View Full Version : About that SWAT magazine thing...

November 25, 2001, 12:07 PM
I thought I'd see what the fuss was all about, and went to look at the PDF y'all posted -- thanks for the preview guys!

Seemed well-written, and good content, but I have to admit, I was a little disturbed by something. It seemed to me that the prevailing attitude throughtout most of the articles was "well.. the special forces and elite foreign military units are using this, so we must need it to in law enforcement." I confess, as I was reading throuth the articles, I found myself wondering, only half in joking, "what, is the next issue gonna have an article on proper tactical use of the mortar, claymores, or SAW?"

I don't mean to start a cop-bashing thread, and anyone who knows me knows I have nothing but respect for the guys out there doing a tough job without a lot of appreciation. That said.. seems to me things like SWAT are helping erase the diff 'tween the armed forces and the police forces. I mean, seems to me that at some point, if it walks like a Marine, talks like a Marine.... it's prolly a Marine, ya know? Twenty more years of this, you think we might as well just dispense with special police units entirely, and transition 'em all over to MPs, for all the diff it would make?

Again.. don't mean to step on anyone's toes. I was just a little disturbed reading through the thing, and wondered what the rest of y'all thought about it.


November 25, 2001, 12:53 PM
Well, I subscribed to the darn thing on the assumption that with TFL/Rich Lucibella behind it, it'd get out of the doldrums it had been in and turn into a good magazine, with an appeal to more than the "cowboy" cops, or Special Ops wannabees.:rolleyes:
Oh well. Two issues later, SOS... Unless things take a turn for the better, I won't re-up, I don't really approve of militarizing the police. Makes me think things like: Why do they need that stuff? Why the ninja outfits? Police state?

I expect a large part of this is one-upsmanship practiced by the politican chiefs in the various departments. Most of the guys on the sharp end are pretty decent.


George Hill
November 25, 2001, 12:54 PM
They are working on articles about the 120MM Rhinemetal smoothbore.

November 25, 2001, 01:12 PM
Amen, I read an article in SWAT this summer about a suppressed 50cal Barret and I went high and to the right. No police dept can justify a 50cal. No damn way, no how. All our tax dollars at work, plus siezed assests. You want to use military hardware, join the infantry, or deal with the BATF goon squad. No shortcuts for PD's. S/F...Ken M

November 25, 2001, 02:56 PM
I agree that local PDs with heavy military equipment gives me creepy images of Europe in the late thirties early forties.

That being said, while I don't think they need a lot of that equipment, the LA robbery is proof they do need a thorough knowledge of the various weapons capabilities in an urban environment. SWAT mag is a good source of that knowledge.

November 25, 2001, 06:02 PM
Er...excuse me, but how many of you that are questioning the need for police to use "military" type hardware have been in a shootout with a biker gang, a whacked out speed freak with an AK, or a barricaded suspect?
It does happen you know.

Bear in mind that you would be condemning the police for using the very same militia type weapons that you are technically afforded the use of per the Second Amendment. The same weapons that you bemoan the unavailability or restriction of for your own use. Sounds like a bad case of sour grapes served a la Kalifornia/NJ/NY/MA....
Don't blame SWAT for that, blame your legislators.
SWAT simply reports and observes the fact that agencies ARE using these weapons, and to what effect.

Believe me, there is a time and a place for the police (and Law Abiding Citizens) to have all of the firepower that can be mustered, and the fact that some departments are forward thinking and realistic enough in their approach to dealing with heavily armed and very dangerous criminals is comforting to me.
it is comforting to know that the PD in my town is one such.
I also draw comfort from living in a state that does NOT have idiotic weapons laws. We Arizona Citizens can (and often do) own anything that the police or military can here in Arizona. :D

Use SWAT for what it is: A magazine dedicated to getting the information out. Good, solid info on training, tactics, and the related hardware written by some of the most authoritative heads in our business.
Study it.
It WILL come in handy.

Oh... and next time you get the chance to oust an Antigun legislator, vote early and vote often!!
Mad Dog

Jody Hudson
November 25, 2001, 06:24 PM
There are only four problems I have with a large portion of our current civilian police force.

1. They are usually forgetful that they ARE civilians.

2. There is a HUGE % that are wannabe Rambos.

3. There is a HUGE % that have formed an Us and Them attitude.

4. There is a Huge % that have a mis-understanding or disagreement with the first three words of "Serve and Protect".

Other than that we DO have a need for some civilian police force and good, intelligent, responsible, civil, polite, educated and good natured police people. At one time Delaware had perhaps the most intelligent, useful, polite, effective, moral, and honorable police forces in the nation. Now we have mostly politically correct Rambo wannabeeeeeeeeeeessss with no clue and no interest in Serve and Protect. The older officers are still "the Finest" not often the newer and dangerous idiots.

I've had no bad experience with the police of this state ever. However, working in a gun shop at times and frequently visiting others where they frequent -- I've seen a HUGE % of recent police officers that I wouldn't trust to watch a stray dog or to serve crackers or protect a rock. They cause me to fear my government more than any other faction including the idiot politicians who pull thier strings.

Nevertheless; SWAT magazine MAY grow up to be a useful mag. I hope so. But if it caters to the Rambo wannnnnnaaabeeeeeeeeeesss which it seems to be doing - I'll be gone next year as well.

Rant OFF.

Jody Hudson
November 25, 2001, 06:27 PM
I recently came across this quote:

"Actually, one is done wrong by the weaklings of this world, not by the strong men. One does not have to enslave and control by force those whose conduct he does not fear. When you find an individual who is bent entirely upon a course of the arduous control of the motions of others, you are looking at an individual who is afraid. By their fear you shall know them."

I think it sums up my last post on this thread.

Ed Brunner
November 25, 2001, 07:33 PM
You nailed it on one point, sort of.
Why should the PD be allowed any weapons that I can't possess?

November 25, 2001, 11:30 PM
Mad Dog you make some excellent points.

And I do agree with you that there is a need for a least a good carbine in the patrol car, hence my reference to the LA bank robberies.

I also agree that both the LEOs and the average citizen should have equal access to the weapons of their choice. That being said, both the citizen and the officer have an equal duty to learn the proper use of said weapon.

Yes, some departments are forward thinking and provide them with both the equipment and the training but some just put the equipment in the car because department "A" over in the next county has them and don't train the officer to use the tools they are given.

Where we may or may not agree is on what I call heavy weapons such as a .50 cal Barrett or a grenade launcher. I can't think of a use related to law enforcement for these types of weapons, and the high cost would be better spent on training or upgrading of current equipment.

If anyone can give me an example of where heavy weapons would be useful I promise to read your comments with an open mind.

November 25, 2001, 11:41 PM
If the police had to jump through the hoops that ordinary gunowners do, the FOP and Chiefs of every city in America would be beating down the doors of Congress and the President. But because law enforcement is exempt from all gun control measures, they see fit to arm themselves to the teeth at taxpayer expense, using weapons too "evil" for a common citizen to be trusted with.

Art Eatman
November 26, 2001, 12:26 AM
Jody, I gotta strongly disagree with you on your "huge %". From what I've seen, it's actually a rather small percentage.

IMO, there seems to be more of an "us vs. them" hostility with the federal guys than with state and local LEOs. I know two guys who have fairly recently gone through FLETC who told me they saw an "us vs. them" attitude in the program. Not overt, but sorta "atmospheric" and directed against those not carrying the federal badge.


November 26, 2001, 10:57 AM
This is patently untrue.
Even Kalifornia, one of the most notoriously "anti" states as far as civilians are concerned, has strict laws regulating what, when and where LE can purchase and use weapons.
Cops there have a 15 day wait if they buy a gun for personal use, just like civilians.
PDs have to justify/register their purchases of machine guns, suppressors, and DDs with ATF, just like we do.
They are sometimes exempted from the transfer taxes.

Law enforcement use of heavy weapons like grenade launchers and .50M2 Browning rifles is not always justifiable, but there are places where they are handy and much needed.
40mm Grenade launchers can lob tear gas canisters and smoke as well as explosives and frag. Mil surp gas and smoke canisters are inexpensively available through the DRMO, and can save a department beaucoup bucks that they can spend on other programs, and gear. The 38mm civilian tubes are more expensive to feed.
A fifty can allow you to punch through a hard target like an armored car or reinforced concrete barricade.

Bear in mind that the forward thinking departments obtain this gear with the "Better to have it and not need it, than need it and not have it" perspective in mind.

Ed Brunner,
Don't ask ME why you can't have something in your state, ask your legislators.

November 26, 2001, 02:12 PM
If the police had to jump through the hoops that ordinary gunowners do, the FOP and Chiefs of every city in America would be beating down the doors of Congress and the President. But because law enforcement is exempt from all gun control measures, they see fit to arm themselves to the teeth at taxpayer expense, using weapons too "evil" for a common citizen to be trusted with.

The Lautenberg Amendment put quite a few LEOs out of jobs -- no exemption there.

I cannot buy regular capacity magazines for my sidearm, because my department only authorizes regular capacity magazines for the Glack 22, and I don't carry one. I'm stuck with a 10-round Clinton special on duty -- no exemption there.

I have to jump through the same hoops that any other citizen must jump through to get the good stuff -- no exemption there.

Unless, you mean the really good stuff, like the FN 5.7mm hoglegs -- in which case, my department will take the goodies (without compensation, or with minimal compensation) should we part company in the future.

I guess that could be called an exemption, but it doesn't seem like much of one to me.


Rich Lucibella
November 26, 2001, 03:15 PM
I've moved this thread in order to avoid charges of "favoritism" in enforcing the Policies. The topic clearly belongs in the S.W.A.T. Forum.

There's much I can say here, but I'll try to be brief. S.W.A.T. is about Training and Tactics. While these issues generally cut across employment lines, where can we look to find cutting edge stuff? At the local IDPA Match or within the specialized military and police teams and the excellent civilian schools across the country.

I, too, am adamantly opposed to the militarization of the Police. But I'm less concerned about their equipment than their police powers; I'm less concerned about their training than their individual mindset. As a result, we've commissioned Richard Stevens to write a column titled "Enemy at the Gate". One read of that column will point out that we're asking some hard questions of uniformed civilians.

What we're trying to do here is provide a vehicle for tactical minded folks to come together...that means cops and non-cops. To that end we've made some choices: We've rejected the glitz of puff pieces on guns that writers have yet to handle; We've focused on Tactics and Training. We will continue to report on the Training, Tactics and Equipment of Military and Police "elite" Teams.....let's face it, articles on the latest IDPA Tactics simply won't hold an audience. However, balance is the key word.

I agree with Mad Dog.....if some agencies or jurisdictions allow their cops to use weapons that the rest of us can't get (in the line of duty), it serves no purpose to blame the operator. Rather, one should blame the Legislator. Will our coverage of such items and Teams result in the further dumbing down of America to the growing and dangerous trend toward militarization of Law Enforcement....only for those who start out dumb enough in the first place. For them, I'm afraid there is no hope.

Finally, of 12 features listed in the December Issue, 11 are directly aimed at the Non-Uniformed Citizen:
1) 2nd Annual IDPA Championship
2) Valdata Scopes
3) Team Tactics for Families
4) Mossberg's Model 500 Shotgun
5) The Fighting Stance and Length of Pull
6) Bushmaster Urban Sniper Rifle
7) Colt Detective Special
8) Para-Ordinance LDA 45
9) Bodyguard: The True Story
10) Buying Used Firearms
11) Trapdoor Rifles...

The 12th Feature is on Germany's Federal Border Guard.

With that kind of a lineup, one is hard pressed to say that we haven't changed the direction of S.W.A.T. significantly. If our readers are dissatisfied with the direction or content of the magazine, we offer a money back guarantee on all unmailed issues. I say this, not with a "Take it or Leave it" attitude. However, I firmly believe in Capitalism and the financial repercussion of building a "lesser" mousetrap.

While no single magazine is for everybody, I'd really be interested in comparing any poster's suggested Table of Contents to the one I've posted above....for relevance, interest and non-LEO appeal.

As always, your comments and criticism are appreciated and encouraged. But we need more specificity to consider a directional change.
Rich Lucibella

Denny Hansen
November 26, 2001, 06:11 PM
S.W.A.T. Magazine is all about cops and what us commoners can’t own. NOT!
The following are the feature articles for the upcoming February issue of S.W.A.T:

Weapons Of Mass Destruction: Facts And Fallacies
Nuclear Site Protection: The Savannah River SRT
The CZ75B
Hitting With the Shotgun
A Talk with Ted Nugent
Thunder Ranch’s Urban Rifle High Intensity Tactical Class
World War I Weapons Of The Trenches
The Big Green Machine
Spyderco’s Gunting Knife
Ruger’s .44 Deerfield Carbine
Dealing With The Principle
Building A "Fackler" Box: Performance Test Your Own Ammo

Two of these articles are law enforcement specific, although I believe both are interesting for anyone with an open mind. The nuclear site article goes into detail about how an SRT protects the site. The article The Big Green Machine is about how surplus V150 armored personnel carriers can be acquired by individual agencies, and be used to save lives.

S.W.A.T. is mostly about training and tactics, and tactics can be used by anyone—not just cops. If you don’t believe this, have another look at the FBI’s Miami Massacre. Or the Newhall incident. Or the North Hollywood bank robbery. Each of those incidents had two thing in common: peace officers went up against two determined individuals who used tactics to their advantage and the officers disadvantage, and who had a fighting mindset.

As for the "us against them" mentality, I agree it exists. What many people fail to get, however, is that most cops are in the "us" part of the equation. And I, for one, am happy they are.

Denny Hansen

Jody Hudson
November 26, 2001, 06:40 PM
Hi Art,

Some years ago I would have given an agressive defense of the State and local police here; even though I used to get a few speeding tickets back then. That has ALL changed.

We almost NEVER see State or Local police, either one at any social function that includes anything other than other LEOs of the same jurisdiction. And we have numerous jurisdictions. It is really weird to me. Years ago, no matter where I went, there were some police at the function. Not ANY attend these days. I am not the only one to notice it.

One of my co-workers was a cop in the neighboring state and she noticed it there but said, come to think of it, it's almost perfect segregation here now.

The thing with federal police vs state or local has always existed and still does. Although, recently, that is in the last ten years or so, I've seen some improvement in this area with some of the federal police attitude toward some public, not much with the other LEOs of less than federal jurisdiction however.

The Natural Resource, Wildlife, Forestry, Marine and other such federal jurisdictions have a horrid attitude problem much of the time with the newer enforcement officers -- quite like a Hippie Gestapo as one of the ATF agents called them a couple of years ago.

I do all I can to try and encourage symbiotic interraction between all sorts of people and that includes all sorts of law enforcement and all sorts of citizens. This is the only place that I've loudly voiced my concern and Un-PC viewpoint, but it needs to be done I think.

For instance NRA meetings here; not one cop under the age of 50 in years. Ducks Unlimited meetings; not one cop at the last severa huge meetings of several thousand attendance as far as I saw and both of these used to be 20% police of all different flavors. Golf courses; there is a local police league but only one or two LEOs from outside the one town jurisdiction play and no other course that I know of. Few come to the gun shops anymore; they usually go to Wallmart or Kmart where they are anonymous if they hunt at all. But for years the only place that the cops hunted was a private club of thier own as far as I know. Movies; haven't seen a cop there in years. I've asked several what they do Friday and Saturday nights and they've all told me they have a group of other police friends and that they just visit other officers homes to drink, watch videos, listen to music, chat, eat, etc. No mingling at these with non LEOs from the half dozen or so that I've questioned.

This may be a local thing -- but it's local over most of our state as far as I know. One of my clients is retired police and although he and I are very close he has commented on the us and them attitude that he sees. He is in his late 60s I think and one of the best people I've ever met. I was shocked that he had the viewpoint as it is usually those born after 1965 or so that I get the us and them attitude from and the younger the more strongly it is shown usually.

I think they must show them too many videos of civilians shooting cops in traffic stops or knifing them in domestic disputes, etc. I even wonder if there is a policy here... a policy to not fraternize with the serfs. I doubt there is anything in writing but there certainly is in practice. I know a LOT of police as a result of being all over the place all day and of being active in several neighborhood watches and in being a active and concerned citizen. I call in reports to 911 with specifics whenever I see something. Since I always carry a small digital camera with me, if I see something suspicious I take pictures AND make a call.

As a Realtor, I'm on the road a lot and meet a lot of people -- and I've been doing this here for over 30 years. It has been a huge change. We once had a DSP that is Delaware State Police that was in my mind and that of others -- a national model of Serve and Protect. Have you noticed that those words are seldom on badges or police mottos anymore?

That's enough. I'm glad you DON'T have a similar situation in your area!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I hope you don't in the future either. But, I think it's pervasive and becoming more so.

And, no matter what... I'll probably keep on subscribing to the mag as a way of supporting Rich here - my favorite board next to my own!

November 26, 2001, 09:03 PM
Since you have contact with so many cops, you may want to start pitching "Community Policing" type efforts. We have it here, and the DARE and other kid related anti drug/anti gang programs, NRA/PD sponsored Eddy Eagle gun safety programs for the schools, as well as officer involvement in local functions has taken a lot of the edge off of the "Us vs Them" problem, and turned it into more of a "We" thing.
Granted, this is a small town, but we are growing rapidly.
I believe that these programs and involvement help keep the cops out of the "Everyone not a cop is a scumbag" mindset, and helps the community understand the needs and goals of the PD as well.

Again, this is working with the local cops, but DPS (Highway Patrol) is still openly hated by one and all. They are globally perceived as narrow minded, lazy ticket writers more concerned with enhancing the state's treasury than doing their "Department of Public Safety" thing. I might point out that this statewide community perception is grounded in well documented fact.
On a positive note, they have really nice uniforms...
My tax dollars at work.

Sorry if I have drifted to far off topic.
Mad Dog

Jody Hudson
November 26, 2001, 09:42 PM
I will look into that MD. I did some work into those areas in the past BUT not recently.

November 26, 2001, 10:52 PM
just like civilians

Maddog, cops ARE civilians, and the lack of understanding of that fact on the part of many LEOs is a serious problem. It's NOT just a word.

, I gotta strongly disagree with you on your "huge %". From what I've seen, it's actually a rather small percentage.

Art, that depends where you are. LAPD is a case in point, but Orange PD just south of there is also very bad, as is Garden Grove PD next door. I'm sure many other local PDs across the country are in bad shape too. But I agree that it's a bigger problem at the Federal level.

Rich, thanks for your comments. We know where you stand, and what better platform for preaching it than a mag read by LEOs?

November 27, 2001, 02:20 PM
I am a civilian and pesonally dont have much of a problem with LE using just about anything that I have seen in SWAT the past 10 years. Obviously a few of the weapons have very limited uses in LE. For example I doubt any agency needs more than 1 .50 caliber rifle but if they can afford one than I think they should get it, it could be useful in stopping a vehicle or something like that or for bomb disposal. I can see a use although sometimes very small for law enforcement to have any small arms short of a Browning M2. As for explosives I would have to question the need for anything past flashbangs and door breaching charges. I also agree with those saying that if LE can have it we should be able to get it just as easily. But that is a politician problem and a failure to vote on our part not a police matter.

December 6, 2001, 05:31 PM
It's more an old cop/young cop thing, but I hate getting the ol' hairy eyeball from the rambo wannabees who, while leaving my gun club's pistol range, where they're GUESTS, glare at the rifle shooters on the main line...

Then there's my (urban) neighborhood... Last time someone had to call the cops, they actually showed up, in multiple vehicles, in only a few minutes, instead of the 20+ they usually take... Of course, the call was about a young female running naked down the middle of the street...