The Madison-Area DSA condemns the press release issued by the Dane County Sheriff’s Office on July 6, 2020. Sheriff Mahoney suggested that three Black people, legally bailed out from the Dane County Jail by “Free the 350” bail fund, were “responsible for crimes involving gun violence.” In doing so, he has revealed that the anti-black racial bias in the sheriff’s office is so severe that it inhibits the sheriff’s ability to maintain a presumption of innocence in cases when the accused person happens to be Black. By shaming supporters into no longer donating funds to the “Free the 350,” the Sheriff’s office is showing Madison where its values lie.
In solidarity with “Free the 350,” Freedom Inc., and other local organizations calling for the release of all incarcerated people from the Dane County Jail, the Madison Area DSA affirms its commitment to the abolition of policing and prisons. Additionally, we are calling for Sheriff Mahoney’s resignation on the grounds that such blatant anti-blackness should disqualify any person from holding public office. As socialists, we will continue to fight for a world free of racism, oppression, and exploitation, one without institutions like policing and imprisonment whose primary charge is to defend the unearned wealth and well-being of racial capitalism’s ruling class.