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Militarization of the police?

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J.J

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Sheep Dog AT said:
LA should have APC's, so should any major municipality.  No argument there.

How about Moncton, NB? Maythorpe, AB? Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal?
 

Scoobie Newbie

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Yes to all except Maythorpe and only because I don't know enough about the place.
I'd add Wpg, Edm, Calgary, Quebec City, Fredericton, Saskatoon, Regina to name a very few.
 

Humphrey Bogart

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WR said:
http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-lapd-pursuit-suspect-identified-20140819-story.html
An  excerpt from the article;
The department's SWAT team used one of its two BearCat armored vehicles, a $150,000 rescue vehicle bought in 2003, to shield them as they approached Jones.

Smith said Jones peppered the BearCat with bullets, striking the SWAT officer, before he was killed by return fire, Smith said.

"Thank goodness we had that armored vehicle as a shield because a regular police cruiser would have been Swiss cheese," Smith said.quote]

I am a LEO, so I have intimidate knowledge of what the capabilities of the bad guys are.

I'm sorry RoyalDrew if you think gun violence in the US is sensationalist, but I live across from Detroit, I have work commitments there where I'm there weekly. In the last 6 months for work I've been in Atlanta, NYC, DC, Miami, Buffalo, Columbus, Cincinnati etc. Its not the big bad police making stories up, these are dangerous cities where the bad guys possess automatic weapons, armour piercing RDS, grenades etc.

Gun Violence happens no doubt about it but the scale and depth of the problem is greatly exaggerated.  I deployed to Jamaica for close to six months in 2012 and spent almost every weekend and some weeks for work in Kingston.  I made regular stops in Spanish Town, Downtown Kingston, went to the clubs in New Kingston, not once did I ever feel unsafe.  If your unaware, Kingston is one of the most violent cities in the Western Hemisphere with an average of 1 murder every 6 hours.  95% of Murders go unsolved.  Statistically speaking, it is a very dangerous city but in reality the danger is confined to certain parts and gangs leave the average joe alone. 

When we would deploy down to Spanish Town or West Kingston for exercises we would have close protection with us, you know what it was?  Three or Four Jamaica Defence Force NCO's with M16's slung on their shoulders just to show that we were there and armed.  We didn't need MRAP's or fancy *** crap in a country where the weapon of choice for gang bangers is the AK47 and gang bangers all have heavy weaponry.  In fact the locals are very very friendly and helpful to the Jamaica Defence Force because they act in a professional manner and treat the population with respect when conducting internal security operations, unlike the Jamaica Constabulary Force who are known for being heavy handed and whom the local population despise.

I think your job as a LEO is actually making you have bias in this instance.  The article you cited is a worst case scenario and not indicative of every day events, again two guys in a country of 318,000,000 people decide they want to go on a shooting rampage and you cite that as being indicative of a massive problem with gun violence.  You're only proving my point with your response. 

I have a massive amount of respect for what police officers do and what they have to deal with on a daily basis but their is no justification for some of the things they are doing now.  The overuse and proliferation of tactical teams, the idea that cost of an operation is more important than preservation of human life (WHICH IS A CONSIDERATION WHEN THEY DECIDE TO SEND IN THE SWAT TEAM), etc, etc, etc...

You signed up to be a cop and we understand it's a dangerous job but that doesn't give you carte blanche. 


Edit:


Too add, cops are much like soldiers, we always think we need more resources to do the job at hand and we think the government is never giving us enough.  We also always think our individual situation is worse than anyone elses.  It's the #1 reason why we aren't allowed to make any REAL decisions or police ourselves.  We are almost always incapable of objective self-reflection.
 

a_majoor

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It's not just the police who are being militarized, many US federal bureaucracies are also becoming militarized, as the article below highlights. At least some members of the Congress have woken up to the problem, and are starting to work towards some demilitarization:

http://overlawyered.com/2014/08/demilitarize-regulatory-agencies/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=demilitarize-regulatory-agencies

Let’s demilitarize the regulatory agencies too
by WALTER OLSON on AUGUST 18, 2014

One consequence of the events in Ferguson, Mo. is that people are talking with each other across ideological lines who usually don’t, a symbol being the attention paid on both left and right to Sen. Rand Paul’s op-ed last week in Time. And one point worth discussing is how the problem of police militarization manifests itself similarly these days in local policing and in the enforcement of federal regulation.

At BuzzFeed, Evan McMorris-Santoro generously quotes me on the prospects for finding common ground on these issues. The feds’ Gibson Guitar raid — our coverage of that here — did much to raise the profile of regulatory SWAT tactics, and John Fund cited others in an April report:

Many of the raids [federal paramilitary enforcers] conduct are against harmless, often innocent, Americans who typically are accused of non-violent civil or administrative violations.

Take the case of Kenneth Wright of Stockton, Calif., who was “visited” by a SWAT team from the U.S. Department of Education in June 2011. Agents battered down the door of his home at 6 a.m., dragged him outside in his boxer shorts, and handcuffed him as they put his three children (ages 3, 7, and 11) in a police car for two hours while they searched his home. The raid was allegedly intended to uncover information on Wright’s estranged wife, Michelle, who hadn’t been living with him and was suspected of college financial-aid fraud.

The year before the raid on Wright, a SWAT team from the Food and Drug Administration raided the farm of Dan Allgyer of Lancaster, Pa. His crime was shipping unpasteurized milk across state lines to a cooperative of young women with children in Washington, D.C., called Grass Fed on the Hill. Raw milk can be sold in Pennsylvania, but it is illegal to transport it across state lines. The raid forced Allgyer to close down his business.

Fund goes on to discuss the rise of homeland-security and military-surplus programs that have contributed to the rapid proliferation of SWAT and paramilitary methods in local policing. He cites Radley Balko’s Rise of the Warrior Cop, which similarly treats both manifestations of paramilitary policing as part of the same trend.

As McMorris-Santoro notes in the BuzzFeed piece, Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Utah) has introduced a bill called the Regulatory Agency Demilitarization Act, citing such unsettling developments as a U.S. Department of Agriculture solicitation for submachine guns. 28 House Republicans have joined as sponsors, according to Ryan Lovelace at National Review.

There has already been left-right cooperation on the issue, as witness the unsuccessful Grayson-Amash amendment in June seeking to cut off the military-surplus 1033 program. As both sides come to appreciate some of the common interests at stake in keeping law enforcement as peaceful and proportionate as situations allow, there will be room for more such cooperation. (& welcome Instapundit readers; cross-posted at Cato at Liberty)

Looking at the narratives, most of these situations could have been handled by a friendly visit from the Sherriff's department, or in the case of the fraud investigation, a detective or investigator. The entire purpose of SWAT, ERT or whatever name they are given is to deal with unusual emergency situations, not day to day poise activities. And the purpose of bureaucracies is to deal with paperwork and regulations, not attack taxpayers with submachine guns and armoured vehicles.
 

Humphrey Bogart

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Thucydides said:
It's not just the police who are being militarized, many US federal bureaucracies are also becoming militarized, as the article below highlights. At least some members of the Congress have woken up to the problem, and are starting to work towards some demilitarization:

http://overlawyered.com/2014/08/demilitarize-regulatory-agencies/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=demilitarize-regulatory-agencies

Looking at the narratives, most of these situations could have been handled by a friendly visit from the Sherriff's department, or in the case of the fraud investigation, a detective or investigator. The entire purpose of SWAT, ERT or whatever name they are given is to deal with unusual emergency situations, not day to day poise activities. And the purpose of bureaucracies is to deal with paperwork and regulations, not attack taxpayers with submachine guns and armoured vehicles.

Great Post, it's a perpetuating self-licking ice cream cone that is being fed to us through the use of media and effective lobbying.  I am hopeful that we are soon reaching the tipping point.
 

Scoobie Newbie

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Most recent I think was Home Land launch a raid on a couple who imported a vehicle that didn't meet emission standards.
 

Bruce Monkhouse

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If any of it is even remotely true.................nice thing when one side probably legally can't comment. 
Every inmate I escort to a public hospital is more than happy to tell the nurses/doctors/ etc that he's in for drunk driving.  Meanwhile on the CPIC in my pocket is his list of child molestation offences and all I can do is sit there and listen.
 

Fishbone Jones

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Sheep Dog AT said:
LA should have APC's, so should any major municipality.  No argument there.

Windsor, ON has one. Cougar IIRC. Wouldn't give us the pumpkin launcher though, even though there's plenty of us here that are qualified to use it ;D
 

Scoobie Newbie

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http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/aug/1/feds-raid-nc-home-to-seize-land-rover-in-epa-emiss/
http://www.wbtv.com/story/26075071/woman-has-questions-after-agents-seize-land-rovers
 

Bruce Monkhouse

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Umm,....WTF was that??  Do you know this woman??  is she reputable??    Is she a drug importer?? 

Oh,...you can't answer even ONE of those questions.  Well I guess you did read it on the internet so it must be true.............
 

OldSolduer

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To a small extent the police are militarized already. The RCMP has its own Depot, and most major police forces have their own academy.

As for being armed with armoured vehicles and automatic weapons, it makes sense but are only required in the most dire of situations.
 

Humphrey Bogart

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Sheep Dog AT said:
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/aug/1/feds-raid-nc-home-to-seize-land-rover-in-epa-emiss/
http://www.wbtv.com/story/26075071/woman-has-questions-after-agents-seize-land-rovers

It's these sort of incidents that are causing people to lose faith in law enforcement.  Again, I don't blame LEO's themselves, rather I blame the bureaucracy and the politicization of law-enforcement.  The government needs to reign this problem in.  You lose credibility with the population you are supposed to serve, you won't have a foot to stand on.
 

OldSolduer

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RoyalDrew said:
It's these sort of incidents that are causing people to lose faith in law enforcement.  Again, I don't blame LEO's themselves, rather I blame the bureaucracy and the politicization of law-enforcement.  The government needs to reign this problem in.  You lose credibility with the population you are supposed to serve, you won't have a foot to stand on.

A good assessment IMO. High River, Alberta will likely not trust the RCMP for a bit after the shenanigans they pulled last year during the Calagary flood.

 

Bruce Monkhouse

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RoyalDrew said:
It's these sort of incidents that are causing people to lose faith in law enforcement.  Again, I don't blame LEO's themselves, rather I blame the bureaucracy and the politicization of law-enforcement.  The government needs to reign this problem in.  You lose credibility with the population you are supposed to serve, you won't have a foot to stand on.

Wait,...the vehicle is illegal to import but she did anyways??  ....and enforcing that law is somehow wrong to you?? 
 

Scoobie Newbie

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You don't call out SWAT type pers to take a vehicle unless you need to.  They would have done their research.  Wake the fuck up Bruce.
 

Humphrey Bogart

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Bruce Monkhouse said:
Umm,....WTF was that??  Do you know this woman??  is she reputable??    Is she a drug importer?? 

Oh,...you can't answer even ONE of those questions.  Well I guess you did read it on the internet so it must be true.............

Ever heard of Journalistic Impropriety?  We get it Bruce, your involved in LE and we know which side of the fence you're on but at least try and look like you are being a little bit objective.

Jim Seggie said:
To a small extent the police are militarized already. The RCMP has its own Depot, and most major police forces have their own academy.

As for being armed with armoured vehicles and automatic weapons, it makes sense but are only required in the most dire of situations.

I agree Jim, Police do need special tools in the tool box when "Shit Hits the Fan" but the use of these tools should only be used in the most extreme of circumstances.  Unfortunately, too often this doesn't seem to be the case.  Also, does every force actually require these tools or should they be held in special hands, this is why we have different levels of policing i.e. municipal, provincial and national.

To give you an example:

If New Glasgow Police requires an ERT or the use of an armoured vehicle, they can call in the RCMP.  No need for a small town force to have that capability but of course they wouldn't want the RCMP to come in and step on their trunks as that might hurt someones ego.

 

OldSolduer

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Bruce Monkhouse said:
Wait,...the vehicle is illegal to import but she did anyways??  ....and enforcing that law is somehow wrong to you??

I don't think its a matter of enforcing the law. I think its the over the top use of tactical teams etc that irk people.
 

Humphrey Bogart

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Sheep Dog AT said:
You don't call out SWAT type pers to take a vehicle unless you need to.  They would have done their research.  Wake the frig up Bruce.

LOL!!  QFTT

This isn't about enforcing laws Bruce, this is about appropriate use of force. 
 

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:Tin-Foil-Hat: I tell ya, it's Obama's fault. He's turning Homeland Security into a para military organization. So he can use them when he becomes dictator. Blame it all on Obama. :Tin-Foil-Hat:





 
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