Our police forces have become dangerously militarized. We need cops, not soldiers on the streets of America. In fact it is pretty much against the American tradition to have what are essentially soldiers on patrol in our country. Most cities don’t need Bradley Fighting Vehicles. But they are getting them. Most cities don’t need SWAT teams, but they are expanding them.
Much of this militarization has come from an influx of federal money aimed at fighting “terrorism.” But Iowa City Iowa doesn’t have much of a terrorism issue. Nor does 98% of the United States. But the cops in places outside of New York, DC, Chicago, LA, and San Francisco want their piece of the pie. And they’ve gotten it – to the overall detriment of civil society in the United States.
What’s at least equally as bad as local cops going all Rambo is that many federal agencies now have SWAT teams. The Consumer Product Safety Commission and the Department of Education now have SWAT teams. Why in the world do these agencies have their own mini-armies? These aren’t police forces or security detail. These are deployable fighting forces.
(From The National Review)
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.