I believe in law & order.
I really do.
I don’t like being pulled over for speeding; nor do I prefer to receive a citation for failing to use my blinker.
As much as I don’t like those things, I believe that it is necessary to maintain civil order using civilian police forces.
Maybe that is why I feel concerned about the direction of America’s modern police forces.
I have friends in SWAT forces, friends in DEA undercover ops, and (probably the most “front-line” of them all) I have family members that work for the Chicago PD–if there is a war going on in America, the streets of Chicago are probably as front-line as anywhere!
…where is the appropriate balance?
Is it necessary for urban police departments to militarize?
Probably. The bad guys are carrying some heavy duty weapons that make yesteryear’s standard issue revolvers look like pea-shooters.
Is it necessary for suburban police departments to militarize?
Hmmm…if other suburban metro areas are similar to Detroit’s, where violence spills over and populations are migrating away from a rotted urban core, then maybe.
Is it necessary for the U.S. Department of Education to militarize?
Did you even know that the Department of Ed has an enforcement division, let alone a SWAT team?!?
The DoE is deflecting attention away from some troubling incidents, and saying that ‘actions’ take place through the Office of the Inspector General, which is the “law enforcement wing” of the DoE.
That still doesn’t explain why THE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION NEEDS A S.W.A.T. TEAM!
In the 1930s, Germany’s police forces were transformed from civilian law enforcement units into paramilitary units.
These police battalions were used to maintain “law and order” in territories that had been seized by the Nazis. The German army was able to use its blitzkrieg method of rapid advancement of professional military forces to advance swiftly through eastern Europe. After Polish territory was taken, the police force (now militarized) took actions against civilian populations that no typical police force would take.
|(To read more about Germany’s militarized police force, read Christopher Browning’s Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland.)|
Will this be the direction that America takes?
I don’t necessarily mean the killing of six million people of a particular ethnic background.
What I am concerned about is possibility that police departments throughout the United States will become nameless-faceless “forces” that treat the average American as a military target, not as an honored citizen with constitutional rights.
For more on this subject, the Wall Street Journal has recently published an article concerning the “Rise of the Warrior Cop.”
Alex Jones’ Infowars also discusses the topic in a publication titled “Florida Nurse Terrorized by US Marshals.”
Is this where we want to go?
Is the momentum even stoppable?
I don’t know, but I hope that we can find the balance between law and order and personal liberty.
In a related article, the Associated Press explains the mechanisms for obtaining military surplus gear for use on American streets, in particular, small towns.
Here is a quote from the article:
“The harm for me is that it further militarizes American law enforcement,” Stamper said. “We make a serious mistake, I’m convinced, in equipping domestic law enforcement, particularly in smaller, rural communities, with this much military equipment.”