Question of the Day: Who’s to Blame for Police Militarization?

(courtesy ammoland.com)

“The Jul/Aug 2014 issue of The Police Marksman is now available online at www.policemarksman.com from Hendon Media Group,” ammoland.com reports. “This issue’s ‘Bullseye’ focuses on long guns with reviews of three AR-style rifles. First up is the Mossberg MMR, an inexpensive carbine that eliminated some standard features to keep the price down. Next is the MGI Hydra, an amazing multi-caliber, quick-change AR rifle that can be tailored to any police assignment. Last, Ruger’s SR-762 ups the ante with a .308 caliber semi-automatic that turned in sub-MOA accuracy and 100% reliability.” To say the timing of this announcement – and the picture accompanying it – is a little off would be like saying . . .

Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson is in a world of trouble for shooting Michael “Gentle Giant” Brown. And yet, if gun rights advocates are arguing that Americans should be able to keep and bear any rifle or firearm they choose, why not the police? After all, the police are civilians, too.

The weapons are not the major disconnect here. For one thing, it’s the double standard. In many states, non-law enforcement civilians can’t own AR-style rifles. Throughout the U.S., non-LEO civilians can’t own modern fully-automatic machine and sub-machine guns.

The other, bigger problem: the MRAPs, drones, flash bangs, full camo costumes and all that operators-operating-operationally equipment given by Uncle Sam to the Mayberry PD. The vast majority of it is completely unnecessary, of course. As we saw in the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombing “shelter in place” (a.k.a., imposition of martial law), this über military-style kit enables and encourages a military mindset. Which supplants – dangerously – old-fashioned police work.

The question is this: who’s really to blame for police militarization? Aren’t the judges and politicians the real problem? If judges didn’t sign off on no-knock raids, if politicians didn’t appoint, fund and abet proto-fascists in police departments, would police militarization even be an issue? And if that’s true, aren’t voters the cause of all this militarization misegos?

comments

  1. avatar Shire-man says:

    Hawaii Five-O and Miami Vice.

    1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      To a great extent, I blame television as well. First of all, television portrays endless dire scenarios that lead us to believe we need “special response teams” everywhere. More importantly, television seems to portray almost every single law enforcement officer as a saint with heretofore unseen achievement of morals, ethics, and goodwill toward citizens.

      1. avatar Sixpack70 says:

        Just like how every bio weapon, chemical weapon or dirty bomb in TV or movies is always accompanied by some imaginary military response team that is ready within hours to cordon off the affected area. It just isn’t going to happen and doesn’t exist in the first place.

        1. avatar John in AK says:

          You forgot the big red LED numbered countdown thing, and the two wires, one red and the other not red. Or, maybe, all the wires are the same colour, but must be easily accessible underneath an easily-removable cover, IF there’s a cover at all, right next to the big red LED numbered countdown thing which may or may not be covered as well, so that the hero can gamble by cutting just any wire to show how brave he is. Or by cutting all the wires, which may stop the big red LED numbered countdown thing but may not stop the ‘ticking’ sound, which requires the hero to throw the bomb, if it’s small enough, into a nearby pool of water or, if it’s too big and too late, to run madly away only to be thrown into the air harmlessly with arms flailing while a big fireball appears in the background and destroys everything in its path except the hero who will arise unscathed except for a scratch above his right eye, covered in debris (but never any body bits).

      2. avatar DJ says:

        Let’s be fair, there are also plenty of depictions of crooked cops as well (Training Day, the depiction of police in “Sons of Anarchy”, etc.)

        1. avatar The Brotherhood of Steel says:

          Don’t forget Bad Lieutenant…. That dude was bad…

    2. avatar Pro2Aguy says:

      I think the OBVIOUS answer of “who is to blame” is clearly the Government (both sides of the aisle to be sure). “Big Brother” is nothing short of incessant is his quest for uber “micro-management” of every single aspect of its complacent citizenry–this includes what we are witnessing today, the ever-so-increasingly apparent in-your-face “Police-State” be it the overly-militarized SWAT residential raids for many times what amounts to misdemeanors to the literal Martial-Law lockdown of one of America’s biggest city’s, namely, Boston all the result of two-lone young-punk ‘Osama’ wannabes…The sight of Boston MS. resembling a Ghost-Town whereby a pin-drop could be heard at 5PM if dropped on a DownTown major intersction remains an indelible imprint that chills me to this very day…

      That said, please do not mistaken the aforementioned for that familiar, infamous stereotypical mentality of that “lefty” of whom we all know too well…Quite the contrary, I am a fervent supporter of LE/Mil and have members of my family both past and present that proudly serve/d our Great Nation. Yet they too indeed worry that the Government is setting its sights/goals on what can only be seen as the eventual “herding of the sheep” if you will, a society/environment of which our seemingly clairvoyant ingenious Founding Fathers warned us of some 250 years ago…”The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants…” It’s my sincere fear that our Government has run amok…

    3. avatar Full Cleveland says:

      Dragnet and Combat with a touch of Goldfinger. The Dirty Dozen has something to do with it too.

  2. avatar Vhyrus says:

    Its Bush’s fault! No wait, the NRA!

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      It’s White Privilege! No, it’s Male Privilege!

    2. avatar Rick the Bear says:

      Are we still trying to figure out who shot JR? 8>)

      1. avatar Steve Day says:

        Are you saying that we’ll wake up and find this whole “government employees running amock” thing was just a bad dream?

        Will we all wake-up tomorrow and find a government that has sound policies and a huge surplus of cash… with smartly dressed police officers helping children that have fallen off bicycles and cheerfully waiving to local residents on their beat?

        ..If only!

  3. avatar Fed Up says:

    At the first signs of inexcusable abuse in my county, I’ll publicly demand elimination of SWAT.
    When I don’t get it, I’ll start with recall petitions against those who are responsible.

    Fortunately, although there was some bragging about receipt of a new MRAP a few years ago, showing off that toy is the only thing our sheriff’s SWAT has done to get itself mentioned in the press. If they were to start using the MRAP for routine warrant service, it would present no problem that a little thermite coudn’t solve.

  4. avatar Paco says:

    Anyone who buys the official 9-11 version.

    1. avatar The Brotherhood of Steel says:

      Oh God here we go. Pukes* …. Pukes again*….. Cries*…. Pukes a few more times*

      1. avatar DJ says:

        “Fire has never been hot enough to melt steel before.” – Rosie O’Donnell

        1. avatar The Brotherhood of Steel says:

          Hahaha yes!

        2. avatar Wood says:

          Good grief. How does she suspect smelting works? I’m still waiting for her to leave after W wad elected.

        3. avatar Full Cleveland says:

          That’s why it’s steel. If fire could melt it it would be metal.

      2. avatar Steve Day says:

        There’s a video of compiled footage that shows during the collapse of buildings WTC 1, 2 + 7, there were flashes around the entire buildings that occurred in a sequence that preceded the collapse of “that floor” by a second or less. The flashes happened all the way down and were about 3 stories ahead of the collapsing structure above it.

        I have yet to read anything that would explain this effect, other than a deliberately planned detonation.

        1. avatar NYC2AZ says:

          Then you’re not reading enou… oh, sorry, sorry… I’ll bring it down to your level; Derpa de derp da derpity doooo.

        2. avatar The Brotherhood of Steel says:

          Video compiled of footage??? Oh really? Tell me who compiled and edited that footage… Was it from loose change??? Because that POS who created loose change was caught on record saying how his entire documentary was a scam to make money off of dimwits like you, he also admitted to editing a vast quantity of 9-11 footage for his movie. This footage has since been posted up all over YouTube by retards like you not even realizing it’s 911 footage that’s been tampered by this POS trying to make money. Now go learn how to conduct reasonable thought.

        3. avatar NYC2AZ says:

          The best, and most appropriate direct rebuttal of Loose Change is Unfastened Coins.

        4. avatar The Brotherhood of Steel says:

          NY2AZ, Ahahahaha! Wow. That’s great, going to remember that one. And check out the comments section, people actually believe that shit! Talk about gullible… Damn

        5. avatar Steve Day says:

          I’ve never heard of a “Loose Change” video, but here’s a link to the one with firefighters testimonials, on-site video of molten steel which the official investigation denied their being any presence of, as well as flashes in the windows of multiple floors as the structures collapsed.

          2012 New Evidence of 9/11 being an Inside Job Con…:
          http://youtu.be/SiEVzlIfSXk

          Aviation fuel and office supplies do not burn hot enough to melt steel – that’s why they use thermoelectric induction furnaces in steel foundries. Blacksmiths that use burning coals and air forced into their forge only get steel hot enough to bend, shape or forge-weld (the hammering itself generates the extra heat to weld the surfaces. There are methods that use explosives to weld steel together using that same principle).

          If your mind is not open to the possibility then fine, but don’t just dismiss evidence that you don’t want to see.

        6. avatar NYC2AZ says:

          Before I get into this (again), I want to address your last point:

          “If your mind is not open to the possibility then fine, but don’t just dismiss evidence that you don’t want to see.”

          9/11 “truthers” are the most closed-minded group I have ever had the displeasure of “debating.” I have at least had anti-gunners admit that they were wrong about some part of an argument, but “truthers” are too self-absorbed in their fairly-tale “everything is a conspiracy and I’m the only one smart enough to realize it” bullshit.

          “I’ve never heard of a “Loose Change” video,”

          I find that hard to believe as LC is a general prerequisite for the truther club. But just to clue you in, the whole truther movement and every conspiracy video with slick editing and creepy background music is copying the success of LC.

          “but here’s a link to the one with firefighters testimonials,”

          They aren’t testimonials as none of those first person “interviews” (more like grabbed clips of other reports) claim a controlled demolition. They are describing what happened to the best of their abilities by using common transferable language. None of them directly say it was a controlled demolition. Not one. Second-hand voice overs claiming to be from the firefighters don’t count. Further, every time I counter with firefighter actual testimonials that directly refute the controlled demolition angle, you guys just yell “shill” and “you’re in on it” so if you choose to go that route, I’ll give you a preemptive ‘go fuck yourself.’

          “on-site video of molten steel which the official investigation denied their being any presence of, as well as flashes in the windows of multiple floors as the structures collapsed.

          That’s not “molten steel,” it is aluminum. See Air France Flight 358 crash photos (no building required).

          2012 New Evidence of 9/11 being an Inside Job Con…:
          http://youtu.be/SiEVzlIfSXk

          And how many videos have you watched with counter evidence? How many websites have you researched (such as Popular Mechanic’s lengthy debunkfest)? How “open-minded” are you? I have looked into both sides at great length. I knew 2 people who died that day. My father knew over 30 people who died. If there was some sort of insidious plot, other than by a bunch of pissed off Muslims, I wanted to know about it. Yet every Twoofer claim is easily debunked when you take away the creepy music, suspicious voice overs and enormous straw men from these cheesy Youtube videos.

          “Aviation fuel and office supplies do not burn hot enough to melt steel – that’s why they use thermoelectric induction furnaces in steel foundries.”

          The steel didn’t have to melt. It only had to be weakened enough for the 100,000 to 250,000 tons above the fire floors, of WTC 1 and WTC 2 respectively, to bend the steel enough to initiate a progressive collapse. The weight above the fire floors and gravity did the rest once the steel gave way. “Aviation fuel” (or in this case ‘Jet A’) burns at 980 degrees Celsius. At 550 degrees Celsius, steel loses 50% of it’s strength. Above 800 degrees Celsius, steel loses 90% of it’s strength. The Jet fuel burned for at least 10 minutes at around 980 C and then the office fire continued at temperatures between 550 C and 800 C until the steel buckled. The fact the buildings stood for as long as they did is quite remarkable.

          “Blacksmiths that use burning coals and air forced into their forge only get steel hot enough to bend, shape or forge-weld (the hammering itself generates the extra heat to weld the surfaces. There are methods that use explosives to weld steel together using that same principle).”

          You actually admit that steel can bend at lower temperatures (bold mine). How would you like to deflect your argument now?

        7. avatar Steve D. says:

          Aluminum does not change color when it melts! (Unless you’re living in alternate dimension where regular laws of physics do not apply)

          If you don’t believe me, go take a blowtorch (preferably enriched with O2 to reach the temperature required) and melt a piece of aluminum. It will merely smoke as the impurities are “cooked off”.

          Steel and iron glow when molten – changing from red to orange, yellow, then finally white. So what was the metal that firefighters saw and cameras recorded underneath the rubble at WTC and pouring from WTCs 1+2 before they collapsed. It clearly wasn’t aluminum, lead or glass (which melts at even higher temperatures than steel).

          If you blindly dismiss those facts and evidence then you are not in any position to be defending the official report.

          You don’t know everything despite what you think.

          I have never claimed to be a “truther” or hung out with “truthers”. I don’t live in a vacuum void of logic or different opinions. I examine evidence and reach my own conclusions. I don’t claim to have all the answers – though you obviously do. Your application of “labels” and personal attacks are irrelevant and pointless.

        8. avatar NYC2AZ says:

          “Aluminum does not change color when it melts!”

          Where did I say it “changed” color? Are you denying that aluminum changes colors depending on temperature? See video links below.

          “(Unless you’re living in alternate dimension where regular laws of physics do not apply)”

          Stones, glass houses, fill in the blanks.

          “Clarification:
          “It clearly wasn’t aluminum, lead or glass (which melts at even higher temperatures …”

          You put this in quotes. Why? Is this not your opinion? Is this taken from somewhere? How is it “clearly” not aluminum?

          “Safety glass (the type specified by building codes for use in windows, doors and partitions) melts at around 1700C – not that much higher than I thought as compared to A36 Structural Steel which melts at around 1425C to 1535C.”

          Aluminum melts at 660 degrees C. I’m not sure why you’re bringing all this other nonsense into your argument unless it’s deflection.

          If you don’t believe me, go take a blowtorch (preferably enriched with O2 to reach the temperature required) and melt a piece of aluminum. It will merely smoke as the impurities are “cooked off”.

          And where do you think those impurities are going to disappear to in a building that is on fire with airplane, office, and building debris laying everywhere? Again, “no building required” pictures of burnt airline hulls here, or here, or here, or here, etc, etc, etc.

          “Steel and iron glow when molten – changing from red to orange, yellow, then finally white. So what was the metal that firefighters saw and cameras recorded underneath the rubble at WTC and pouring from WTCs 1+2 before they collapsed. It clearly wasn’t aluminum, lead or glass (which melts at even higher temperatures than steel).”

          As far as the colors of Aluminum, see here and here.

          “If you blindly dismiss those facts and evidence then you are not in any position to be defending the official report.”

          Projection. I’m sure you’ll find a way to “blindly dismiss the facts and evidence” in my post… as you have done with the mountains of easily available facts and evidence that refute your claims.

          “You don’t know everything despite what you think.”

          More projection?

          “I have never claimed to be a “truther” or hung out with “truthers”.”

          But, you are even if you don’t.

          “I don’t live in a vacuum void of logic or different opinions. I examine evidence and reach my own conclusions.”

          So you throw out more than 90% of all the gathered evidence and focus on the less than 10% that needs a little more explaining? Because conspiracy!

          “I don’t claim to have all the answers – though you obviously do.”

          The classic truther cop-out and deflection: “I’m not sure what all this means, but until there’s proof that “they” didn’t do it, I believe that “they” did… spread the truth!”

          “Your application of “labels” and personal attacks are irrelevant and pointless.”

          Ahh, but they fit you so well.

          Let’s cut the crap. Answer these questions if you want to continue this maddening confab: Who is behind this vast conspiracy? Is every reporting outlet that has conducted tests to disprove truther claims in on the conspiracy? Are the fathers, husbands, sons, brothers, and cousins that combed ground zero looking for the remains of their dead loved ones in on the conspiracy? How can the perpetrator(s) of this apparent “easy to see with the right facts” conspiracy remain hidden in the day in age of wikileaks? How do you make extraordinary claims without providing extraordinary evidence (while simultaneously discounting simple explanations to your extraordinary claims)?

        9. avatar Steve D. says:

          Clarification:
          “It clearly wasn’t aluminum, lead or glass (which melts at even higher temperatures …”

          Safety glass (the type specified by building codes for use in windows, doors and partitions) melts at around 1700C – not that much higher than I thought as compared to A36 Structural Steel which melts at around 1425C to 1535C.

    2. avatar Hannibal says:

      “Let’s take a test sample. There’s 4 of us, you’re a retard. That’s 1/4th.”

      1. avatar Paco says:

        It’s a compliment to be called names on this rediculous board. It seems here fools like to mentally jerk each other off. Have at it.

        1. avatar The Brotherhood of Steel says:

          Feel free to take your ignorance on over to MDA, the Democratic Party, or any one of Bloomhomos many other worthless organizations. I’m sure you’ll fit right in with the Libturd scum.

      2. avatar NYC2AZ says:

        +3 South Parks

  5. avatar uncommon_sense says:

    “… if gun rights advocates are arguing that Americans should be able to keep and bear any rifle or firearm they choose, why not the police? … The weapons are not the major disconnect here. For one thing, it’s the double standard.”

    ^ This!

    Local deputies and police keep loaded long guns in their vehicle within arm’s reach. If I do that in most states and local deputies or police see it, they are going to arrest me and send me to prison.

    The problem is the pervasive attitude in our country that government is superior to everyone … and since police represent governments’ interests, they can do pretty much whatever the Hell they want. We have to correct the attitude that government is superior.

    1. avatar mad mike says:

      Absolutely correct. And cops are civilians, and swat team members are NOT “operators”!

  6. avatar Bobby McKellar says:

    It started out with all the “big city” SWAT teams. Every Podunk P.D. In the nation had to have a SWAT or Tactical Entry Team.
    It began with the program that the government started that allowed smaller and smaller P.D.’s to have access to military small arms at first (at first it was OLDER M16’s and M16A1’s)….now it has expanded to EVERYTHING.
    My 2¢ is that it has been the Federal Government’s idea all along to militarize as much of the police as possible….this program sort of puts the PD’s (IMHO) in their “pocket”. I believe it’s just exactly THAT underhanded..PLUS, the BIG cities then have extra stocks of weapons and ammo in strategic areas. I know, sounds a bit iffy to me too but I’m going “worst case scenario” with this little bit of “conspiracy theorem”. 😉

    1. avatar Jake Tallman says:

      No, that really doesn’t sound unreasonable. The government has shown time and time again that it will stop at nothing to strip us of our rights. And given that there have been far more crazy conspiracies that have been proven true (such as the CIA’s utterly insane MKUltra program and, more recently, Holder’s false flag operation, Fast and Furious), I’m inclined to agree with you.

    2. avatar Forrest says:

      I can attest to this. I grew up in Mississippi, in a town that has had 2 shootings in it’s 40 year existence and one was accidental. As soon as the big cities got them, we got them; even before Jackson. They don’t have an MRAP though.

      Yet.

  7. avatar mlk18 says:

    It would be awesome if there was some kind of a blog that we could go to to hear about guns and gun related topics. Until that day comes I guess were stuck with this anti-police militarization blog. By the way the other day I saw one of the local police officers look like he was wearing boots. Military style boots! Better fire up the media machine!

    1. avatar Jake Tallman says:

      Do you genuinely not see a problem with Police who think they are soldiers in a warzone, who treat their citizens as if they are enemy combatants, and who have exactly zero accountability? God, I feel bad for you.

    2. avatar S.CROCK says:

      I am always baffled by the people who don’t see the connection between police militarization and the infringement on your rights (gun rights specifically).

      “I guess were stuck with this anti-police militarization blog.” Uhhh no your not stuck with this blog. Feel free to leave at any time. I am also always baffled by people who comment as if they are forced to read TTAG like its for a school project.

    3. avatar John Fritz - HMFIC says:

      50,000 comedians out of work and you’re auditioning.

    4. avatar Zachary marrs says:

      The firearm blog. Untill then, this isn’t your website, soooo bye

    5. avatar Garrison Hall says:

      ” . . .Until that day comes I guess were stuck with this anti-police militarization blog. . .”

      Please. Go. Away.

    6. avatar Jim Barrett says:

      I appreciate your frustration with the constant beating of this drum, but here’s the basic problem: There are a boatload of issues in this country that need to be addressed, yet are not. The reason and quite honestly the basic reason why we keep electing the same bozos to Congress that continue to do nothing but argue, point fingers, and ask for money for their re-election is that the average voter has tuned things out.

      We are all so caught up in our daily issues that we don’t look at the bigger picture. Take the national debt for instance. This is truly a crisis of epic proportions. Some day, we are going to default on a loan payment and the excrement is really going to hit the air moving device. We should be demanding balanced budgets right now – no more deficit spending – but by and large we are not because we don’t think it really affects us. We refuse to see the big picture.

      The militarized police thing is another growing problem, that left unchecked is going to have some serious consequences down the road. Read Rodney Balko’s book, The Rise of Police Militarization and you’ll see what kind of stuff is going down every day that you know nothing about. I did a review and a short summary of that book some weeks ago here in TTAG – do a search and you’ll find it.

      RF and others in the TTAG crew have the opportunity to use this blog and its ever increasing audience to sound the horn. Sure, they have to constantly beat the drum – but only because things are not improving. You are free to disagree – but please don’t make the mistake of the average voter. Get informed on the issue. If you still think TTAG is over-doing it then, well, that’s your opinion and while we will still have to disagree, I’ll have great respect your position because you came to it after doing the research.

      Ultimately, that’s all that I ask. While I’d love for everyone to agree with me about everything, it’s not going to happen. I come at certain issues from a different place than other people and as such, we will never agree on everything. I’d rather have you support the same positions as me in the voting booth, but if you understand the issues and simply have arrived at a different position, then I welcome your voice. You may be right and I may be wrong on something – it happens all the time – but I (and others) can only have our minds changed by cogent arguments backed by facts, not emotions.

      1. avatar SteveInCO says:

        With regard to your deficit spending example, Jim, it’s even worse than you portray. There are large numbers of people–yes on that side of the aisle, who still drink the Keynesian coolaid and think that cutting federal spending would be grossly irresponsible, and lead to a full blown depression that would last ten years, at least. In fact, they bitch that the refusal to spend even more is what’s causing this economic slump to be continue on and on. You and I and other people who have their heads screwed on straight, on the other hand, see the absurdity of this and think it’s grossly irresponsible to continue to do so.

        Even if more people got involved as you suggest, this argument would continue to take place up on Capitol Hill. It’s not a case of people just being unwilling to hold a bunch of slackers to account and get them to do their jobs; it’s that there’s no agreement in this country as to what “doing their jobs” would entail.

  8. avatar Billy says:

    It’s not who, but what. Militarization of our police is not just about equipment, that is silly. It’s about the change in mindset, and no other single issue has helped change that more than the war on drugs.

    1. You betcha Billy. The war on drugs is 100 years old and hasn’t accomplished shit. There is a constant stream of new laws that promise to lock up (poor) people longer and longer which puts the police ever more at odds with people who already feel like they’re playing against a stacked deck. Can you say Ferguson? Don’t tell me that it’s mostly the bad guys’ own fault ’cause I’ve said that myself but it seems to me that if we just legalized pot and did a better job of treating/supplying addicts we could save everyone some trouble. And money, crazy expensive.

    2. avatar NYC2AZ says:

      “no other single issue has helped change that more than the war on drugs.”

      Bingo! And before that, the war on alcohol.

      1. avatar The Brotherhood of Steel says:

        Now that’s a war the American People truly won.

    3. avatar S.CROCK says:

      And Billy is our winner. Nixon is who we should blame because he officially declared “the war on drugs.”

      1. avatar Ralph says:

        George Bush did it! Because he’s responsible for everything — global warming, ISIS, ebola . . . . He even knocked up Rebecca on “Breaking Amish.”

      2. avatar Jay in Florida says:

        Yup it is Nixons fault and in my time Nelson Rockefeller too. Both complete idiots.
        Didt the government learn a thing during Prohibition????
        No 2 did any more to accomplish zero nada nothing then the War on Drugs bullshit has and still is..
        Billions spent 1000s killed and not a dammed thing has changed.
        Nor should it.
        I want my cocaine let me have it dammit.
        See me on the street buzzed, lock me up.
        Yup Billy hit it on the head.
        What a waste of time effort and resources. To do nuttin at all.

    4. avatar Paco says:

      War on Drugs was definitely a stage, but you don’t see the War on Terror as just as significant if not more so?

      1. Yep. Ironic that we kill 15000 per year on our roads and people go apeshit over terrorists and one gun accident.

      2. avatar Jus Bill says:

        Yup, the good old never-ending GWOT. Utterly useless except to keep the Wheels of Industry ™ turning forever.

      3. avatar Hannibal says:

        We only rarely get terrorists blowing shit up but I’m pretty sure people toke up every day.

    5. avatar Indiana Tom says:

      Gee, I was going to post that, but you beat me to it. Anyone remember the SWAT TV show back in about the mid 1970s? Columbus Indiana has a SWAT team and it seems they use it on just routine drug raids and other mundane tasks. SWAT may be for special operations, but anymore it is just for routine stuff as well.

  9. avatar dwb says:

    No, it’s incentives: A 1994 federal program that gives away (mostly) free toys; And, every government agency (and by the way every corporate department) operates on the following budget principle: Use It or Lose it. If you go into a budget year with unspent funds, or unused equipment in a corporation, the bean counters say gee, you must not need it. Govt agencies are the same way. That’s why you see enormous buy orders right at the end of the budget year (around Sept for the Feds). The “justification” comes after the fact.

    Use It or Lose It is never going to end (and, tight budgets only ups the ante). However, we *could* stop giving tiny towns military equipment at a fraction of the cost. If they had to pay full price, they could not afford it.

    1. avatar DJ says:

      Speaking of incentives, let’s not forget forfeiture. They use those toys to go after assets they can seize, which provides money to buy and maintain more toys. I remember the days when the state police didn’t all drive brand new Dodge Chargers.

      1. avatar Jus Bill says:

        Hell, I can remember the days when state police weren’t highwaymen.

      2. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

        Exactly.

        The asset forfeiture program is, IMO, blatantly unconstitutional. How is it legal to seize someone’s property without due process and a conviction?

        Simple: Legislators and judges decided to allow the cops to go on the grift.

        The SCOTUS finally ruled that they can’t seize real property, because there’s no danger of real property being flushed down the toilet and/or destroyed. But the only way such a case got to the SCOTUS is that the cops seized land and real estate under asset forfeiture laws.

  10. It would help if the media would quit calling them heros every time they write a traffic ticket. Their egos tend to be a problem anyway. Really, they don’t have the hardest or most dangerous job, and they’re not the most important people in our society, yet how many times a day does some know-nothing talking head say it on the airwaves? The police are getting a little full of themselves and the public seems to be losing sight of the fact that it’s not about the police. If a person is innocent until proven guilty does it make sense to serve a warrant by bashing in the front of a house with an armored vehicle when the suspect has no history of violence? Not to me but it seems that the police think that they are justified in any level of force since we must do anything to protect the f’ing “heros”, everyone elses’ rights be damned. I don’t want the police think that I don’t like them, they have a hard job and most of them mean well. But there is a bubble here that needs to have some air let out.

    1. avatar Jake Tallman says:

      I totally agree. I hate this overwhelmingly popular idea that cops risk their lives every day doing a dangerous job. They don’t risk their lives any more than I do by driving to and from work, and LEO’s have a pretty low fatality rate. Less than 40 cops were murdered on the job last year, out of hundreds of thousands nationwide. That stat really puts into perspective the much vaunted “bravery” and “selflessness” of cops who “put themselves in harm’s way every day for us”.

      1. avatar Ralph says:

        Hey, Jake, do you really think it’s easy choking out a big, fat black guy with asthma until he dies? Lemme tell you, it’s a tough job and not everybody can do it.

        1. avatar karlb says:

          Steroids are not just for athletes. Citizens are not going to choke themselves, ya know.

        2. avatar int19h says:

          Sure, it’s a tough job. Lots of risks and all that.

          The only jobs more riskier are those that make us all think of how brave and self-sacrificial the men doing them must be. Jobs like truck driver, garbage collector, farmer or fisherman (all of which have higher death rate than cops).

      2. avatar John in AK says:

        Let me make you a proposal: The next time you are driving to work, if you should hear gunfire in the distance, I expect you to drive directly to the source and start looking for the gunman. Sure, you can have a handgun–it’s only fair. Hell, I’ll even give you body armor. Everyday stuff, of course.

        You say you are not willing to do that, that you’re not getting PAID for it? OK, I’ll kick in a few bucks. Tell me how much it will cost me to have you go find that gunman and take him into custody.

        Go ahead. I’m waiting. Oh, by the way–if you get killed, we’ll have a lovely funeral and write nice things about you in the newspaper. Once. Your family will be so proud. . .

        Why are you hesitating? After all, isn’t driving to work just as dangerous as taking on a gunman? Sure, gunmen are rare, and so are traffic accidents, and by the percentages cops rarely get shot, and if shot, don’t always die, so why even think about it?

        Still hesitant?

        Figures.

        1. avatar MiamiC70 says:

          Revenue collectors and politicians lap dogs that is all cops are.
          I guess they never read the side of their car “to protect and serve” CITIZENS not other cops.
          Don’t let them fool you with the honor and and protect BS its your job you get paid don’t like it, can’t deal with it go flip burgers. That’s about the only job most of these POS are qualified for anyway.

          Try solving a crime or actually contributing in a beneficial way to society and then cops won’t have to worry about everyone hating their guts. Go out and walk beats you fat donut eating POS.

        2. avatar DJ says:

          Some of us have no problem moving toward the sound of gunfire. The police don’t have a monopoly on that.

          Of course, if a private citizen did what you describe there is little doubt in my mind that the local prosecutor would have them up on charges.

          More than 90% of police officers will leave the force without being involved in a lethal force incident, just like most soldiers leave the military without having fired a shot in anger.

          The problem I have with police militarization is that it reflects an attitude among officers that they are somehow “soldiers” in “combat”. If that is the case who is the enemy? The enemy are the citizens the swore to protect and serve,

        3. John, no one is saying cops don’t earn their money. Look on any most dangerous jobs, even driving trucks is riskier. I was an ironworker (retired) and was nearly killed more often than the average cop but never once complained that I was special and was owed a special place in society. And if I didn’t like my job I could quit. Anybody can be replaced including cops ironworkers and presidents.

        4. avatar John in AK says:

          No, they don’t. However, I don’t think that you can honestly tell me that you, DJ, do so as a matter of course in every instance, unless you are in the military. If you do, you are either insane or a fool. Come to think of it, cops who do it are also either a little bit insane or also foolish. However, they do it all the same. Doesn’t make sense, does it?

          You couldn’t PAY me to do that. Wait a minute. . . you did. And I never liked doughnuts much. And I really did solve crimes. And I always had to get out of my patrol car to do something–it was too hard to drive into people’s living-rooms as the doors tended to be too narrow, plus it left a mess.

          And I never thought that I was particularly ‘special,’ no more special than anyone else who volunteers to take on a dangerous job. We are all equally stupid in that regard.

        5. avatar DD says:

          DJ, Your shortfall is believing that the general populace is the intended enemy of the police. Much to the contrary, the intended enemy, as you suggest, are the law breaking individuals that the police are sworn to protect you against and who have been deemed law breakers by the general populace. The question is, how did you get this so screwed up in your mind in the first place???

        6. avatar MiamiC70 says:

          Typical cop mentality. It’s “us” vs. “them” the wanna be warriors.

        7. avatar John in AK says:

          Was your mother frightened by a policeman while she was carrying you in the womb, He Who Is Named after a City in Florida and a Volvo, or did she just drop you on your head once too often? You’re taking this ‘troll’ role ‘WAY too seriously, and it just makes you sound foolish. Before you finish, though, don’t forget to throw in the word ‘Nazi’ or ‘Gestapo’ somewhere. ‘Storm Trooper’ or ‘Jack-Booted Black-Suited Government Thug’ will do if you can remember how to spell all of the words. Feel free to copy and paste.

        8. avatar mad mike says:

          Nice straw man argument…. you must be a liberal or a cop.

          I have been in more gunfights (3) as a civilian than 99% of cops have been….and I didn’t have any of the gear or the comfort of knowing back up was on the way.

          800 hours of training and a year of service in California and you get your basic certificate…. the same as a hairdresser….sure are special aren’t they!

        9. avatar The Brotherhood of Steel says:

          I actually get in a gun fight before I get out of bed in the morning, every single day.

        10. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

          Well, here’s one of the series of events in my life that made me highly critical of law enforcement:

          Back in the early 90’s, I worked in a garden spot of California known as “East Palo Alto.” Back in 1992 or so, they had the highest homicide rate (42 per 100K population), mostly due to drive-by gun-downs and the drug war between rival gangs. That’s higher than Chicago is today, BTW. E.PA was one hot mess. The “city” (such as it was) spent the majority of their scant budget money on their own police department, mostly because their black residents were pissed off that the county sheriffs were “too insensitive” towards their residents. So their voters voted to have their own police department.

          At night from ’91 to ’94 (when I left that particular office building and was moved to a better location in Silicon Valley), you could hear gunfire – most nights, in fact. Mondays and Tuesdays tended to be reasonably quiet, but on Friday and Saturday nights, it sounded pretty sporty.

          As a result of a brutal work schedule, I’m there in an office building, listening to this, night after night. I’d get into work about 1000, leave about 0300 – that was a pretty typical day, six+ days a week for me in that time. You could say I spent “significant” amounts of time in “in the hood,” listening to this crap.

          After having my truck broken into, and finding a spent 115gr pills from 9’s laying in the parking lot over a period of months, I decided that I’d make the effort, use my expertise with guns and start doing what the cop propaganda always tells the public they want: eyes and ears to tell them where/what the problems are.

          So I started dialing the cops’ non-emergency line, telling them “OK, there’s gunfire in E. PA, I hear it coming from X area, streets A & B, I’m located at 1234 Big Intersection, in such-n-such building.” Some times, I could tell what round was being popped off – a 9mm makes a different report than a shotgun, for example. That’s pretty easy stuff for a gun guy to discern.

          Want to know what I got for my trouble? Cops grilling me about “how do you know so much about the type of gun? How do you know where the gunfire is coming from?”

          The cops could not conceive that a “civilian” knew more about guns than they did. They could not conceive of a “civilian” who could ID a gun by sound, or tell them that the mangled bullet found in the parking lot was originally a 115gr FMJ ball round for 9mm Luger. “You have no forensic evidence experience! You don’t know what that is… you’re full of crap.”

          Right.

          OK, so let’s postulate that I know nothing, but there’s still gunfire coming from “over there.” Once, we could hear it as I was getting grilled. Did the cops rush off and look for the shooter(s)? Nah. Not that I saw. Much safer to stand there, grilling a white guy than to be going into the ‘hood and dealing with the black hood rats with guns. But after two of these “interviews” that wasted about 20 minutes of my time (each), I decided to not be quite so forthcoming. Over the next couple of months, I’d call anonymously, no longer giving my name. But they had caller ID, and they had the main trunk number. They came looking for me. More interviews.

          After enough of this BS, I quit calling.

          After that, and many other experiences with law enforcement over my lifespan, here’s my take on cops:

          If you don’t like the job, then quit and go get another job.

          If you want to take the pay and bennies, then STFU and do the work.

          I, as a taxpayer, have no more patience for you cops crying “poor, pitiful us.” Your job is simply not that dangerous.

          You want a dangerous job? Go work on a ranch with cattle in a pen. Better yet, go work around Holstein cattle on a dairy. Then get back to me with how much “danger” you’re in on the cop job.

  11. avatar Scorpion says:

    “Aren’t the judges and politicians the real problem?”

    No. We, the voters, are the problem. When small fractions of eligible voters turn out for contests for mayor, city council, alderman, school board, and all municipal offices various and sundry, then the judges and politicians who favor militaristic police, anti-gun ordinances, and other things we find oppressive simply stay in office.

    Our country’s form of governance demands and energetic and engaged citizenry. Americans, as a rule, are neither. Until we shut off the TV, put down the game console, close our internet browsers and go out and talk to our neighbors and support candidates who share our vision for our city — and support their challengers if they fail to do so — we’ll just keep getting more of the same.

    1. avatar John M. says:

      Wait, you think that if more people voted that the situation would get better? I think we’d be lots better off making people prove they are responsible before we let them vote themselves bennies from the public fisc. There are lots of good ways to do this, IMHO.

      1. avatar DJ says:

        Well we can dream.

        The right to vote is the biggest entitlement of all. We’re way past the point of successfully being able to restrict the franchise.

        The idea that only people who pay more in taxes than they receive from the government in services, for example, is a non-starter since most people now consume more services than they pay in taxes. And when you look at the voting habits of the wealthy, I’m not sure that would be a solution anyway. Rule by Bloomburg and Soros would be even worse than the status quo.

  12. avatar Noishkel says:

    In my estimation it’s not about the hardware that the police have as much as the mindset. It seems that every since 9/11 the DHS has been pushing the concept that there’s a domestic terrorist behind every blade of grass.

    1. avatar Jus Bill says:

      CORRECT!!!

  13. avatar Tommy Knocker says:

    “…the votrrs fault…”

    Got that right ! Just like folks that complain about ______ ,if you fail to get off your arse, organize, and make you voice heard, then shame on us.

  14. avatar Ralph says:

    The Feds. Hampered by 18 U.S.C. § 1385 which diminishes the Federal Government’s capacity to turn the US military into an occupying army, the Feds have “deputized” many local police forces to do the same thing. No worries — the officers will get home safe at night, which is all that matters. Besides, its for the children.

    1. avatar Indiana Tom says:

      I think the militarized police are taking the place of the military as an occupational domestic force.

  15. avatar Jake Tallman says:

    Wait, there’s actually a publication unironically titled, “The Police Marksman”? That’s funny.

    1. avatar Indiana Tom says:

      The official publication of the NYPD.

  16. avatar Dev says:

    Nixon, Congress in 1970 and the war on drugs.

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      And every President and Congress since. Or do you think that Nixon was so wildly popular that every president and Congress has blindly followed his lead since he was forced to resign?

      1. avatar Dev says:

        Of course not, but that’s where this “war” began. Since then it’s created a massively profitable prison industry and gotten a lot of people elected on rhetoric and the pretense of action.

        1. avatar Ralph says:

          Yes, that is where the War officially began, but so what? We’ve had seven Presidents after Nixon who have been pushing the same failed policy and expanding it. Blaming Nixon for today’s War on Drugs is like blaming Woodrow Wilson for today’s high Federal income tax rates.

        2. avatar DJ says:

          Ralph is right. It is TOTALLY Woodrow Wilson’s fault. In fairness, he inherited it from William Taft. Blame Taft!

        3. avatar John in AK says:

          Taft generally followed the ground rules set by his predecessor, Theodore Roosevelt–so, it’s Teddy’s fault!

        4. avatar John in AK says:

          No, it isn’t. Look up ‘Harry Anslinger’ to find out just when the ‘war on drugs’ began. Nixon merely gave it a formal title. Old Harry was a true reactionary extremist nutjob, and lasted 32 years as the head of the Bureau of Narcotics.

  17. avatar mk10108 says:

    We are the problem and our police leadership is lacking. When one finds out town A has a new government gadget, then the conversation begins on why our town doesn’t…human nature. Its up to the Chief’s to say NO.

    Folks ready do not understand power we have over elected representatives. Take time to read meeting agenda & minutes. If something bugs you and your friends, show up and grind away at your 3 minute public comment. Its the only way you’ll move the needle.

  18. avatar cknarf says:

    Post 9/11 America’s ‘EVERYONE’S A TERRORIST’ mindset?

  19. avatar The Brotherhood of Steel says:

    Uhg,

    Police Militarization Thread Summary….

    TheTruthAboutGuns

    Professor RF, MTWRF 8am-8pm,

    8/30/14

    Argument Group A: “If your for police militarization your a facist statist libturd licking jackbooted thug worshipping Nazi who hates freeom! And your probably fat too!!!”

    Argument Group B: “If your against police militarization your a lazy communist cop killer worshipper who supports anarchy and you hate those in uniform! And your fatter, and most likely gay!”

    Conclusion: Que more insults and me puking…

    1. avatar DJ says:

      Yep. It’s videogame chat.

      If you are worse than I am = n00b
      If you are better than I am = hAx

      1. avatar John in AK says:

        Pwned!

    2. avatar John in AK says:

      I don’t want to talk to you no more, you empty-headed animal food-trough wiper! I fart in your general direction! Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries!

      1. avatar mad mike says:

        So sad to think you were given a badge and a gun.

        1. avatar John in AK says:

          I hate to tell you this, but that is a quote from Monty Python’s ‘Holy Grail.’ Quite humorous for those that can understand it. I must assume that you either never watched it, or if you did, didn’t have someone nearby to explain it to you. Educated people would get the joke.

          Missed again, Quickdraw.

        2. avatar John in AK says:

          ‘They’ didn’t GIVE me a badge and a gun. I bought the badge (well, really just the Crackerjack box that it came in as a prize) so that I could legally carry my OWN gun loaded with exploding poisoned bullets with which to shoot innocent bystanders from my MRAP while trampling on their Constitutional rights just for fun, all while eating white babies and killing puppies. Labrador puppies. Just the females. Shot ’em in the back while they were eating ice cream cones. Smiling.

          Isn’t that what you wanted to hear? Now that I’ve satisfied your prejudices, can we move on?

  20. avatar Jay in Florida says:

    Police should go back to the old ways that I grew up with.
    Yah we ran from the cops as kidz because that’s what kids do.
    The cops knew us by our names, we knew them as Officer so and so and by his car number.
    We didn’t fear them as much as we feared them bringing us home in the back seat of the squad car to our dads.

    LEOs should leave the UberCop thing up to a small well trained bunch used when needed.
    Not all this Ubber looking and acting like the Army fighting street kids and minor crime.
    Id like to see more of Officer Krumbkey getting my cat out of a tree.
    Rather then a fully deployed SWAT team shooting it out of the tree with a howitzer.

    1. avatar Jus Bill says:

      We didn’t fear them as much as we feared them bringing us home in the back seat of the squad car to our dads.

      The urban street thugs of today don’t have that worry because:
      a. They were on their way to jail to see daddy anyway.
      b. The PO-lice won’t get out of their cruiser for anything but a donut.
      c. They don’t know who or where dad is, and Grandma’s out working.
      d. All of the above.

      1. avatar Indiana Tom says:

        Sad, but true.

    2. avatar jsallison says:

      Shooting cats with a howitzer… I’ll be in my bunk

  21. avatar Sammy says:

    The answer to you question is: “The Failure in Chief of the United States of America” aka Barry Serato aka B.S. aka BHO.

  22. avatar Rusty Chains says:

    I think the best fix for this is the monetary incentive needs to be stopped….allowing the cop shop to keep any money or assets stolen by the cops from citizens is bad policy. Get rid of RICO seizures and that takes a bunch of the wind out of the sails that drive this Flying Dutchman! I still think requiring all SWAT Teams nation wide to wear hot pink camo would help.

  23. avatar John in AK says:

    Folks, no matter how much you want to indulge in nostalgia, this country is no longer Mayberry, if it ever was, and the days of the friendly, overweight, elderly Irish beat cop are over.

    Something we forget is that the friendly, overweight, elderly Irish beat cop survived to retire only if the people on his beat were friendly, too, and if the bad unfriendly ones didn’t do much beyond petty crimes and, when caught, didn’t want to shoot their way to freedom. In the instances were the beat cop DID run up against someone who wasn’t willing to be arrested and also had a gun, he tended to end up dead. He was armed only with a club and a low-powered revolver (maybe a .32 Colt New Police), had no body armor, no radio (just a call box, if that, on a corner somewhere) and no backup. So, if someone ‘got the drop’ on him, he died. Cops have been getting killed (even the friendly ones) since there first WERE cops–and sometimes in the nicest neighbourhoods, too.

    I do not think any of you really want to go back to that.

    In the same vein, just how many of you would willingly go up against a man with a good rifle if you only had a handgun, and he had the advantage of distance? Is that what you want for your police officers? Sure, there are excesses, and times when it seems that overwhelming force is seriously misused. On the other hand, there are times when overwhelming force properly applied prevents a situation from escalating. Remember, a handgun is something you carry only because a policeman is too heavy, and is also the gun you just use to fight your way to the long gun you should’ve had to begin with.

    Frankly, it is incredibly naïve to believe that every police problem can be solved with a kind word; Often, it takes the proverbial kind word and a gun (the bigger, the better) to accomplish the job.

    I believe that we all can comprehend that regular police body armour does not impede rifle bullets; Likewise, police helmets will not stop anything beyond a .22 or low-velocity fragments. If such is the case, doesn’t it seem rather stupid to have the cops put themselves into the paths if incoming rounds when they might use an armoured vehicle instead? What would YOU want to do, in their position: Bravely advance a la WWI soldiers into the gunfire, or hide behind a tank? Give me a tank, any day. I am allergic to bullets; They make me break out in little red dots. A good thickness of steel prevents exposure.

    Yes, there are times when it doesn’t LOOK ‘good’ to have all of that weaponry on display; However, ‘optics’ and ‘perception’ really don’t mean much–it’s the reality of how they are used that matters. In the civil world, where the police are the alledged enforcers of What’s Right and Good, firepower and tactical superiority are just as important as they are in the military world when force is what’s needed to solve a problem. Having a vastly-superior amount of firepower and good tactics can be the agent of something ending up coming out positively, where with parity of force the ending might not be so good. Me, I don’t EVER want to be in a ‘fair fight;’ I don’t want to lose, particularly if the stakes are my life or the lives of my loved ones. Do you?

    I suppose that this idea might be of some use: If the World is such a tame and friendly place, a Mayberry wherein cops can go back to being Officer Friendly with their .32 Colts and frock coats, with lollipop trees and cotton-candy flowers growing by soda-pop rivers, why do we feel that we should walk around packing a concealed pistol?

    Tell you what: When you are willing to disarm and go back to carrying nothing more than maybe a pocketknife, that’s the time when the police need to do the same. Until then, I’ll keep my pistol, and will grant that the cops can have as much firepower as they NEED, but only when they need it, to make sure that the bad guy either gives up without a fight, or dies–preferably horribly and with much gore, to convince the next one not to do that thing that he did. And, if he lives, by accident, he should get a fair trial followed by a first-class hanging.

    1. avatar Jus Bill says:

      OK, so the “good old days” are gone – agreed. But…

      Something we forget is that the friendly, overweight, elderly Irish beat cop survived to retire only if the people on his beat were friendly, too, and if the bad unfriendly ones didn’t do much beyond petty crimes and, when caught, didn’t want to shoot their way to freedom. In the instances were the beat cop DID run up against someone who wasn’t willing to be arrested and also had a gun, he tended to end up dead.

      That would be the perp that wound up dead, sooner or later, because you didn’t EVER want to kill a cop – Genuinely Bad Things would happen to you when the law caught up with you. And 9 times out of 10 that friendly, overweight, elderly Irish beat cop learned to handle himself at an early age, and could still beat the living sh1t out of anyone or any size. And that billy club could kill you if the person wielding it knew how to use it.

      When you are willing to disarm and go back to carrying nothing more than maybe a pocketknife…

      I do that every day, and not by choice, as I live in a formerly free state. And I have LOTS of company. And you can keep the snide “that’s your problem” comment – I don’t really wqant to uproot my life, take a financial loss on the house, and start all over again where I don’t know a soul just so you can feel smug.

      1. avatar John in AK says:

        I’m afraid that your nostalgia is somewhat hazy; Beat cops were not the magicians of fisticuffs you imagine, and they did lose fights. As I said, Mayberry is not only gone, it never existed. In the Good Old Days, cops were allowed to shoot more often than they are now, and could shoot fleeing unarmed suspects. No, let’s not go back there.

        I do not feel ‘smug’ that you do not live in a free state; However, and without sarcasm, it IS your problem. I am sorry for you.

        1. avatar Jus Bill says:

          You did not grow up where I did at the time I did, so you don’t get to lecture me about my upbringing. And I don’t criticize you for living in the most underpopulated state in the union, separated from the US by a foreign country, where everything but fish and snow has to be imported by sea or air, and that makes nothing that can’t be made overseas better and cheaper, so you have absolutely no ability to feel sorry for me, sonny.

          I’m staying put and trying to improve the freedom of the residents where I live; that’s more than I can say for you.

        2. avatar John in AK says:

          I want my oil back, you ingrate. Me and the penguins need it to heat our igloos. And our Alaska-made high-quality AR uppers and lowers need lubrication.

          C’mon, lighten up. I wasn’t criticizing your upbringing, or commenting on the size of your male member, or saying that your wife/daughter/dog was ugly, or anything else. I used to think that MY town while growing up was ‘Mayberry,’ too–until I found out that it was just as seamy as any big city, only on a smaller scale. VERY disappointing, that. MY town had Robert Hansen in it. Look him up. He made some GREAT doughnuts. . . the rest was pretty bad, though.

          I think that I do my part to try to free YOU from tyranny by voting properly in national elections and joining the NRA, which is all that I CAN do from a distance; It’s your job to do the footwork at the local and state level. Sympathy, feeling sorry about something, isn’t pity, My Friend. . . I mean that I SYMPATHIZE with you and would do what I can to change your situation–but I’m not going to move to your state and become a voting citizen, if that’s what you want. After all, I have all of the fish and snow that I can STAND. Now, if you want your freedom already won. . . move HERE. It’s not that bad. The sun is shining, today. About 65 degrees, no snow, and the Polar Bears have been at a safe distance all this week. The Native Hunters that live in the igloo across the street keep them at bay with their spears and incessant chanting. That does get on the nerves, though.

          Oh, look at the time! I have to hitch up the dogs to the sled and drive down to the 7-11 for some more blubber.

          Gotta go.

        3. avatar Jus Bill says:

          My we are touchy tonight…

          And no, I’m not moving, as I said above. I had enough remote tours in the service. And PLEASE don’t move here, K? We can do just fine without your sympathy.

        4. avatar John in AK says:

          Right. You don’t want to play nicely? Doing just fine, eh? Enjoy that pocketknife. Meanwhile, I’ll be eating my fish and blubber while standing up to my hips in snow and carrying my Glock 30. Or any other handgun that I own. No limits. Unregistered. No registration. Ever. With large-capacity standard magazines. Just as many rounds as I can put in, 17 rounds in some cases. Legally. Concealed. Almost anywhere. In any city or town in the state. Wherever I go. Legally. Without a permit. Legally. Maybe even carrying it openly on Sundays. Or maybe Tuesdays. Legally. Right out in the open. No permit. In my car, on my hip, shoulder holster, go nearly anywhere I want. Legally. Even in Federal and State parks. Rifles and shotguns, too. Fully exposed. Loaded. In public. Legally. Except courthouses, police stations, school, daycare, and domestic-violence shelter buildings and property, or places where alcohol is the primary commodity sold for consumption on the premises. So, I can go into restaurants that serve alcohol so long as I don’t drink. And liquor stores. Legally. Without a permit. Ever. If you DO have a CCW permit, of course, which is totally voluntary, you then have reciprocity with 37 other free states, and can get one that negates the need for a NICS check for firearm purchases. No extra charge. Good for 5 years with automatic renewal. If you want one, that is, because it’s totally voluntary, as no permit is needed. Legally. No prohibitions on Class III weapons, either. Got a federal tax stamp? Go for it. Legally.

          I hate to gloat, of course.

          You don’t have any oil, by the way, do you? You have a state income tax? Oh, too bad. I wouldn’t like that. Don’t have it here. We have oil. And penguins (no, that’s a lie–we don’t have penguins. Just kidding. Polar Bears ate ’em all.). I suppose you don’t have a Permanent Fund, from which each resident gets a yearly Dividend? This year, I hear that it’s only around $1980. Per person. Each. Including children. No taxes except Federal. Every year since 1982. Every year. Like clockwork. Smallest one was, like, $331.29. Free money. Just for living here. Most years are around $1000. Biggest one was well over $2000. Free. Just sign up. Direct deposit if you want it.

          Enjoy that pocketknife.

          And I’m not touchy. It’s those Native Hunters chanting again. Plus, the sun isn’t due to set again until October–hard to get any sleep.

    2. avatar DJ says:

      I have no problem with how they are equipped, generally (the MRAPs are a bit unnecessary) but I have a problem with the “us vs. them” mentality that leads to violations of the civil rights of law abiding citizens as well as needless casualties when officers use excessive force, bad tactics, bad judgment or a combination of the three. Peaceful interactions with the public aren’t necessary because we all live in Mayberry, they’re necessary to remind officers that 90% of the public is law abiding. There has to be an understanding that the public at large isn’t the threat.

      The police have developed a nasty habit of viewing themselves as soldiers in an area that is under occupation and populated by insurgents. Since the public becomes the “enemy” in that scenario, it’s only natural to put the safety of police officers ahead of the safety and civil rights of the public. That’s what has to stop. If you aren’t willing to put yourself at risk to protect the community you shouldn’t be wearing a uniform – whether that’s a police uniform or a military one. Officer safety does not trump public safety. Officer safety does not trump civil rights.

      1. avatar John in AK says:

        Do you think that the wide publicity occasional dramatic incidents get, and the tendency of the media to report such things with such intensity because they are newsworthy, has something to do with your perception of a problem growing by leaps and bounds, when it really isn’t a big thing? I mean, if your nose wasn’t being rubbed into it on a daily basis by a ratings-hungry media, would you even know that such things happen on occasion, and that those occasions are statistically rare?
        Or is it like the epidemics of Satan Worship, and Child Kidnaping, Cattle Mutilations and Serial Killers, and Gang Initiations, that turn out to be either random, or isolated, or just plain hoaxes?

        What you say about ‘risk’ is true; However, it isn’t necessary to accept ALL risk, and to refuse to try to mitigate the risk by all possible reasonable means, just to ‘look good.’ SWAT cops still get killed, no matter what gear they have; That’s the nature of the risk. Having proper gear mitigates the risk, but does not eliminate it. If one could just ‘gear up’ and have no risk at all, nobody would ever be killed in combat. That, however, does not logically preclude soldiers from wearing ceramic armour and helmets and using armoured vehicles, does it? Yes, they still get killed, but not for want of trying to stay alive through proper gear.

        What we really need to do is to eliminate the threats; Disarm everyone but the police and military, confiscate all firearms and knives and pointy sticks and rocks, and then the cops won’t NEED all of that scary stuff. /sarc/

    3. avatar Indiana Tom says:

      Gee, I have had relatives and ancestors who were Irish beat cops and German deputies. They seemed to have survived ok.

      1. avatar John in AK says:

        The Numbers and Chance were in their favour, luckily for you. Most of our ancestors survived only because nobody bigger or meaner or less scrupulous took a particularly violent dislike to them personally or to the group to which they belonged, or because an animal missed the chance to nosh upon them, or because they were not under that particular tree or rock at the time when it fell, or because they were out of town when a certain interesting and colourful plague ran messily through the populace; Mine lived only because they outran the angry pitchfork-and-torch-bearing villagers.

    4. avatar The Brotherhood of Steel says:

      You can have all the WW1 tanks you want. I think that’d actually be pretty badass.

  24. avatar Scrubula says:

    The problem is multi leveled. Police exceptions from civilian law are the first. The second is judges signing off on any warrant that passes under their nose. The third is military surplus being sold to police agencies for pennies on the dollar.

    I weigh all of these equally. I have absolutely no problem with a cop having a patrol rifle, but when the station starts issuing full auto department of defense loaned rifles, that’s when the disconnect between military, police, and civilians becomes apparent.

    1. avatar John in AK says:

      Contrary to popular belief, there IS no ‘exception’ for police to law; It is a matter of perception, not the reality. Cops are regularly prosecuted, and convicted, for all kinds of things. What we may WANT to happen, given what we perceive to be the truth, is not necessarily what is right or legal. I give you the recent events in Missouri as a prime example: If one side gets what they want to match what they believe, or if the other side does, the options are: Killer Kop Gets What He Deserves, Killer Kop Gets Off Because Society’s Racist, Innocent Officer Railroaded Over Righteous Shooting, or Police Officer Exonerated in Justifiable Homicide Case. Choose one.

      Also contrary to popular belief, judges do NOT sign off on bogus warrants all of the time; I remember just how HARD it was to get a warrant, and just how much PC I had to provide to obtain one. Furthermore, if a judge signs off on a bad warrant, he’s going to hear about it from a higher authority, and will suffer for it more often than not. If you don’t believe ME, watch more TV–happens all of the time.

      I can’t argue much with the last bit, although if I were a small-town shurf, I’d want MY deppities to have an MRAP. And at least one M4 each. And an MLRS. And a MIRV. And some tactical nukes. Let ol’ Luke and Lemuel act up on Saturday night when we got one of THEM!

      1. avatar Indiana Tom says:

        Probably not in the budget for this year, which is why rural areas do not have much militarization as they cannot afford the equipment and upkeep. Besides, usually things in rural America tends to be rather quite. The party animals tend to be in the urban environment.

        1. avatar John in AK says:

          OK. If my county could afford the upkeep, I’d STILL want an MRAP. Even if Lemuel and Luke don’t act up, I hear they’re good for parades.

        2. avatar Jus Bill says:

          Yeah, but they’ll tear hell out of your roads.

        3. avatar John in AK says:

          What roads?

      2. avatar mad mike says:

        BS….cops aren’t prosecuted routinely….I have been a city manager in a number of cities and have watched DAs decline to prosecute when the cops did bad things that anyone else would have been tried on. I have seen cops conspire to commit crimes and get away with it. Cops aren’t special (neither are city managers) but they get away with a lot of crimes and they cover for each. Loom at the goons in SF orKing City or Rampart…. every one knew and no one said a thing.

        1. avatar John in AK says:

          So, by implication, I can infer that you were a crooked city manager?

          Colour me not surprised.

  25. avatar Out_Fang_Thief says:

    Who’s to blame for police militarization? Follow the link. Hint: A bunch of democrats, and one republican.

    http://www.nationaljournal.com/congress/how-congress-helped-create-ferguson-s-militarized-police-20140814

  26. avatar Evan in Dallas says:

    I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. When you give someone a hammer, more and more things start looking like nails that need to be smacked in. Yes, there are policies that allow for a swat raid every time they want to serve a search warrant, but if they didn’t have some of the gear they have they may not be so inclined to act the way they do. I see AR style rifles as okay, and surplus M4s and M16s if they remove the giggle switch. The trend is that most cops don’t train much, and giving someone a weapon that is harder to control(full auto) with poor training is just looking for problems. In fact, I know the equipment is deeply discounted, but funds going to better training even with less heavy combat style weapons would probably produce pretty darn good “enforcers” when they needed to be without the risk of them acting like they were in fallujah(spelling?) all the time.

  27. avatar Malcolm says:

    I think the obvious answer is Larry Phillips Jr and Emil Matasareanu, the two bank robbers who started what became known as the ‘North Hollywood Shootout’.

    For those who don’t remember, that was the occasion where two well armed bank robbers (with full auto AK’s and body armor) held off dozens of officers, injuring 18 officers and civilians, and showing the cops to be hopelessless underarmed compared with modern bad guys.

    For those who really want to see the cause of our militarized police departments, do a you tube search for ‘north hollywood shootout’ to watch the footage, and then consider what YOU would have done if you were the police needing to react to this new type of challange.

    1. avatar John in AK says:

      Obviously, a friendly-but-overweight elderly Irish or German beat cop could’ve handled it with his deadly billy-club and a .32 Colt New Police revolver with fixed sights and RNL ammunition. Maybe even with just manly fisticuffs.

      I think it was also the frock coats and tall hats. And the brass buttons. Yep, big brass buttons to stop the incoming rounds. THAT’s the ticket. Who needs an MRAP when you have big brass buttons?

      1. avatar Jus Bill says:

        Yup, he would have used his brain instead of his gun, and while the perps were busy shooting OVER THERE he would have come around behind them and put a bullet in the top of each of their spines.

        There is an upper IQ limit on police now, remember.

        1. avatar John in AK says:

          OK, big brass buttons and incredible stealth. I had NO idea that old-time cops were also Ninjas. Come to think of it, they DID wear big stars, too. Do you suppose that they could throw them accurately?

          Makes you wonder.

      2. avatar The Brotherhood of Steel says:

        Force wasn’t even necessary if you believe the liberals: Certainly he could’ve given those two misunderstood youths a stern talking too, and they simply would’ve put their guns down and surrendered. Boys will be boys after all.

        “Comment awaiting moderation”

        In what way does my comment need moderation? What are you CNN now?

        How about this..

        F U C K Y O U

      3. avatar CarlosT says:

        Give it a few months. In the same situation the cops will call in a strike with a JDAM.

    2. avatar mad mike says:

      A 30-30 or 308 was all that was needed for the north Hollywood bank robbery to put those guys down.

      1. avatar DJ says:

        You beat me to it, Mike. Deer rifle with a zeroed scope. 2 shots. Goodnight, Irene.

        1. avatar John in AK says:

          Nice idea, but the cops didn’t HAVE any rifles, or anything beyond .38 revolvers, 9mm Beretta 92s and some Ithaca 37s, for a good 18 minutes into the thing. The whole point in something like this is to have Something Good Now, and not Something Really Good Later. Later doesn’t help. If the two perps had AIMED instead of emulating Hollywood and shooting from the hip, the casualties would have been considerably higher, because there was no means of stopping them for 18 minutes.

          That’s a long time. 1100 rounds’ worth from the bad guys. Too long to have to wait for a rifle, I think.

        2. avatar DJ says:

          John, you seem like a decent guy who did his best trying to serve the public, so please don’t take this as aimed at you. This is more about debunking all the BS justification for why law enforcement HAS TO HAVE this or that.

          1) During North Hollywood LAPD were borrowing rifles from gunstores. I don’t know about you, but if I’m issued an unfamiliar weapon, the first thing I’m going to ask after I make sure it’s clear is “is this zeroed”? If it isn’t zeroed, I don’t want it – because it’s not going to hit anything except by luck.

          2) These guys were at less than 100m all the time. NO ONE misses the 100m target with a zeroed rifle and iron sights. I mean no one. The cooks can hit that. That girl in the S2 shop that only fired for “familiarization” and never qualified can hit that. MY WIFE (God help us all) can make a head shot at 100m. FFS, in the Army we shoot 50m targets with our protective mask (gas mask) on. Anyone who has shot in a pro mask can tell you about fogging, can’t see, blah, blah, but NO ONE misses the target!

          3) I don’t give a darn about body armor. 10 or 50 or 100 guys > 2 guys. Those Navy SEALS in Lone Survivor – they were engaged with 20-30 guys (not hundreds as depicted in the movie). If 30 Taliban with crummy weapons can defeat a few SEALS, the LAPD should have been able to overrun these bozos. It’s not like in the movies where 2 guys nobly hold off the barbarian horde, unless by “movies” you mean “Blackhawk Down” in which two amazing guys get killed by a mob.

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