difference in clear in the Bible, in 1 Samuel chapter 8. The people already had a government – a vertical system of judiciaries, of appellate courts designed by God to maintain justice. When they wanted a king, they wanted an executive government, as in the pagan nations around them. But in the pagan nations around them, there were no laws; everything happened by permission of the king. In my article, “Torah vs. Anomia: Rule of Law vs. Rule by Permit,” I have shown the difference in respect to immigration. In order to immigrate to Egypt or to pass through Edom, one had to have a permission by the King. There were no laws, just personal whims of an executive authority. In Israel, there was no government institution to give permits for immigration and passage, and thus anyone was free to pass or settle, as long as they didn’t commit a crime. Immigration is only one example of many. In everything, Israel was a free land, and there was no king to ask for permission, and no government to issue permits, licenses, visas, and other executive orders.
Why is this important to know in our talk about police? Because police, by its very ideology, design, and nature, is an executive institution. Many Christians today think of modern police as the Sheriffs of old. It isn’t; it is radically different. The Sheriffs of 100 years ago were only an arm of the judiciary: they were only serving warrants, and they had no executive authority. When one looks at the photos of Texas sheriffs of 100 years ago, not a single one of them is in uniform, and they were all armed as much as the average guy on the street. Modern police is not an institution of justice on criminals, it is an institution for control over non-criminals, to make sure that the executive government doesn’t meet any competition from individuals and their families. It is a pagan, Satanic institution by its very inception, and therefore any pastor who tries to justify it by using Romans 13 is only preaching idolatry similar to that of the people of Israel in 1 Samuel 8: He has rejected God from being King.
Thus, when Christianity became dominant in Europe, one of the most important legal and political consequences were that it destroyed the concept of an executive government. And with it, it destroyed the legal authority of the military castes.
You see, every pagan society by necessity eventually ends up being run by a caste of men in uniforms, by a professional standing army which has in its hands both the executive power to force the population to do its bidding, and the legislative power to define the laws of the land and thus legitimize its own use of that power. It is inevitable for a pagan society; there is no escape from a military dictatorship when God is not King of a culture. That military caste may be a specific ethnicity within the Empire – as it was with the empires of the Aztecs, the Incas, the Mongols, or the Ottoman Empire. It may be a special class of citizens, as in the Greek city-states, and especially in Sparta. It may be the Roman legions and specifically their elite troops, the Praetorian Guard, which killed and made emperors throughout the whole history of the Empire and later of Byzantium. It may be an official caste based on genetic origin, like the Kshatriyas in India. It may be a nobility of the sword as in China or in Japan. In all these cases, when God is rejected from being a King, the empires of man try to establish an executive government where they control the destiny and the decisions of millions of individuals for the purposes of the rulers. And this requires a standing army; not a standing army for defense of the borders, but a standing army for oppression and control of their own people.
Christian Europe, of course, was not perfectly Biblical, so it inherited the concept of professional soldiers and a standing army from the pagan Roman past. What it changed, though, was the legal status of that class. In Rome – as in all pagan societies – the power of the sword coincided with the power of the law. In Europe, the church changed this. The men in power were gradually stripped of their authority to make laws. The legislative process was decentralized and taken away from them. It was given to the church and to the local non-military elders. The nobility of the sword made laws for themselves. The law of the land was left in the hands of non-military, non-aristocratic bodies – like the church, the local village councils, or the provincial parliaments. The rule of the rulers was limited to their judicial functions as courts of justice; and where they tried to act as legislative or executive power, local Parliaments kept to themselves the right to annul the king’s decrees. (I talk about the function of the Parlement of Paris to annul the decrees of the King of France in my lecture, “Europe as a Mirror of America.”) A great part of that transformation was accomplished by a grass roots movement in the church which is virtually unknown today, but historically, it was the longest lasting and the most powerful grass-roots movement Christendom has ever seen: The Peace and Truce of God Movement. It started in the 10th century and it continued for 400 years, influencing the legal and the governmental practices of all of Europe, and creating a completely new and unique concept of relationship between rulers and ruled. You all are familiar with the Lesser Magistrate Doctrine that Pastor Matt Trewhella has been preaching to churches and local magistrates. The Peace and Truce of God Movement was the ideological and historical prerequisite to that doctrine. The Magdeburg Declaration couldn’t have happened if it wasn’t for the transformation of the European society by the Peace and Truce of God. And an important part of that transformation was that making laws was taken away from the men with weapons and the power to employ violence.
More than that, the legal authority for the use of violence was now separated from the official status of a person. Might didn’t make right anymore. Just being a ruler or being a knight or a member of the aristocracy didn’t create executive privilege; the common folk were not only allowed to have weapons (unlike in the Roman Empire and other pagan cultures), they were encouraged to train and to use them against rulers who used their power illegally. The story of Robin Hood is such a story but there are many more of that period. Christendom created the code of chivalry, and we can’t grasp the covenantal meaning of chivalry unless we understand this separation between might and right. At the very bottom of chivalry was the moral dilemma of the noble knight who is powerful physically and militarily but is restrained morally in his legitimate use of his power. So the chivalric literature almost always revolved around the quest for moral causes that would make the use of that power morally legitimate. Pagan heroes had no such qualms: if they had power, they used it any time they wanted, for their own purposes. Christian knights couldn’t. The new civilization that was emerging based on the Word of God couldn’t allow for powerful men having control over the lives and destinies of non-criminal people. Even if for a while some old pagan traits remained, the Reformation destroyed them in the 16th and the 17th centuries. By the end of the 18th century, Europe was a continent of decentralized powers, and executive power in the hands of the local communities, not in the hands of kings.
Naturally, the concept of modern police was born in the revived paganism of the Enlightenment. For the Enlightenment thinkers, it was clear that in order to push God out of the universe, a bare-bones atheism wouldn’t be enough. The all-powerful, all-knowing, and omnipresent God would have to be matched by the all-powerful, all-knowing, and omnipresent man. And even that won’t be enough – for the real power of God in history is not visible in His being – which is invisible – but in His works. Thus, for the new pagans to be able to establish their order, the redeeming God had to be matched by the redeeming man. God’s redemption of His universe was the real offense, and man could only better God by offering a better redemption to the universe in general and to man’s society in particular. This is a topic for another podcast, but we need to understand here: the real strategy of the Enlightenment was not to simply separate man from God; that wouldn’t work after centuries of Christendom. The real strategy and the real appeal of the Enlightenment was: We can create a better world without God. We have a better redemption.
All the humanist institutions created by the Enlightenment had exactly this ideology in their foundation: Man’s redemption of himself without God. And since the individual man is powerless to redeem himself, it is, in the final account, the state’s redemption of man without God. Just keeping the state limited to judging crimes under the Law of God won’t suffice. The state had to create its own ethics, its own legislation. But more than that; it had to create its own transcendent purpose for man and his society – and thus become an executive state, a heavenly father of a sort. And since there is still the problem of crime, the state had to mimic God in preventing crime. Not just judging crime, but preventing it, reading the hearts of men, conditioning the hearts of men, and redeeming the hearts of men to make them into good men. Like God does. The government schools, the prisons, the regulatory agencies, the different administrations, the government’s economic planning boards, the central banks – they were all meant to be hands of the redemption of the humanist state.
And the police, too. The thinkers of the Enlightenment believed that there was nothing spiritual about the society and the hearts of men – they were all subject to similar mechanistic laws as those that Isaac Newton discovered about the physical universe. A ruling elite, therefore, which wants to rival God in terms of redemption must discover these social laws and then use them just as an engineer uses the laws of nature. Crime, then, is not a moral failure, it is bad social engineering. If we have a trained class of social engineers who can discover the social laws that govern crime, and work to change the conditions so that crime is prevented.
And this class of elite social engineers who can discover the social laws of crime and prevent crime – thus creating humanistic redemption without God – is the police. This was the ideological beginning and foundation of modern police. Police couldn’t exist nor appear in a society where the government is obedient to God and stays within its prescribed limits of a judiciary. Modern police can only appear in the context of a messianic government – a government that tries to supplant God by playing god and redeemer on earth.
The first professional police in Europe was created in Revolutionary France under the Jacobin dictatorship. During the Revolutionary terror in France, English observers severely criticized this aspect of the French Revolution. After the defeat of Napoleon, however, most European nations – including England – adopted the concept. By 1830, they all had their own professional police forces, and started using them to suppress dissent and discontent. Police became a regular sight in the European empires which were growing more and more humanistic and anti-Christian. The old pagan concept of executive government was restored, and with it, the old pagan concept of a military caste with special executive privileges was restored.
The United States, where the old Christian culture and worldview survived the longest, remained an exception. The Founding Fathers not only didn’t envision professional police forces, they made it clear they detested any concept of a standing army, let alone a standing army on US soil. America didn’t have police in its founding, and for another 100 years, most of America didn’t have professional police. Alexis de Tocqueville, coming from humanist Europe which in his time was already a police state, mentions his surprise that America had no professional police. Contrary to the pagan claims that without police, crime will be rampant, de Tocqueville also points out that “hardly a crime remains unsolved and unpunished.” America without professional police was a country of less crime and more justice – because the solution to crime and justice was the Biblical solution, not the humanist solution.
And naturally, the first professional police in America appeared exactly where the government was the farthest away from Christianity and the closest possible to the newly restored European paganism: In NYC, under the rule of the corrupt Democrat administration of Tammany Hall, in the 1840s. Up to that time, big cities had their own voluntary citizens’ patrols, but no city government had its own standing army. The Tammany Hall bosses started it first, and then, other corrupt city governments followed suit. For the first 60 years of the existence of professional police in NYC, it did next to nothing in fighting crime – in fact, if anything, crime skyrocketed while the city was expanding its standing army. For over 60 years, the NYPD was busy almost entirely with collecting revenue for the city government – mainly from illegal brothels and game houses. In the South, professional police was created for the purpose of hunting runaway slaves; other than that, the South had no police forces. In rural areas and on the frontier, the Sheriffs, as I said before, were only agents of the courts, serving warrants and authorizing executors of court verdicts. They only assumed executive functions in cases of emergency – as in Texas during the Mexican Socialist revolution, when Texas towns had to be defended against gangs.
The real expansion of police and the creation of the modern standing army came in the first half of the 20th century, with the Prohibition. Both the Federal government and the states started hiring more police, creating more and more departments and sub-departments. Since the government was now in the business of morally redeeming people, it needed that elite class of warriors to keep the population in subjection. The end of the Prohibition didn’t roll back the swollen ranks of police, though. Very soon, new prohibitions were made by both the Federal government and the states, and police kept growing. And of course, the ultimate excuse for the complete destruction of the Constitutional liberties of Americans came with the War on Drugs. The War on Drugs was from its conception a radical leftist experiment in humanistic redemption of society – an attempt of Washington DC to replace God as the ruling religious principle in America. And this replacing God needed replacing His power with the power of the state. Thus the concept of modern police was finally embodied in our laws and social practices.
Contrary to the self-delusions of the majority of Christians, there was nothing Christian, nothing conservative, and nothing constitutional about the emergence of police in the US and in the West in general. Police was from the very beginning conceived as a counterfeit government, designed to destroy the social order inherited from Christendom; its purpose was the subjection of the non-criminal population to the state, so that the humanist state can emerge as an executive ruler, as a god and redeemer walking on earth. And for the last 100+ years, this nature and purpose of police have become more and more obvious in the fact that there has been no righteous cause that American police has ever joined. Despite the delusions of many conservatives and Christians, police in America is heavily controlled by the Democrat Party and serves its agenda. Police unions, from the lowest levels to the National Fraternity Order of Police, contribute 100% to Democrat PACs. Even David Clarke, so adored by FOX News, is a 100% Democrat with deep ties in the Democrat Party. Local PDs and Sheriffs have increasingly joined the Federal government’s war on the Second Amendment; those who claim they are pro-2nd Amendment and anti-Washington DC, still line up for Federal handouts of military equipment. They all continue obeying Federal laws and fighting the federal war on drugs – even where there are no local statutes to enforce. And local Sheriffs in America just love stealing money from their own constituents through the Federal program for asset forfeiture. (Last year, local cops in America stole twice as much money from American citizens as private criminals.)
The wickedness of police is obvious not only in these obviously criminal actions but also in the increasing aggressiveness of police against individual citizens, and against street preachers. It is also obvious that for all these years after Roe v. Wade, American cops have firmly taken the side of the abortion industry; for all these years we know of only one single police officer who has openly taken the side of the unborn – Chet Galagher – and he was promptly fired. In the early years of the pro-life movement, police in several American cities used their power to torture rescuers on the street, break their bones with nunchucks, and even kick pregnant mothers until their babies died. Yes, folks, these things were recorded in a documentary by Operation Rescue, The Brutal Truth. The documentary is on Youtube. In not a single instance has any police chief or Sheriff used their legal authority to take the side of the unborn and close abortion clinics in their jurisdiction. A couple of years ago Sheriff David Clarke, for example, used FOX News to say that “If black lives mattered, they would be protesting before abortion clinics.” What he hypocritically omitted was the fact that as a Sheriff, he has the power to ignore Roe v. Wade and close abortion clinics in his County. He not only has never done it, in his early career he has been among the cops who have attacked rescuers on the street, breaking up their protests.
Thus, there is not a single righteous cause ever joined by the American police. But it should be expected, given that police was created for that very purpose – to support wickedness, not righteousness. It is not a Biblical government, it is a counterfeit government, a pagan mockery of God’s government, and a pagan institution to subjugate the population. It is as much a Biblical authority as two sodomites are a Biblical family.
Churchian leaders, therefore, who use Romans 13 to call for obedience to the police are no different than those who call for legalization of sodomite marriage. Such churchian leaders are idolaters, and they are contributing to the destruction of the social order of Christendom. The Biblical government is not a government of executive decree; an executive government is a counterfeit government. When our own churchian leaders legitimize a counterfeit government institution like the police, there is no reason to not legitimize counterfeit government money, counterfeit education like the public schools, a counterfeit family of two sodomites, etc. They are all parts of the same assault on the Christian social order. And for Christians to be able to restore the rule of God in every area of their society, all these must be opposed and abolished – yes, including professional police. As long as professional police remains in our society, no matter how much we strive politically to elect the right candidates, no matter how much we work for the moral restoration of the American society, Christian liberty and justice will be endangered and eventually lost.
Therefore, from a Biblical perspective, just like government schools, the Federal Reserve, all the government regulatory agencies, welfare and Social Security, etc., the standing army of police must be abolished. It is not a true government, and it has never been meant as a true government – it is simply an occupation army enforcing the will of a pagan, wicked government. Supporting it, and using Romans 13 to call for obedience to it is to commit the same sin as the people of Israel in 1 Samuel 8: They have rejected God from being their King.