I remember the good ol’ days when the mission of the police was to protect and serve. The police knew their communities and the communities new them. Police were respected for their courage and sacrifice.
We live in a new age where “protect and serve” has given way to “enforce and intimidate.” Folks like myself that used to respect the police now keep a watchful eye on the increasing isolation of what has morphed to “law enforcement” and their growing isolation and militarization.
The militarization started innocently enough. In the 1033 program started in 1997, the military could transfer excess equipment to police departments. The goal was laudatory – to equip local departments to handle violent drug gangs. Well, crime has plummeted since 1997. However, the war on terror, 9/11, and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have produced a plethora of serious military hardware combined with a national police force called the Department of Homeland Security, which Obama implied should rival the military in power.
How is this playing out? The use of over-equipped, under-disciplined, under-trained, and poorly led SWAT teams to serve warrants for non-violent offenses have cost many innocent lives. The former military users of that equipment had extensive and continuous training, a well-understood strict disciplinary system, and highly-trained and experienced leadership. Most of this equipment was designed for military professionals to use on combatant enemies, not civilian amateurs to use on fellow U.S. citizens.
We see all this playing out in Ferguson, MO. Leaving the igniting incident aside, we see the usual rioting and looting by animals at any perceived excuse. The looting animals aren’t protesters, but hardened thugs and predators who take advantage of tragedies. I have no sympathy for looters or rioters.
That said, the police responded to this relatively small number of thugs by terrorizing the entire community. Mashable did a photo essay comparing the police in Ferguson with our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. Senator Rand Paul wrote a great essay about the police’s extreme militarization visible in Ferguson, and Ferguson is far from unique.
In the overreaction to the blow-back from the militaristic intimidation, the police have now virtually abandoned citizens, their property and their businesses. It has fallen to property and business owners to protect themselves and their interests, just as it did in the Korean community in the LA riots – the 2nd Amendment in full action.
So, in Ferguson we see the necessity of both sides of the 2nd Amendment. First, we see the fruition of Obama’s trampling of the Constitution by building an illegal civilian army while attempting to disarm the people through “common sense gun control”, that government threat being the core reason that our Founders included the 2nd Amendment. Second, we see the government then failing to protect its citizens (as governments are all destined to fail), so that armed citizens must stand and fight to survive.
Don’t be prey. Be prepared. Be prepared to protect your freedom and your family. Arm yourself and get training for a day that we all hope never comes in our communities. But it certainly can, and with little if any warning.