AOC pushes back on Obama's 'defund the police' critique: 'The whole point of protesting is to make people uncomfortable.'

AOC pushes back on Obama's 'defund the police' critique: 'The whole point of protesting is to make people uncomfortable.'
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY).Mario Tama/Getty Images
  • Following former President Barack Obama's critique of the "defund the police" slogan on Wednesday, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., offered a counter argument.
  • "Do you want to actually get something done, or do you want to feel good among the people you already agree with?" Obama said.
  • AOC argued the slogan played a role in elevating the issue of police brutality rather than harming progress.
  • "To folks who complain protest demands make others uncomfortable... that's the point," she tweeted.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez tweeted a counter argument Wednesday to former President Barack Obama's critique of "defund the police" as a slogan for the progressive left.

Obama expressed his frustrations with the slogan during an interview with Snapchat published Wednesday morning.
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"You lost a big audience the minute you say it, which makes it a lot less likely that you're actually going to get the changes you want done," the former president said.
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"The key is deciding, do you want to actually get something done, or do you want to feel good among the people you already agree with?"

AOC pushed back without mentioning Obama by name, arguing the slogan was effective.

Rather than activists insulating themselves in an echo chamber by using the controversial term, AOC said it helped raise the profile of the issue because "it wasn't until they said 'defund' that comfortable people started paying attn to brutality."
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Other progressive Democrats joined her in criticizing Obama's comment, with newly elected Reps. Jamaal Bowman of New York and Cori Bush of Missouri mentioning him by name.

AOC's main contention was that what Obama found ineffective about the slogan was precisely what she saw as its biggest asset. The role of activists, she argued, is to make people uncomfortable and call attention to issues, not to refine their language around maximum persuasion.
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"The whole point of protesting is to make ppl uncomfortable," she tweeted.

"To folks who complain protest demands make others uncomfortable... that's the point."

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