factors, intimidation; show of force-use of force....
The last post has merit but many citizens in the general public need to understand the reasons or factors behind why sworn LE officers dress or carry the weapons-equipment that they do.
It's complex & would take a long, detailed post on the forum but in short, sworn LE officers want to deal with threats or de-escalate events(calls for service) in the safest, fastest way possible.
Sworn LE also has a show of force incident much, much more than a use of force event.
LE officers are trained to enforce the law and are sworn to make arrests or protect the general public. They must select the weapons or equipment that will expedite that w/o risk to them, the subject(s), or bystanders/citizens nearby.
There is merit in intimidation(camo uniforms, facemasks, laser aimers, white/strobe lights, etc but that is more in-depth & meant for sworn LE officers/first responders.
I strongly disagree with a few gun writers or homeland security authorities who say sworn LE officers do not need military type patrol rifles or high-tech weapons. These first responders may need to deal with threats in remote areas or need to face high-stress, difficult use-of-force incidents.
The recent FBI/HRT op in rural AL with the armed subject holding a small child hostage is a good example.
When the FBI first started the elite HRT(described in the non fiction books; No Heroes & Cold Zero) they made the unit motto; "To Save Lives".
This is what US law enforcement & first responders must do.