Saturday, December 20, 2014

We The People Are Paying For Our Peril!

In America, we have seen a materialization  of cops meeting the military. Once upon a time, cops and the military had very different missions. It was widely held to conflate the two wasn't good for a free society. What we have seen happen over the last generation or so, beginning with the " War on Drugs,"  is the military selling weapons to police, including, tanks, armor-coated vehicles, helicopters, guns, and other heavy armaments.....even the old bayonet!  One of the first results of this practice was for police agencies across the country, big and small,  to form S.W.A.T like teams within the police force.

In fact, the number of S.W.A.T teams across the country has risen dramatically. It's this drastic rise that has Americans in every corner of the country in protest mode. Pencil in the NSA and America has a very serious problem. What's totally unfair and evil is " We The People" are paying for our peril with our hard earned tax dollars, .[Buy Source Below]


  • 1970's---Few Hundred
  • 1980's[Early]---3000
  • 2005---50,000

Source: Peter Kraska Easten Kentucky University

Before the Reagan " War on Drugs,"   most towns with 25K individuals who had S.W.A.T teams was about 15% but today that has risen to well over 80%.  What we see now is a domino effect from the 'Military Industrial Complex.' For example, we see Drones being used by police now. This development is problematic. America does not need a militarized police force! The recent events all over the country exhibiting police overkill have enlightened many Americans and motivated them to the point of national protests.

The Root of the Problem?  Under the Justice Department's COPS (Community Oriented Policing Services) program, 629 of the 800 police jobs funded for the next three years – all the newly hired officers – must go to veterans who served at least 180 days' active duty since 9/11. This is the first time the 18-year-old COPS program has required cities and counties seeking grants to hire veterans exclusively.[See SourceWhy is this a problem one might ask?  Thousands of Vets are getting ' less than honorable' discharges because they have (PTSD). How many of our Vets turned Cop suffer from this disorder in some capacity that, for a variety of reasons have slipped through the cracks?[See Article]

What is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?[PTSD]

According to a CNN report, the suicide rate among Veterans could be as high as 22 a day. That equates to a suicide every 65 minutes. The point here is that Veterans of wars have known mental issues. How many of these psychological issues have been masked by Vets looking for work in the civilian workplace? How many of these former soldiers turned cop have gone undiagnosed?  What has come to reality is that America has loose cannons running around in a uniform with a gun and, based on the history of police related shootings and the conviction rate thereof, a ' licence to kill' unarmed American citizens with no recompense. This civil injustice has caused millions of Americans to become larrikin, which in turn creates trigger happy police who shoot first and ask questions later.

This Is Not A War, It's a 12 year old kid!!

Earlier this year, the House of Public Discourse also found evidence of our nation's military brainwashing and encouraging our impressionable young soldiers to become " Holy Warriors."  Killing in the name of God was posh in the Dark Ages; are we returning to the Dark Ages in America? Is there a crusade against certain segments of our society?  If these questions seem far-fetched, why are our nation's police forces buying military gear at record levels at the expense of the tax- payer?


There are lots of things going on here concerning the militarization of America's police forces. What we don't know is important. What's even more important is why we don't know it. This ambiguity is one reason, in the House view, the Ferguson community reacted in the way they did. For instance, the Ferguson Police Dept. has had cameras their officers could wear. Their cruisers have dash cameras installed. For whatever reason, they decided not to use them. Why? If they did use these devices as they were intended, we would know what transpired on that day Darren Wilson shot an unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown dead. We would know a lot more as to who was at fault. In fact, these devices could have justified the action of officer Wilson. In reality, what we got was a grand jury process run amuck.[See Article]

Is America In A State Of Emergency?

What has added fuel to the fire is how America's 

police forces have reacted towards this civil-

disobedience. For example, who can forget the 

nonchalant press conference held by St. Louis County 

Police Chief Jon Belmar.  

In retrospect, there was a peaceful protest shortly after this news conference. Police met this protest with a substantial resistance, including snipers who had guns pointed at unarmed peaceful protesters. This show of force by the Ferguson Police Dept set the stage for this entire travesty of justice. When you show up at a protest expecting violence you, in fact, are self-fulfilling a narrative of seeing the protesters as the enemy.  All the protesters were doing was exercising their rights provided by the U.S. Constitution. When the protesters look at police and see this posture of Robo-cop, the people see these cops not as a protector of the community but the centerpiece of the very institution they are protesting. When you immediately respond in such a manner what you are telling the protesters is you don't have the right to public expression, and we are here to curtail this expression.  

We The People Must Demand Transparency and Accountability from Law-Enforcement. 

One of the significant problems our research found was the demographics of the Ferguson Police Dept, which was a far cry from the demographics of the Ferguson community, and this is prevalent all over the country.  It is critical that the community see itself in the police force they are funding with their tax dollars. Our study into this situation has shown that communities need to see the cops as representations of their ranks; not some ex-military person from who knows where, hired because of some government program to show favoritism over a non-military local applicant from the community. It's imperative that the community sees that the local law-enforcement has a stake in the commonwealth of all the people of the city, town, or nation it is tasked to serve and protect. When a community doesn't see itself reflected in the police force, like in Ferguson, they see these individuals as outsiders imposed upon them. By the same token, when the police officer does not identify with the people from his/her area, it's harder for him to feel a part of that community.

   What human psychology  suggests  is when this situation is self-evident,  people are less likely to see each other as neighbors and more as threats. 

One of the major side-effects of this societal condition is a lack of corporation between citizens and law-enforcement. This situation is dangerous because there is this attitude that if you talk to police you will be labeled a snitch. What is troubling  is that this goes to violent crimes as well as non-violent ones. What is so profound about the fiasco in Ferguson,MO  is that,  not since the killing of students at Kent State University in the 70's,  has the American public witnessed a police show of force that mirrored a military type endeavor on the streets of Baghdad,  by supposedly civic- minded policeman. Throughout our nation's history as a ' rule of thumb,' we have been adverse to using our military for domestic law enforcement. 

The business of being a soldier is very different than that of a street cop. What concerns this writer is the fact our military trains soldiers to become killers. What has become evident by the escalating questionable police shootings in America  is that we are putting trained killers on our streets with psychological issues like PTSD, to oversee communities that many do not identify with or relate to, and in some cases loath. A police officer in America is supposed to be a civic-minded civil servant. In fairness, the United States Military has for the longest time held the position of staying out of civil law enforcement and does not want to be involved for the most part. However, this has not stopped them from selling outdated and overstocked military equipment to state and local police agencies. Where the problem festers is with civil law enforcement who have a strong desire to become more like an army. No matter if a cop is an ex-military or a civilian recruit,  when we supply them with war-like equipment, train them in military tactics and tell them they are in some war, it begs the question: what type of mindset are we cultivating?

Our founding fathers were extremely aware of having the military enforce civil law. They got a high dose of it from the British and was one of the main reasons for the American Revolution. This tension came to a head in the Boston Massacre, which ultimately led to the American Rebellion. There are some bottom lines here. Soldiers are trained to kill people,  not protect them. By having individuals with this indoctrination and training now in civilian policing,  what you have is a time bomb and what we see in the here and now is an explosion. What must not get lost is that these killings by cops have become an everyday event, with very few reaching the national media attention as did the Ferguson and New York cases.

In closing, our advocacy here at the House of Public Discourse contends we must reverse these trends we see playing out in our news feeds on a day to day basis. How many more of these police shootings will be tolerated by the American people before the country erupts from civil discourse to civil unrest?  How many more unarmed suspects have to die before we return to some sanity in America where we demand justice for all with a sense of fairness for the everyday citizen? The fact is "We The People" need to take back our government from the corporations who have our elected officials in their hip-pocket. The cops are employees of the people. Our taxes pay for their salaries, equipment, pensions, and in most cases,  health care. I for one,  am sick and tired of my tax dollars going to fund this abhorrent and racist behavior by federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies. America is in a backward free fall across the board regarding civil rights. America has regressed into a corporation owned fascist government with an attempt to dumb-down this nation by cutting funding for education and having a military police force on stand-by when we as people try to express our rights and express our dissatisfaction through constitutionally protected public discourse. What should make us all emboldened to take action is how "We The People Are Paying For Our Peril!

President Obama Has Taken Some Positive Steps.

Source of Article: Rise of the Warrior Cop by Radley Balko

No comments:

Post a Comment