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Old August 15, 2014, 10:02 AM   #26
Madcap_Magician
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mainah
Excellent points, and thanks. But how do woods/jungle camo, or just plain black uniforms enhance officer safety? What is the point of that, beyond just intimidation? And to the point that this forum requires, why are "assault weapons" needed in response to bricks and rocks? If things can escalate so quickly that the police need those weapons, then why can't I have access to them too?
I guess I don't see what's intimidating about black uniforms. Or blue uniforms. Or woodland pattern camouflage, or ACU pattern, uh, "camouflage." If I had to guess, those colors are chosen because those are the colors that you can buy BDUs in from your local police uniform supply company? Cops wear utility uniforms for riot work because dress uniforms would get messed up.

As to the next point, I wonder why it is that these guns are "assault weapons and military-style weapons" when carried by the police, but "modern sporting rifles" at the store. So these rifles are "Only cosmetically different from hunting rifles" when Joe Wal-Mart owns one, but if Joe Police Officer has one, it's because the police are becoming the military? I thought the 2A supporters were big on "assault is a behavior" and "cosmetic features don't make guns more dangerous." There are enough actual concerns about police procedure that it seems foolish to get caught up in hypocritical discussions about police equipment.

There are some short-barrel and select-fire patrol rifles out there, but at a guess most of them are semiautomatic 16" carbines of the same sort you can buy at a well-stocked Wal-Mart. Select fire is kind of a chrome-plated football bat in law enforcement- kind of cool, not used because there's no conceivable need for it, and those agencies that have it, have it mostly because that's the way their guns came.

As to the bricks and rocks thing, I understand a lot of people don't think it's necessary to respond to them with rifles.

Coincidentally, that appears to be the opinion of law enforcement as well, since the rifles were not used.

Yes, "things can escalate that quickly." Yes, you can own those same weapons and equipment. For most of the rifles, all that is required is that you be 18 and that you can pass an NCIC check. For an NFA item, you have a more detailed background check, tax stamp, and delay. For the armor and uniforms, no age or background requirement, just go buy them (in many cases from the same suppliers from which the police buy them). For the armored vehicles, you can own a tank if you have the money.

Is it wrong for police to deliberately shoot tear gas at a news camera crew that isn't doing anything criminal or disorderly? Yes.

Is it wrong for police to arrest journalists who are not doing anything criminal or disorderly? Yes.

Do either of these things have anything to do with patrol rifles, the color of your uniform, or whether or not your police department has an armored vehicle? No.
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Old August 15, 2014, 10:14 AM   #27
iraiam
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I think this could have an effect on gun control, I have been saying for a couple decades that all gun control does is create a government/police that is armed in a far superior fashion than the citizenry that it derives it's authority from, In America's case I believe gun control is specifically done for that reason.

In virtually EVERY instance, government/police are exempted from any such weapon restriction placed on the people. What did we think was going to happen? The same thing that always happens when people with no/few guns stand up to people with many guns and other military grade hardware.

This thing in Ferguson with a militarized police force, just adds to my distrust of government/police, All of them!
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Old August 15, 2014, 10:20 AM   #28
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It is interesting that the "mainstream media" is reporting on "the militarization of the police" openly.

Here is a link to such an article - http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debat...police-forces/ - the article says it was originally from last October but has been updated by the authors. It mentions the Ferguson incident explicitly.

Without quoting enough to violate copyright, here is a snippet:

"There is a growing bipartisan public outrage about the local police force’s fiercely militarized response to protestors in Ferguson, Missouri.

From Democrats to Republicans, progressive to libertarian, citizens across the political spectrum are denouncing the efforts to stop demonstrations over the police killing of Michael Brown, an unarmed, African-American teenager.

Legislators are also speaking out against this militarization of police. Representative Justin Amash (R-Mich.) described the situation as “frightening.” Senator Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) a moderate, called the police tactics “the problem instead of the solution.” Meanwhile, libertarian Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) stated flatly in an op-ed, “We must de-militarize the police.” "

I apologize for cringing at the oxymoron "AR-15 assault rifle" used later in the article, which seems more concerned with MRAPs and helicopters.

The linked article does seem to have been written in a hysterical, anti-weapons tone, but nevertheless it is interesting that an issue that has been topical on this Forum is also in the "news".
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Old August 15, 2014, 10:43 AM   #29
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When the facts come out about the shooting, I expect 'de-militarization' of the police to be the only issue remaining on the demagoguery side of the table.
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Old August 15, 2014, 11:14 AM   #30
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Now I wasn't there, I don't know the Dept. Policy of Ferguson PD, but I do know, on the dept. I worked for, after taking a whooping from a robbery suspect, deadly force would have been authorized to apprehend the suspect, even if he was un-armed.
But I hope you weren't authorized to execute that unarmed suspect after he surrendered. That's what is being alleged here. The story is still evolving.
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Old August 15, 2014, 11:49 AM   #31
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The media, politicians, and the public need to relax and wait for the facts to come out. Too much rush for judgement.
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Old August 15, 2014, 12:10 PM   #32
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I have close family living in Ferguson. I can tell you with great certainty that many Ferguson residents are very grateful that the police responded to the riot in an aggressive way. The looting, burning, vandalism, and chaos was contained to a small area near the intersection of West Florissant and Ferguson Avenue. It did not spread to the other neighborhoods, thanks to the firm police response. If anything, there was criticism (locally) that LE did not respond quick enough as the riot developed that first night.

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Old August 15, 2014, 12:31 PM   #33
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I can tell you with great certainty that many Ferguson residents are very grateful that the police responded to the riot in an aggressive way...If anything, there was criticism (locally) that LE did not respond quick enough as the riot developed that first night.
Thus the quandary that police find themselves in. If they’re not assertive enough some folks take advantage of the situation, but if they’re too aggressive they deny innocent people their freedoms. That’s why we need to focus less on the hardware/tactics and more on oversight/accountability. Sometimes an armored vehicle is appropriate other times simple listening skills are needed. I believe we make a mistake by not providing law enforcement with both.
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Old August 15, 2014, 12:33 PM   #34
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Quote:
I'm asking if images of police using military equipment and tactics
Well I can see Madcap_Magician started us down this road, and I'm glad.

Why does everyone accept the quoted premise?

For every militiarization comparison one could come up with for this picture, I'd bet I can come up with a fireman-ization.


It's not the gear they use. Otherwise wouldn't we be talking about the militarization of the TV news for the Traffic Copter.
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Old August 15, 2014, 02:11 PM   #35
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Just posted on Facebook: Police finally released the name of the officer involved in the shooting in Ferguson. The department has 53 officers; 50 white and 3 black. It was one of the black officers who shot Brown!
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Old August 15, 2014, 02:36 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by JimDandy
Well I can see Madcap_Magician started us down this road, and I'm glad.
I'll probably regret it. These threads are almost constant these days, and everyone (including me) always says the same things.
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Old August 15, 2014, 02:43 PM   #37
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The following was posted at http://www.ibtimes.com/not-darren-wi...-brown-1659706

They are saying that there are two officers with the same name, one black and one white, who work for different departments, and the one who shot the fellow in Ferguson is not the black one.

""Greetings community members of St. Louis, MO and all those across the nation. The Ethical Society of Police has been closely following the events surrounding the unfortunate police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO. As a result of public outcry and a demand for justice, the Ferguson police officer's name was released and happens to be, Darren Wilson. The first thing we would like to assure the world is that this is a horrific coincidence. May I assure the world that this is not the President of the Ethical Society of Police's Sergeant Darren R. Wilson who is African-American, and happens to be an 18 year veteran of the St. Louis Police Department. I'm sure additional clarification statements will be released immediately. Thank you for your continued support.""

Time to wait for more information.
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Old August 15, 2014, 08:06 PM   #38
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Firemen show up in a red vehicle and in red and or yellow uniforms as a means of being easier to see in traffic and project a sense of urgency. So what's the point of non-urban camo (in an urban environment) or black vehicles and uniforms? It seems to me that the point is intimidation. And IMHO the whole point of being an American is to not be intimated by authority.

The liberal media is what it is. But my question remains how can they continue to tell us what weapons are too dangerous for us to own and then claim that we can't trust the same weapons in the hands of police that they tell us can't be trusted? Is this a wedge?
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Old August 15, 2014, 08:09 PM   #39
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After I heard someone on CNN screaming about how cops don't need AK47s and armor over and over and over I turned it off. Sadly its not about finding the truth of someones death. Its now everyone pushing their agendas using him as the excuse.
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Old August 15, 2014, 09:31 PM   #40
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Quote:
It is interesting that the "mainstream media" is reporting on "the militarization of the police" openly.
That's funny ..... it wasn't too many years ago I was lumped in with "militia member nuts/lunatic fringe" when I complained that the police in many places in this country, with the stated mission to "serve and protect" the public were dressing and arming themselves like mechanized infantrymen ..... who generally have a completely different mission ...... IIRC, that was something about "closing with and killig or capturing the enemy, by fire and manuever" ...... If a police force ever begins to see the public as the enemy, then they have lost the battle already ...... adopting the trappings of the soldier makes it easier to lose sight of their purpose for being Policemen ......

Soldiers are in the business of killing people and breaking stuff. Policemen are not.
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Old August 15, 2014, 10:28 PM   #41
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Give it a little time, the 'militarization of the police' agenda will fail, there is no way to go back in time.

However, we can expect a lot of rhetoric about 'weapons of war' and 'militarization of the populace', instead, as part of the general anti-gun diatribe. They may get some traction with that, given the recent inculcation of the concept with the general public, just a way to turn things towards a softer target.
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Old August 16, 2014, 10:13 AM   #42
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"I guess I don't see what's intimidating about black uniforms"
Oh, just that pretty much every abusive enforcement authority in history has eventually adopted black. It's a very psychological decision rooted in making yourself indiscernible by letting your features blend together; makes you a tougher opponent or individual to size up and categorize mentally. Solid contrasting colors also appear larger against a lighter background; the exact opposite of zebra stripes. Combine it with matching eye and headgear, and you are basically facing a pudgy-looking version of The Black Knight

Do a Google search on various nations' Secret Police and you'll find something in common...

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Old August 16, 2014, 10:29 AM   #43
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Looks like there was some additional violence in the early morning hours, perhaps fueled by alcohol and the chance to loot. One sentence worth noting in a local news report:
Quote:
A handful of owners stood guard this morning at their businesses, doing their best to discourage any more looting or violence.
http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/c...8fbe252b4.html
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Old August 16, 2014, 10:58 AM   #44
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It would not be the place to argue about free speech or the right to assemble. You can argue that later with an attorney in a court room.
It’s the mind set of the above quote that is the problem, in my opinion. I see that statement, all too often on this forum. Why is it that when someone exercises their constitutional rights, they should have to “lawyer up” and go bankrupt in the process? Some of us live paycheck to paycheck, through no fault of our own. We can’t afford to “lawyer up” each and every time our constitutional rights get trampled upon, nor should we have to. Our rights should come naturally. I should be able to argue my rights of free speech and assembly any time and any where. I should be able to argue the entire constitution any time and any where, right? I have the right to peaceably protest last time I checked.

But we tuck tail and do what ever our masters in the government tell us to do. Even if we are clearly in the right. So the government sees us tuck tail, and knows they got away with something. So the next time, the government gets a bit bolder. We gave them that first inch years ago, and now they are up to taking miles.
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Old August 16, 2014, 11:27 AM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike38
Quote:
It would not be the place to argue about free speech or the right to assemble. You can argue that later with an attorney in a court room.
It’s the mind set of the above quote that is the problem, in my opinion. I see that statement, all too often on this forum. Why is it that when someone exercises their constitutional rights, they should have to “lawyer up” and go bankrupt in the process? Some of us live paycheck to paycheck, through no fault of our own. We can’t afford to “lawyer up” each and every time our constitutional rights get trampled upon, nor should we have to. Our rights should come naturally....
Except the Constitution (in fact no law) is self-executing.

What the Constitution, our laws, and our system give us are resource and remedies. We can associated with others who think as we do and exercise what political power that association gives us to influence legislation. We have the opportunity to try to join with enough other people we can elect legislators and other public officials who we consider more attuned to our interests. And we can seek redress in court.

We live in a pluralistic, political society, and not everyone thinks as you do. People have varying beliefs, values, needs, wants and fears. People have differing views on the proper role government.

So while you may be pursue the tools the Constitution, our laws and our system give you to promote your vision of how things should be, others will be using those same tools to promote their visions. Their can be no guarantee that your particular vision will prevail.
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Old August 16, 2014, 12:39 PM   #46
JimDandy
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Firemen show up in a red vehicle and in red and or yellow uniforms as a means of being easier to see in traffic and project a sense of urgency.
And the military doesn't ride around hanging onto the OUTSIDE of armored vehicles with plastic fireman's helmet visors. They also don't spend a lot of time on rubber bullets, flexi-cuffs or tasers.
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Old August 16, 2014, 01:58 PM   #47
Madcap_Magician
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Originally Posted by barnbwt
Oh, just that pretty much every abusive enforcement authority in history has eventually adopted black. It's a very psychological decision rooted in making yourself indiscernible by letting your features blend together; makes you a tougher opponent or individual to size up and categorize mentally. Solid contrasting colors also appear larger against a lighter background; the exact opposite of zebra stripes. Combine it with matching eye and headgear, and you are basically facing a pudgy-looking version of The Black Knight

Do a Google search on various nations' Secret Police and you'll find something in common...
I think that's quite a stretch. What color, exactly, would you find unintimidating?

Regardless, there is an actual need for uniforms to be sharp and exhibit command presence. Hard to do that in pink fairy wings.
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Old August 16, 2014, 02:10 PM   #48
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I should be able to argue the entire constitution any time and any where, right?
If you are arguing with people like us, then sure you can. However if a police officer tells you to disperse or just even move to a different location. You are required by law to do so. Any arguing will more then likely land you in jail. Of course you can argue with your cell mates or the officer at the jail house all you want too. You might even find a lawyer or two in the cell with you to argue with.


Quote:
I have the right to peaceably protest last time I checked.
Yes you do, as long as you are not imposing your will on someone else. Or breaking the law in some manner while you do so. Why don't you ask that store owner how he feels about the crowd that broke into his store and looted it. My guess is he would not feel they had a constitutional right to do so. Of course in their minds they did it peacefully which made it alright.
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Old August 16, 2014, 02:20 PM   #49
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Watching from the UK, I am surprised at the use of tear gas its a indiscriminate weapon. They have had riots here that make the disorder in Ferguson, look like a stroll in the park. But I can't remember tear gas being used.
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Old August 16, 2014, 03:02 PM   #50
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Of course in their minds they did it peacefully which made it alright.
I didn't think there was any such thing as "peacefully breaking and entering."
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