Regular readers will recall that the Violence Policy Center recently released a study entitled The Militarization of the U.S. Firearms Market. The VPC’s poison pen letter to the American gun industry was a profoundly flawed document aimed at distracting attention from the growing ATF Gunwalker scandal. That said, fair enough. The American firearms market is increasingly “militarized.” This year’s SHOT show devoted an entire floor to tacticool gizmos and gadgets—not to mention the enormous selection of military-spec pistols, rifles, shotguns, optics, ammo, clothing, etc. on offer elsewhere. And this is a problem because . . .

It isn’t. I’ve got no problem with civilians buying military-grade firearms or accessories. The chances of these sales “fostering” some kind of armed insurrection are A) small and B) smaller for living in a country where civilians own military-style firearms (thereby maintaining a balance of power, decreasing the desire for an armed insurrection).

The nutcase militia men practicing to fight against U.S. troops—a statistically insignificant fraction of a relatively small percentage of the total firearms market—are no more of a danger with mil-spec ARs than they would be with, say, a fertilizer bomb.

Once again, the gun grabbers have made a great landing at the wrong airport. They missed the militarization that need concern us: the dramatic proliferation of police SWAT teams and AR-toting cops.

Even before the attacks on the World Trade Center towers in 2001, American police forces were adding paramilitary units and related kit at a ferocious clip. In 1997, Eastern Kentucky University professor Peter Kraska estimated that 90 percent of cities with populations exceeding 50,000 with at least 100 sworn officers had at least one SWAT team.

Since 911 and the Bush administration’s acceleration of funding for “the war on drugs,” the trend has accelerated. In 2006, the Cato Institute’s study Overkill: The Risk of Paramilitary Raids in America chronicled the scope of the American police’s “weapons surge.”

Between just 1995 and 1997, the Pentagon distributed 3,800 M-16s, 2,185 M-14s, 73 grenade launchers, and 112 armored personnel carriers to civilian police agencies across the country. In 1997 alone, the Pentagon handed overmore than 1.2 million pieces of military equipment to local police departments.

Child psychologist Jean Piaget called this one with his Sensorimotor/Adaptive Model of Intellectual Development. Simply put, if a child sucks everything in reach, everything within reach is there to be sucked. If the police have a trained SWAT team, they will use it.

Back in ’97, professor Kraska’s estimated that 75 to 80 percent of SWAT callouts were for warrant service. By 2001, American SWAT teams were conducting over 40,000 “raids” per year. In the intervening 10 years, SWAT teams have continued to rise in number, even as the standard for their deployment has lowered.

“Criminals” suspected of simple drug possession are now subject to “no knock” SWAT raids, where the first they learn of their imminent arrest is a “flash bang,” followed by a sudden, violent influx of a squad of rifle-toting troops.

The Rutherford Files quotes an Army vet who highlights the lack of controls typifying police SWAT teams.

Most American police SWAT teams probably have fewer restrictions on conducting forced entry raids than do US forces in Afghanistan. For our troops over here to conduct any kind of forced entry, day or night, they have to meet one of two conditions: have a bad guy (or guys) inside actively shooting at them; or obtain permission from a 2-star general, who must be convinced by available intelligence (evidence) that the person or persons they’re after is present at the location, and that it’s too dangerous to try less coercive methods.

On May 5, an Arizona SWAT team took out 26-year-old Tucson native and former Marine Jose Guerena, firing more 70 shots, causing more than 60 wounds. The police helmet video clearly shows a SWAT team member firing a pistol indiscriminately into Guerena’s house.

Nothing new there. Time and time again, civilians have been slaughtered in the inevitable chaos of a SWAT team’s “no knock” raid. While civil lawsuits occasionally punish the trigger-happy transgressors, the tax payer foots the bill and the offending SWAT team lives to swarm another day.

In fact, the police industry’s newfound enthusiasm for “gun violence task forces” guarantees yet another mission for “underutilized” SWAT teams; one where the paramilitary police are likely to be even less circumspect in the use of armed aggression.

The English justification for their burgeoning police state—if you’ve done nothing wrong you’ve got nothing to worry about—doesn’t apply. American politicians and unelected officials may not be deploying SWAT teams for unconstitutional purposes at the moment, but they could. History tell us where there’s potential for governmental abuse, abuse occurs.

Why take the risk of creating a fascist police state by driving down this road, paved as it is with good intentions? Do the crime-fighting advantages of a highly-trained paramilitary police outweigh the threat to our personal liberty? In a word, no.

The Cato report rightly called for an immediate separation between American civilian police and the U.S. military, in terms of equipment, training and tactics. That hasn’t happened. In fact, the militarization of the police has spread to “normal” officers.

Since the 1986 FBI Miami shootout, American law enforcement agencies assume the average police officer needs immediate access to bullet-resistant vests and massive firepower. Military-style AR rifles have become standard-issue weaponry for police cruisers across the length and breadth of the country.

There is no way to stuff the SWAT genie back in the bottle, or take ARs from cops at the sharp end. You can no more “demilitarize” the police than you can disarm American citizens. (Here’s hoping society doesn’t pit one against the other.) There’s only one way we can protect ourselves from the people who claim to protect us: defund them.

Paramilitary police are the logical result of gigantic anti-terrorist and law enforcement budgets. By cutting funding to the bone for both of these activities—on the local, state and federal level—we can starve SWAT-mania to death. Truth be told, paramilitary policing is an extremely expensive, non-essential “service” that we can’t afford, both as taxpayers and freedom-loving Americans.

57 Responses to Is America Becoming a Police State?

      • AR-10 or a bolt gun is more accurate, and I don’t think police snipers engage targets much beyond 200m, so why do they need .308 at all?

    • You’re missing the point. The militarys got a bunch of old M14s sitting around collecting dust, why not pass them off to a bunch of cops?

      When you’re the chief of a local PD and you don’t have the Pentagons budget, would you rather accept surplus M14s or buy brand new AR10s?

      • AR-10, M-14, M1A, what’s the difference? What do they need 7.62×51 for? Engaging the Taliban at 800m in downtown Anaheim?

        • Because they can? 🙂
          From what I’ve heard, many people don’t like lighter .223 (and alike) cartridges, considering them underpowered and lacking of stopping power. 7.62 considered by some as more superior. Plus, as police, you have little problem of “overweight”. I mean gear and ammo – you usually don’t count every ounce, so carrying 100 .308 can be more progressive than carrying 300 of .223.
          Ex-Combloc has same “conversations” – 5.45 vs 7.62×39 vs 7.62x54R. One in head or two-three in torso. Et cetera, et cetera…

  1. The “War on Drugs” has been a national catastrophe, failing utterly in its ostensible purpose while having all sorts of (hopefully) unintended consequences. Militarization of LEOs is a prime example.

    There’s a very good reason that this country has traditionally separated law enforcement and the military. The military’s job is to kill people and break things, or at least threaten to do so. The police are supposed to protect and serve. When you train cops to think like soldiers they start seeing the civilian population as adversaries instead of partners, and neighborhoods as places to pacify rather than serve.

    Nothing, in my opinion, is more immenently dangerous to our rights than militarized LEOs. If the War on Drugs was “winnable” then we would’ve won it by now. It’s way past time we stopped this nonsense and let cops be cops again.

  2. “By cutting funding to the bone for both of these activities—on the local, state and federal level—we can starve SWAT-mania to death.”

    Is this not happening now? With the economy slowing, wouldn’t state and city agencies already be slashing budgets wherever they can? Perhaps, in anticipation of civil unrest, they might hang on to their SWAT teams most of all.

    Thanks for the post, you got my attention. I have seen posts like this elsewhere, but they read more like paranoid rants.

  3. Between “the War on Drugs” and “the War on Terrorism”, yes I believe two Fascist American presidents have pushed us ever closer to a police state more than anything else.

    • Only two? Nixon and Bush may have started their respective wars, but every president following them has continued and enhanced these flawed policies. With help from both parties in congress, of course. Can’t risk looking soft on crime when you’re pandering for the next re-election campaign after all…

    • clinton militarized the federal LEO’s (waco , ruby ridge) , bush gave us homeland security and TSA. obama is pumping it all up and politicizing the DOJ and ATF. both partys feed the beast, so to speak.

  4. It’s ok with me if 99 percent of law enforcement agencies disband their paramilitary units. The trend has gotten totally out of hand due to 9/11-driven funding… and let’s face it, police departments just like to have cool toys they don’t need. And we know that once they have this armament and ordnance, they will use it whether they need it or not. On civilians. It’s not going to just sit there. It has to justify its existence, so it will be unleashed on some pot dealer or chop shop.

    New York needs a SWAT team. LA needs a SWAT team. Stoplight, Indiana does not need a SWAT team. Or a K9 drug interdiction unit. Or an armored personnel carrier. Enough already. Police agencies have become more professional in recent years and this Ninja stuff has the potential to undo all the progress. Warrior hardware and the warrior mentality do not belong in police departments.

    • Uh oh. I can’t believe I’m writing this, but I kind of. Agree. With. Magoo.

      Wow. That was even hard to type.

      But yeah, the stupid part of the response to 9/11 has been the outrageous amounts of money wasted on crap, when the money could have been spent much better. It’s not the threat we know about. (If that were true, we could just fortify the airports and we’d be done.) It’s the threat we don’t anticipate. (Who, other than Tom Clancy, perhaps) could have envisioned a bunch of terrorists turning a commercial jetliner into a missile?) But there are LOTS of targets we need to harden. Think about what’s gone on in Europe since 9/11. Attack the NYC subway or the NY to Boston trains and you could cause some serious disruptions. Or what about attacking a mall. A big mall. Like The Mall of America. Nothing like attacking the heartland to bring the War on Terror up close and personal. So while I agree the money’s been spent badly, I don’t agree that only NYC, LA, Boston and such need to be watched for terrorists at work. Instead, we need to do things to protect our infrastructure, namely our water supply, food supply, and electrical grid. We need to worry about port security and border security. Do that, and then we can concentrate on the big targets.

      • Locking down some of the info that is publically available would be a step in the right direction as well. I don’t think we need to know where all the nuclear reactors are in NY. I don’t think we need to know what dams supply what states and how if those dams were popped this county would nose dive. The same thing is happening in Canada. I know at least a dozen folks that know the trunk line for all communications to the province I used to live in.

    • So I’m a mid-level narco dealer;Guess where I’m going to move to as my distribution center. Not LA,not Las Vegas not anywhere with a large well trained,well funded,dedicated SWAT team. I think I’ll go to say,Stoplight Indiana. It’s alot easier and safer to distribute from a small city with no dedicated SWAT team. DUH.

  5. This post is right on target. The police need more training in the constitutionality of their actions and fewer gizmos. Unfportunately, Americans have ceded manyof their constitutional rights in the name of security. It dosn’t help when SCOTUS sides with the cops over the civilians.

  6. We’ve been a police state for a very long time and it will only get worse. Our COMMIE states need to maintain a police state because only they are allowed to have guns, and they want to keep all their lil sheep in line.

  7. Yep, that’s always been my concern-a overly pumped SWAT team getting the wrong address, smashing in my door before I know what’s going on and who they are, my dogs getting shot, and I either get arrested for shooting back or shot. My pups are my babies, and any one mistreating them or roughing up my girl would have to put me down before I ruined his day. The worst is that this does happen, that this isn’t some idle dread.

    • Yeah, I hear you, Cujo. I recently found out that my social was traced to a convicted felon who’s crimes start with robbery and end with assault on a woman and evasion. Who is to say that the same folks that confused me with him on the credit/criminal profile search could not be a SWAT team?

      • It’s like this predisposition that the dogs will be dangerous. If so, they could tase or spray the pups-or even non lethal munitions like rubber pellets, pepperball gun etc. If the house raid were announced to some of these (not) “dangerous” suspects, the dogs could be rounded up in to a side room. My dogs are my children, I got Piggy, the Staffordshire, while I was recovering from my 2006 stroke by migraine. She means the world to me. Marching in and shooting the dogs sets the atmosphere to me-and not a good one.

  8. If you want to find out about SWAT teams gone wild (great dvd, terrible for MD citizens), just google “maryland swat.” The People’s Republic of Maryland is case in point for the shenanigans referenced above.

  9. Hey Joe…’commie’ isn’t an acronym, it’s just short for Communist and shouldn’t be capitalized. Last time I checked there were no states in the United States that were running a command economy with a totalitarian political system. That means there are no communist states. Maybe you should look up Communism and Socialism in an encylopedia? A lot of people could stand to do that. I get so tired of the dolts that think socialism is a form of government.

      • Ah, no.

        If we do not feel the need to tolerate fools among our law enforcement, then we had best not tolerate foolishness among our own. Using ‘commie’ as a pejorative is like a gun grabber’s use of ‘assault weapon’. They both make you want to pound your head into your desk. Repeatedly. I believe I will have an aneurysm if I hear one more foolish person refer to any aspect of the US government, politicians, etc as ‘Communist’, ‘Socialist’ or ‘Fascist’. Repeating the words as pejorative terms when the word itself does not fit the thing being described is the first refuge of the incompetent. Let’s not go there, nor let anyone we care about go there.

        • I’m sorry if I offended you, Mark. I was merely pointing out that Joe’s use of the term ‘commie’ is something he does a lot and if you read a lot of his posts his point is that the country is becoming more and more restrictive. If this offends you, there is little I can do. Again, for the subject in which it is used, it works.

          The use of the terms Communist, Socialist or Fascist is often not used literally, Mark. I would hazard to say that those that use it are showing disagreement and throwing insults that loosely define what they mean. In this case, restrictive, commanding, ruling.

          Dial down the anal meter and what people are trying to say comes across, not what you read.

        • What’s intended is obvious, it’s just a bad way of saying something. I know what people mean when they say ‘The shoulder thing that goes up’ ‘Assault weapon”Dangerous high capacity magazines’, etc. And I’m sure the people that say those things have legitimate reasons in their own minds as to why those terms make sense. It’s just that the rest of the world doesn’t view those people as having a relevant viewpoint (whether they do or not) because of their poor command of the English language. If you want to have 50% of the US population instantly disregard what you’re saying, use terms that you feel comfortable with like ‘commie’.

          Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. We are the face of gun owners in the US when we do things that pop up in the public eye (like posting comments on the internet). To some degree, we should hold ourselves to a higher standard than we would otherwise.

          But maybe that’s a bunch of hogwash and we’re all just walking, talking camo-wearing NRA gun nut stereotypes. *shrug* You can always say what you want to say, but before you do, it might be worth stopping to think about how it makes you look to others, especially others that aren’t in the same group of people you find yourself comfortable in being counted a member of. If that’s too much to bother with, more’s the pity.

    • I know you’re right Nate, but I prefer to call them COMMIE’S cuz I hate COMMIE’S and it makes me feel better. I’m not to PC and even though you’re correct, I’ll still be calling them COMMIES cuz that’s how I feel about them.

  10. I agree with Nate on the commie thing, and Brad I believe that they are referring to Nixon starting the War on Drugs.

  11. Mumbai attack. Handful of determined guys paralyzed a major city for a couple of days. Mumbai Police had some Lee-Enfields, piss-poor tactics, and lack of a plan to take back the city. SWAT has a purpose, but it’s gonna take awhile for them to respond and set up. I’m a fan of equipping the patrol officer with the tools to disrupt an attack in its infancy. This golden 10-15 minutes of an attack are gonna be where we disrupt their plan and turn the tide.

    • nothing better than a 12 gauge pump with buckshot and slugs for CQB . cops have had them for , oh, about 90 years. besides , what was missing in the Mumbai response was courage. the responding officers hid . almost any gun will do if you will do.

    • I’m a fan of equipping the patrol officer with the tools to disrupt an attack in its infancy.
      +1. Shotgun, M16 variant should be in the trunk. Hell, a scoped, bolt action rifle (in .243 Winchester?) in the hands of a trained officer could be an excellent tool.

      That said, given the union degeneracy in many PDs, making distinctions between patrol officers based on firearms proficiency is about as likely as enforcing weight and fitness standards. It happens, but it’s rare.

  12. WTF is wrong with most of the people on this blog. Where has all this hostility for Law enforcement come from; You all sound like a bunch of 60’s hippies. Next thing is you’ll be calling them “pigs”.

    There is a large portion of readers who are either active LE have family members who are in LE such as myself in the latter category. I agree that there are still some “rogue” elements in the LE community,no one is perfect,anyone can be corrupted;but for the most part,they are just men and women like us who are sometimes afraid for their very lives on traffic stops. They just want to be able to go home to their families when their shift is over.

    I’ve noticed this trend on this site towards a real problem with the men and women who are trying to protect civilians. I once had a hatred towards every and all police regardless. But, I grew up. I learned that there are truely some really ‘bad cops’ out there who use that position with bad intent. But most are just regular folks with families.

    Come on people,wake up!! The world is a bad,bad place now. LE deaths in the line of duty are at an all time high and rising every year. These criminals and thugs don’t give a rip about police. It’s almost a game to see who can kill the most officers.

    I’ve read alot of reports about SWAT teams over-reacting and dumping mags. They’re still human and they still experience fear. They’re still for the most part much more disciplined and trained than the average officer and civilian. I’m not excusing them for when things go horribly wrong and I think they should be responsible and accountable for their actions.

    The bottom line is this: Since drug dealers/criminals/gangbangers have upped the ante on the firepower they carry now,LE has to up their firepower too (i.e. West Hollywood shootout,or even Columbine). It’s almost like an arms race. One side ups the ante and the other side has to up the ante a little more, and so on, and so on. Therefore the quote, “militarization” of the LE community.

    If the evil-doers are using military grade hardware, I don’t want to show up with a S&W .38 spcl and a couple speed loaders. Gangs and drug dealers a super hard-core now because they have no respect for human life at all. I can understand a call for SWAT to serve a “no-knock” warrant on a known meth labs and such but not simple warrants. And just like our military,defunding or disbanding them is a BAD idea.

    Don’t you think that would just embolden the bad guys? If I was a bad guy that would be good news for me. In alot of smaller department that cannot necessarily afford a full-time dedicated SWAT team,officers typically pull double-duty as patrol officers until the call goes out for SWAT.

    • Firstly, If a cop is so paralyzed with fear that he has to dump 2-3 mags worth of ammo into a suspect then maybe he/she should not be a cop. No one has forced them to become a cop. If you can’t take the pressure or are too scared, quit.

      Secondly, I find it disturbing that you keep calling us “Civilians”. Guess what: Cops are civilians as well. It’s that Us versus Them attitude that many people here are complaining about.

      Thirdly, I’m nowhere near a Hippie. I do remember seeing news reports, tures and documentaries about the ’60s. I remember seeing Police holding fire hoses, unleashing attack dogs and beating people with batons who were just trying to be recognized as citizens and marching for their God given rights.

    • Where has all this hostility for Law enforcement come from;

      As a cop, you are nothing but a threat to me. Even as a card carrying (CCW), law abiding, business owning, tax paying citizen. There is virtually nothing positive you offer me while the 10,000+ federal, local and state statutes you enforce offer endless opportunities for me to lose, big time, in any encounter with you. While I know plenty of cops and respect plenty of cops, as a group, I refuse to trust any of you further than I could throw you. The Police are a political organization, with their own agenda, tasked with upholding laws created by corrupt and/or incompetent legislators. You are not my friend. You are not here to help me.

    • I’m not sure that it is correct for US, but isn’t “incompetent cop” problems usually related to big departments and by this – big cities? I mean, I can’t remember too much fuss about some good ol sheriff from little department in the middle of nowhere, but there are more than enough “bad rep” for LE in large cities. Am I right, or it’s just happens that news I read were sorted out this way?

    • In the case of the SWAT issue, I have no issue with cops. I have a huge issue with the policy that results in no-knock raids. The cops are just doing their jobs.Even if we assume that there is a valid need for that much firepower every time you serve a possible drug possession warrant, that is not a good enough reason for a no-knock. You are putting the officers, the residents, their neighbors, and their pets at risk of death, when nearly any intelligent being seeing that much firepower outside their door with a badge in their face is going to surrender immediately. It is not worth risking everyone’s life just to prevent the off chance that someone throws some dope down a toilet.I have no problem with cops. I have problems with policies that put cops and me on opposites ends of a gun without my having been proved a threat.

      As an aside, I have absolutely no problem with cops having any firearm in their trunk that I’m allowed to have in my trunk. I just a problem with it being used when it isn’t necessary.

  13. reaganmarine84, I’m the antithesis of a 60s hippie, but I can’t overlook the number of police crimes committed every year. As a lawyer, I sued criminal cops who decided that they were the law and that their job was to abuse people and not to protect them. There are so many thousands of criminal acts by policemen against citizens every year that it’s impossible to keep track of all of them. If you want, I’ll send you a partial list and I hope your ISP has adequate bandwidth to handle it. You will be stunned.

    I believe that most policemen are regular guys, but if you take enough regular guys and inculcate them with the prevalent “us against them” mentality, nothing good can come of it. We saw it in Germany, and we are seeing it right here right now.

    • “I believe that most policemen are regular guys, but if you take enough regular guys and inculcate them with the prevalent “us against them” mentality, nothing good can come of it. We saw it in Germany, and we are seeing it right here right now.”

      +1000 ralph my sentiments EXACTLY!!!
      a lot of these guys/gals as individuals are fine people and can be great civil servants. but eventually if this us/them mentality creeps in then they may forget their true roles in society.

      they are there to help people, keep order, uphold the law. you definitely can’t have a “warrior” mentality to do that job. also, the more that the regular joe’s are disarmed and dependent on the “authorities” the more of a divide will exist between the police and citizens.

      btw i live in Kali & while most of my interaction with the police has been good & professional (i’m very polite & respectful, where i live is very quiet). i constantly see cops ITCHING to flex their muscle cuz they see no real action. it’s common (at LEAST every other day) to see a car (or skateboarder) pulled over with the kid sitting on the curb & 3-4 patrol cars giving them a hard time.
      i once saw cops pull up to and approach a couple kids on skateboards no more than 12 yrs old with their hands gripping their pistols as if ready to draw! there was NO WAY these kids could be considered a threat!
      Since nothing ever happens here i’m wondering why i now see that the motorcycle cops have AR’s in SBR config mounted on them. it’s a relatively $$$ area so i know the police are well funded & there are many more than needed.
      one of the less pleasant experiences i had with a cop here was when i drove a friends ’89 corolla with my wife to get some beer in the afternoon. i saw the cop driving the opposite direction hang an emergency u-turn once he could clear the divider & was on a power trip from the start. i know he only pulled me over because i wasn’t driving a benz or bmw & i didn’t look like i “belong”. i just drive an accord normally but i guess an old corolla is just not acceptable. anyways i took all of his verbal abuse & excuses with polite yes/no sirs & politely declined a trunk search (which got him a little steamed) but he let me finally go. had i been 10 yrs younger i’d probably have been sitting on the curb surrounded 10 cops waiting for 4 hrs till they could get some warrant. geez, what have we come to!

      • Funny you should mention Germany. I was in West Germany in the 80’s and saw three Polezei with submachine guns beating a one-armed Turk with their batons, on the sidewalk. He wasn’t resisting, he was too busy bleeding. I was a cop, a good cop, but in general, I don’t trust many of them. Bottom line in my last department was politics. The sheriff decided not to run for reelection when he couldn’t account for big money missing, and a captain got caught embezzling $500,000. The captain served 3 months in federal prison. He also happened to be SWAT. The sheriff retired owning 2 shopping centers. I medically retired with a stroke and no pension. I guess I should have used their retirement program!

  14. “The nutcase militia men practicing to fight against U.S. troops—a statistically insignificant fraction of a relatively small percentage of the total firearms market”

    I don’t agree with that. But “statistically insignificant” is like beauty – it’s in the eye of the beholder.

    You know what the “increasingly “militarized”” aspect of gun sales proves? It proves that owning guns as part of your god-given fundamental human right to self-defense is bullshit. I already saw the leap from “right to life” to “owning a handgun” as bullshit, but now you kind-of make the argument for me. You might have had a point with your insistense on carrying a 9 everywhere you go, but how does one of those tricked-our AR-15’s fit into the picture. It doesn’t that’s the answer.

    In a way you’ve backed youself into the position that I’ve often allowed, which is your WANTING the gun is enough. You don’t need the Constitution or the Natural Human Rights or the Bible to justify anything. You want it and that’s enough. It is a free country after all. Of course you must submit to certain restrictions approved by the government. Sorry.

    • Wow mike, that’s one hell of a stretch to get this conversation derailed. Ar’s are great protection against 4 legged and 2 legged predators at distances of across the room all the way to 600+ yards.

      I see no issue with viewing them as defensive as well as offensive weapons designed to protect life as much as to destroy it.

  15. “Mark says:

    June 29, 2011 at 11:03 AM

    What’s intended is obvious, it’s just a bad way of saying something. I know what people mean when they say ‘The shoulder thing that goes up’ ‘Assault weapon”Dangerous high capacity magazines’, etc. And I’m sure the people that say those things have legitimate reasons in their own minds as to why those terms make sense. It’s just that the rest of the world doesn’t view those people as having a relevant viewpoint (whether they do or not) because of their poor command of the English language. If you want to have 50% of the US population instantly disregard what you’re saying, use terms that you feel comfortable with like ‘commie’.

    Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. We are the face of gun owners in the US when we do things that pop up in the public eye (like posting comments on the internet). To some degree, we should hold ourselves to a higher standard than we would otherwise.

    But maybe that’s a bunch of hogwash and we’re all just walking, talking camo-wearing NRA gun nut stereotypes. *shrug* You can always say what you want to say, but before you do, it might be worth stopping to think about how it makes you look to others, especially others that aren’t in the same group of people you find yourself comfortable in being counted a member of. If that’s too much to bother with, more’s the pity.”

    I agree with a lot of this, Mark. Unfortunately you are missing my point. Some people do talk this way and despite what you think they are not just disregarded outright. Not everyone has perfect graces when it comes to writing or getting their point across. That doesn’t mean they don’t have a good point.

    Again I will say turn down the anal meter because I believe you think that I use those same words. Read what I am writing. Some people speak creatively and use all kinds of words to compare what they feel and think. It doesn’t automatically disqualify them as not worth hearing. If that is what you think then frankly it is your thoughts that need to be ignored.

  16. I think it is really important not to demonize the weapons or the gear that swat uses, but to stick to the tactics and mindset.

    Tools are tools. If I use a hammer properly I can build something worth being proud of, if I use it incorrectly I could just as easily tear something/someone apart. Patrol rifles are not a problem as long as law enforcement officers recognize the time and the place for them. They shouldn’t be pulling them every time they do a traffic stop, but it is just another tool to deal with a potential problem.

    If we can stop the us against them everyone is a perp mentality that way too many officers have right now it will not matter how they are equipped. I would gladly take an officer that respects his duty to every tax payer and recognizes that he is in our service armed with a submachine gun, assault rifle, and RPG over the officer that just wants to flex his muscles and sees everyone as a perp armed with a kubaton.

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