by James Tracy
“Global Goals” Is Lavishly-Funded Public Relations Endeavor “We the People” Never Voted For.
This month delegates to the United Nations ratified the so-called “Global Goals For Sustainable Development.” This will involve a radical, far-reaching social and economic transformation of everyday life that has been in the works for decades.
Thus a portion of such finances will be apportioned to thought and behavioral modification toward ideational acceptance of continued corporate ascendance, wealth and resource redistribution, and the breakdown of traditional borders that for better or worse have defined the human condition since the feudal era–from gender and common morality to the nation state. As the “Global Goals” website declares, “We are not a generation of bystanders. We are global citizens.”
Below is the campaign’s slickly produced promotional video.
Truthstream Media has developed a clever interpretation of the UN’s “Global Goals.” Unfortunately, these are by no means exaggerations but rather illustrate the hypocrisy of this campaign, which in reality involves an accelerated privatization of the commons and even our own bodies combined with elaborate psychological warfare to disguise such endeavors as social activism.
What’s that you say? You’re not on board? See you in the gulag, comrade.
Goal 1: End poverty in all its forms everywhere
Translation: Centralized banks, IMF, World Bank, Fed to control all finances, digital one world currency in a cashless society
Goal 2: End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture
Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages
Translation: Mass vaccination, Codex Alimentarius
Goal 4: Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all
Translation: UN propaganda, brainwashing through compulsory education from cradle to grave
Goal 5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls
Translation: Population control through forced “Family Planning”
Goal 6: Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all
Translation: Privatize all water sources, don’t forget to add fluoride
Goal 7: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all
Translation: Smart grid with smart meters on everything, peak pricing
Goal 8: Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all
Translation: TPP, free trade zones that favor megacorporate interests
Goal 9: Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation
Translation: Toll roads, push public transit, remove free travel, environmental restrictions
Goal 10: Reduce inequality within and among countries
Translation: Even more regional government bureaucracy like a mutant octopus
Goal 11: Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable
Translation: Big brother big data surveillance state
Goal 12: Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns
Translation: Forced austerity
Goal 13: Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts*
Translation: Cap and Trade, carbon taxes/credits, footprint taxes
Goal 14: Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development
Translation: Environmental restrictions, control all oceans including mineral rights from ocean floors
Goal 15: Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss
Translation: More environmental restrictions, more controlling resources and mineral rights
Goal 16: Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels
Translation: UN “peacekeeping” missions (ex 1, ex 2), the International Court of (blind) Justice, force people together via fake refugee crises and then mediate with more “UN peacekeeping” when tension breaks out to gain more control over a region, remove 2nd Amendment in USA
Goal 17: Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development
Translation: Remove national sovereignty worldwide, promote globalism under the “authority” and bloated, Orwellian bureaucracy of the UN
Original article can be found here: http://memoryholeblog.com/2015/09/30/un-introduces-new-feudalism-under-guise-of-social-activism/
A growing number of people distrust you, resent you, fear you, even hate you. Some even wish you harm, and would be glad if they heard you had been killed. Now, you can tell yourself that it’s only nasty criminal scum who would ever think that way. You can concoct in your head all sorts of excuses for why so many people now view you as the primary threat to peace, freedom and security. Or you can take the advice of Sun Tzu, and “know your enemy.”
If you want to know why those “anti-police” folk think what they think, I can tell you. Because I am one of them. I have little to no respect for those who wear uniforms and badges. I expect police to be power-happy, dangerous, irrational and immoral. This was not always the case. I once viewed police as brave and righteous protectors and defenders. I had F.O.P. and Sheriff’s Department stickers on my car. I was a proud and vocal advocate of “justice, law and order.” (Only later did I realize that “law” is usually the arch enemy of both justice and order.) If you want to know why I no longer trust or respect those who wear uniforms and badges, here are the five main reasons:
Reason #1: “Just Following Orders”“Enforcing the law” is not automatically legitimate or moral. The most vicious tyrannies in history (under Mao, Stalin, Hitler, etc.) legalized their oppressions, which were then committed “law enforcers.” Historically speaking, far more injustice and murder has been committed in the name of “law” than has been committed in spite of the law. And those who directly perpetrated evil have often used the excuse that they were just doing as they were told, just following orders, just doing their job.
The majority of U.S. “law enforcers” are no different, enforcing whatever decrees the politicians may enact, no matter how arbitrary or ridiculous they might be, and then trying to excuse their behavior using the classic cop-out, “Hey, I don’t make the law, I just enforce it.” You may have even used that one yourself. Just be aware that when you say that, you are essentially admitting that whatever the politicians tell you to inflict upon your fellow man, you will, without question. And that makes you the primary threat to humanity.
Some argue that cops are noble and virtuous, except for the occasional “bad apple.” That is false. In a situation where the “law” is immoral and oppressive—as is the case in the U.S. today—any cop who refuses to enforce unjust “laws” will be fired, leaving only those who are willing to inflict injustice upon others whenever the politicians tell them to. The instances of cops refusing to enforce unjust “laws” are extremely rare. The vast majority continue to commit evil while accepting no responsibility for their actions, and even lashing out at any who condemn them for the evil they personally perpetrate. Whether or not you inflict oppression “by the book” or not is irrelevant. Carrying out legalized, officially-sanctioned violent aggression still makes you the bad guy.
Reason #2: Legalized PiracyDespite the silly rhetoric about “protect and serve,” the primary job of most law enforcers is to look for excuses to take people’s money. Most police are nothing more than glorified tax collectors, always on the lookout—often as a result of “quotas”—for whatever trivial violation or infraction might justify a citation or an arrest, usually for victimless “crimes.” Make no mistake: whenever you rob (“fine”) or kidnap (“arrest”) someone who didn’t harm, endanger, or threaten anyone else, that makes you the aggressor, the thug, the bad guy. The fact that politicians gave their official blessing for you to be a bully and a crook doesn’t make it okay. In some cases, the legalized piracy is extremely blatant, such as under the “civil asset forfeiture” laws, where police commit armed robbery, stealing cash and other property based on the mere accusation—without proof or trial—that the property was somehow related to criminal activity.
Reason #3: Prone to ViolenceThe epidemic of police brutality is not merely bad luck. Teaching someone that he has “authority” over others and training him to try to gain control over every situation will naturally cause someone to become an arrogant, abusive bully. If you truly believe that wearing a badge and a uniform gives you special rights, gives you the right to detain and interrogate people, boss them around and control them, then you are automatically going to treat others as your inferiors, and you will lash out at any who don’t bow to your supposed “authority.” And if you don’t truly believe that the badge and uniform gives you special rights, you will either quit or be fired.
“Abuse of authority” is redundant. History shows one heinous example after another of what people become when they are given power over others. It should be clear to anyone who understands psychology and human nature why police have much higher rates of domestic abuse. Your job trained you to be a violent control freak. If and when your violence changes from “legal” violence to “illegal” violence, why should anyone be surprised? You are a professional thug.
Reason #4: Gang MentalityWhen a criminal cop abuses, assaults, or even kills an innocent person, the vast majority of other cops can be counted on to take the side of the badge-wearing perpetrator. Police unions and departments are constantly making excuses, even for outright murder, always insisting that whatever anyone with a badge did must have been justified. “It’s a dangerous, stressful job, you don’t understand what it’s like, and you don’t know the whole story, and he feared for his life.” The same old broken record plays over and over again, as one example of police brutality after another comes to light. The “bad apple” argument rings hollow when all the other “apples” defend and protect their fellow gang members, no matter how egregious, illegal, or immoral their behavior. Where are examples of these supposed “good cops” arresting the bad ones, or at least doing something to try to stop police abuse? Instead, one video after another shows that when a thug with a badge is committing evil, all the other cops in the area will, at best, passively watch the abuse like spineless cowards, and at worse, will join in like sadistic thugs.
In short, “law enforcers” make up the most dishonest, violent street gang in the country, loyal only to their fellow gang members, showing little or no concern for anyone else. It is sickening how quickly and easily badge-wearers routinely endanger, threaten, assault and even kill others, with little or no provocation. Then they try to cover their paranoia, sadism and criminal negligence with excuses about how dangerous the job is, which is statistically untrue anyway.
When an average person is killed, the police fill out a report about it. When one of their fellow gang members dies, they will invest all the time, resources and man-power they have at their disposal, often endangering, harassing, terrorizing and attacking innocents in the process, as happen with the Eric Frein and Christopher Dorner cases. It is obvious which lives matter to police, and which don’t.
Reason #5: Criminals with BadgesThe gang mentality, and the disregard for the safety and freedom of everyone else, naturally leads to police becoming criminals themselves, lying under oath, planting evidence, selling drugs, running extortion rackets, and so on. Police are only human beings, but human beings who are trained to control and extort others, trained to view and treat others with disdain, and trained to believe that they are so important and righteous that basic morality doesn’t apply to them. Add to that the fact that police “take care of their own,” and rarely investigate or prosecute their fellow officers for criminal conduct, and it is obvious why so many cops become the criminals they pretend to be protecting society from. For example, the Philadelphia narcotics squad was just outed as a bunch of drug-dealing extortionist thugs. And the gang members in blue know that they can almost always count on their fellow gang members to look the other way when they break the law themselves. When one officer does have the fortitude and courage to speak or act out against police misconduct, invariably all the other badge-wearers will gang up on the “traitor,” for having chosen truth and justice over loyalty to the gang.
Where This Road LeadsA look back at history strongly suggests what the outcome of this situation will be. Police will become more brazen, more criminal, more violent, and no amount of protests or political action will do a thing to stop it. Every indication is that the power-happy thuggery of those who imagine themselves to be “authority” will naturally get worse and worse, until the people have no choice but to violently defend themselves against the thugs in blue. And that will only make the cops less restrained, more paranoid, more trigger-happy, more criminal, and more violent.
Making excuses for your thuggery is not going to make people trust you or respect you more. If you actually want the respect of the people, if you actually want to be a force for truth and justice, then start publicly condemning police misconduct and abuse. Start arresting the criminals who wear badges. Start treating other people as your equals, instead of as your subjects. And if you don’t, then don’t be surprised when the people resent you, distrust you, fear you, and hate you. If you are content to think and act like just another street gang (albeit a very well funded and well armed street gang), becoming ever more lawless and violent, don’t be surprised if one day one of your intended victims takes it upon himself to enforce a little justice of his own. You will have earned it.
Read more at http://thefreethoughtproject.com/5-reasons-law-enforcement-america-creates-fear-resentment-safety/#sttVc2glbDCYjYwW.99
Recently, I held a Q&A after a seminar and was also invited onto a podcast to discuss what happened. Below are links to the podcast and the Youtube video of the Q&A. Watch, listen and then comment if you'd like.
Free Your Mind Podcast #20 Link (Click Here)
Recently I listened to a debate online which really didn't settle anything for me. The only thing that I got out of it was that many in the world today give more credibility to dictionary definitions than to the etymology of words. That's to say that people are more inclined to go with what somebody wrote in a book 200 yrs ago as the only definitive meaning of a word, than to go by what the intention behind the word was meant to convey. In other words, how did that word come into existence. Below is an EDITED audio clip of the debate between Clint Richardson and Marc Stevens that was hosted on Gnostic Media. First is the edited audio clip followed by the full 3 hour debate, and below will be a link to the hosting website. Just posting this online to get some conversation going. Let's see what happens.
EDITED AUDIO CLIP
Debate: Clint Richardson vs. Mark Stevens – “Anarchy: A Modern Fallacy?” – #231
What “Fighting for Our Freedom” Actually Means in Police State USA?By Josie Wales on February 7, 2015
Please stop fighting for my freedom.
Please stop fighting for my freedom of speech. It’s not working.
While you’re overseas, killing people so “I have the right to say that,” good people all over the country are being put in cages for thinking freedom of speech is still a right that will not be violated.
“Free speech zones” are used to quarantine humans who wish to express their opinions, to protect others from the dangers of their words. Independent journalists are detained for reporting on the crimes of the government for which you fight. It has become commonplace, when an average person records police abuse, to have cameras seized, evidence destroyed, and witnesses threatened or caged. Whistleblowers are kidnapped and prosecuted for exposing corruption and wrongdoing. Critics of those in power are spied on, demonized, harassed and characterized as potential terrorists.
Please stop fighting for my right to keep and bear arms. It’s not working.
I can no longer legally walk around with the means to defend myself against an attacker in some of the most dangerous cities in the country. I can’t move to New York because the law prohibits me from keeping a defense rifle in my home to protect myself from possible invaders. The ruling class you serve continues to vilify and harass gun owners. They continue to try to reduce the weaponry available to average citizens while police forces across the country are being militarized with all manners of weapons of war.
Please stop fighting for my right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. It’s not working.
Every day, in every city, honest Americans are being detained, searched and robbed by men and women with badges and guns, without warrant or justification. In the name of “no-knock raids,” heavily armed agents of the state are executing paramilitary invasions on the homes of Americans at an alarming rate. More and more frequently, such raids are inflicted upon innocents, whether as a result of invading the wrong house or the raids being the result of rumors or false information. Such raids often uncover no contraband or evidence of any crime, and yet still result in innocent men, women and children being traumatized, injured, or even killed.
Meanwhile, traffic checkpoints and “stop and frisk” policies are now used to prevent Americans from traveling freely. Due process has been turned on its head by requiring individuals to prove their innocence, when there is no reason to suspect them of having committed a crime. At regulatory checkpoints, armed government agents can stop you, briefly question you, and look in and around your personal vehicle. If a police dog reacts a certain way–that dogs can be trained to do on command*–the police can call that probable cause. They can then use it as an excuse to detain you and tear your car apart.
While agents of the state would never let YOU use the excuse of “ignorance of the law,” the Supreme Court now says that if the police violate the law when detaining, interrogating and searching you, that’s okay as long as their actions were based upon a “reasonable” mistake regarding the law.
Our children are no longer able to use their imagination freely in schools, or sell lemonade in their front yard without running the risk of being intimidated or detained by police. Feeding the homeless, collecting rainwater, planting gardens, selling raw milk, playing musical instruments on public property, and dancing in the wrong place are all now illegal acts that have been targeted by police force.
There are now too many instances of individuals being robbed, assaulted, even killed with no due process and no trial, to have even more than a fraction of them make the news. There is nothing “limited” about the United States government. It is absurd to claim that it represents and serves the people, or that it does what it does with the consent of the people. It dominates, subjugates and terrorizes the people.
So I ask again, soldiers, please stop fighting for my freedom.
It’s not working, and you’re endangering your lives and the lives of others in vain. If you truly want to fight for freedom, then please come home. We need you here, resisting the only gang of terrorists that poses by far the biggest threat to the security and liberty of the American people: the United States government.
Originally posted at the following link:
Most of us associate the holiday with happy Pilgrims and Indians sitting down to a big feast. And that did happen - once.
The story began in 1614 when a band of English explorers sailed home to England with a ship full of Patuxet Indians bound for slavery. They left behind smallpox which virtually wiped out those who had escaped. By the time the Pilgrims arrived in Massachusetts Bay they found only one living Patuxet Indian, a man named Squanto who had survived slavery in England and knew their language. He taught them to grow corn and to fish, and negotiated a peace treaty between the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag Nation. At the end of their first year, the Pilgrims held a great feast honoring Squanto and the Wampanoags.
But as word spread in England about the paradise to be found in the new world, religious zealots called Puritans began arriving by the boat load. Finding no fences around the land, they considered it to be in the public domain. Joined by other British settlers, they seized land, capturing strong young Natives for slaves and killing the rest. But the Pequot Nation had not agreed to the peace treaty Squanto had negotiated and they fought back. The Pequot War was one of the bloodiest Indian wars ever fought.
In 1637 near present day Groton, Connecticut, over 700 men, women and children of the Pequot Tribe had gathered for their annual Green Corn Festival which is our Thanksgiving celebration. In the predawn hours the sleeping Indians were surrounded by English and Dutch mercenaries who ordered them to come outside. Those who came out were shot or clubbed to death while the terrified women and children who huddled inside the longhouse were burned alive. The next day the governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony declared "A Day Of Thanksgiving" because 700 unarmed men, women and children had been murdered.
Cheered by their "victory", the brave colonists and their Indian allies attacked village after village. Women and children over 14 were sold into slavery while the rest were murdered. Boats loaded with as many as 500 slaves regularly left the ports of New England. Bounties were paid for Indian scalps to encourage as many deaths as possible.
Following an especially successful raid against the Pequot in what is now Stamford, Connecticut, the churches announced a second day of "thanksgiving" to celebrate victory over the heathen savages. During the feasting, the hacked off heads of Natives were kicked through the streets like soccer balls. Even the friendly Wampanoag did not escape the madness. Their chief was beheaded, and his head impaled on a pole in Plymouth, Massachusetts -- where it remained on display for 24 years.
The killings became more and more frenzied, with days of thanksgiving feasts being held after each successful massacre. George Washington finally suggested that only one day of Thanksgiving per year be set aside instead of celebrating each and every massacre. Later Abraham Lincoln decreed Thanksgiving Day to be a legal national holiday during the Civil War -- on the same day he ordered troops to march against the starving Sioux in Minnesota.
This story doesn't have quite the same fuzzy feelings associated with it as the one where the Indians and Pilgrims are all sitting down together at the big feast. But we need to learn our true history so it won't ever be repeated. Next Thanksgiving, when you gather with your loved ones to Thank God for all your blessings, think about those people who only wanted to live their lives and raise their families. They, also took time out to say "thank you" to the Creator for all their blessings.
Our Thanks to Hill & Holler, Column by Susan Bates firstname.lastname@example.org
(Link to original article)
US Police Have Killed Over 5,000 Civilians Since 9/11Statistically speaking, Americans should be more fearful of the local cops than “terrorists.”By Katie Rucke | November 6, 2013
(Click here to go to original link)
Though Americans commonly believe law enforcement’s role in society is to protect them and ensure peace and stability within the community, the sad reality is that police departments are often more focused on enforcing laws, making arrests and issuing citations. As a result of this as well as an increase in militarized policing techniques, Americans are eight times more likely to be killed by a police officer than by a terrorist, estimates a Washington’s Blog report based on official statistical data.
Though the U.S. government does not have a database collecting information about the total number of police involved shootings each year, it’s estimated that between 500 and 1,000 Americans are killed by police officers each year. Since 9/11, about 5,000 Americans have been killed by U.S. police officers, which is almost equivalent to the number of U.S. soldiers who have been killed in the line of duty in Iraq.
Because individual police departments are not required to submit information regarding the use of deadly force by its officers, some bloggers have taken it upon themselves to aggregate that data. Wikipedia also has a list of “justifiable homicides” in the U.S., which was created by documenting publicized deaths.
Mike Prysner, one of the local directors of the Los Angeles chapter for ANSWER — an advocacy group that asks the public to Act Now to Stop War and End Racism — told Mint Press News earlier this year that the “epidemic” of police harassment and violence is a nationwide issue.
He said groups like ANSWER are trying to hold officers accountable for abuse of power. “[Police brutality] has been an issue for a very long time,” Prysner said, explaining that in May, 13 people were killed in Southern California by police.
As Mint Press News previously reported, each year there are thousands of claims of police misconduct. According to the CATO Institute’s National Police Misconduct Reporting Project, in 2010 there were 4,861 unique reports of police misconduct involving 6,613 sworn officers and 6,826 alleged victims.
Most of those allegations of police brutality involved officers who punched or hit victims with batons, but about one-quarter of the reported cases involved firearms or stun guns.
Racist policing- A big element in the police killings, Prysner says, is racism. “A big majority of those killed are Latinos and Black people,” while the police officers are mostly White, he said. “It’s a badge of honor to shoot gang members so [the police] go out and shoot people who look like gang members,” Prysner argued, giving the example of 34-year-old Rigoberto Arceo, who was killed by police on May 11.
According to a report from the Los Angeles Times, Arceo, who was a biomedical technician at St. Francis Medical Center, was shot and killed after getting out of his sister’s van. The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department says Arceo “advanced on the deputy and attempted to take the deputy’s gun.” However, Arceo’s sister and 53-year-old Armando Garcia — who was barbecuing in his yard when the incident happened — say that Arceo had his hands above his head the entire time.
Prysner is not alone in his assertion that race is a major factor in officer-related violence. This past May, a study from the the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, an anti-racist activist organization, found that police officers, security guards or self-appointed vigilantes killed at least 313 Black people in 2012 — meaning one Black person was killed in the U.S. by law enforcement roughly every 28 hours.
Prysner said the relationship between police departments and community members needs to change and that when police shoot an unarmed person with their arms in the air over their head, the officer should be punished.
Culture of misconduct- “You cannot have a police force that is investigating and punishing itself,” Prysner said, adding that taxpayer money should be invested into the community instead of given to police to buy more guns, assault rifles and body armor.
Dissatisfied with police departments’ internal review policies, some citizens have formed volunteer police watch groups to prevent the so-called “Blue Code of Silence” effect and encourage police officers to speak out against misconduct occurring within their department.
As Mint Press News previously reported, a report released earlier this year found that of the 439 cases of police misconduct that then had been brought before the Minneapolis’s year-old misconduct review board, not one of the police officers involved has been disciplined.
Although the city of Minneapolis spent $14 million in payouts for alleged police misconduct between 2006 and 2012, despite the fact that the Minneapolis Police Department often concluded that the officers involved in those cases did nothing wrong.
Other departments have begun banning equipment such as Tasers, but those decisions were likely more about protecting the individual departments from lawsuits than ensuring that officers are not equipped with weapons that cause serious and sometimes fatal injuries when used.
To ensure officers are properly educated on how to use their weapons and are aware of police ethics, conflict resolution and varying cultures within a community, police departments have historically held training programs for all officers. But due to tighter budgets and a shift in priorities, many departments have not provided the proper continuing education training programs for their officers.
Charles Ramsey, president of both the Major Cities Chiefs Association and the Police Executive Research Forum, called that a big mistake, explaining that it is essential officers are trained and prepared for high-stress situations:
“Not everybody is going to be able to make those kinds of good decisions under pressure, but I do think that the more reality-based training that we provide, the more we put people in stressful situations to make them respond and make them react.”
GI Joe replaces Carl Winslow- In order to help local police officers protect themselves while fighting the largely unsuccessful War on Drugs, the federal government passed legislation in 1994 allowing the Pentagon to donate surplus military equipment from the Cold War to local police departments. Meaning that “weaponry designed for use on a foreign battlefield has been handed over for use on American streets … against American citizens.”
So while the U.S. military fights the War on Terror abroad, local police departments are fighting another war at home with some of the same equipment as U.S. troops, and protocol that largely favors officers in such tactics as no-knock raids.
Radley Balko, author of “Rise of the Warrior Cop,” wrote in the Wall Street Journal in August:
“Since the 1960s, in response to a range of perceived threats, law-enforcement agencies across the U.S., at every level of government, have been blurring the line between police officer and soldier.
“Driven by martial rhetoric and the availability of military-style equipment—from bayonets and M-16 rifles to armored personnel carriers—American police forces have often adopted a mind-set previously reserved for the battlefield. The war on drugs and, more recently, post-9/11 antiterrorism efforts have created a new figure on the U.S. scene: the warrior cop—armed to the teeth, ready to deal harshly with targeted wrongdoers, and a growing threat to familiar American liberties.”
As Mint Press News previously reported, statistics from an FBI report released in September reveal that a person is arrested on marijuana-related charges in the U.S. every 48 seconds, on average — most were for simple possession charges.
According to the FBI’s report, there were more arrests for marijuana possession than for the violent crimes of murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery and aggravated assault — 658,231 compared with 521,196 arrests.
While groups that advocate against police brutality recognize and believe that law enforcement officials should be protected while on duty, many say that local police officers do not need to wear body armor, Kevlar helmets and tactical equipment vests — all while carrying assault weapons.
“We want the police to keep up with the latest technology. That’s critical,” American Civil Liberties Union senior counsel Kara Dansky said. “But policing should be about protection, not combat.”
According to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, there are more than 900,000sworn law enforcement officers in the United States. In 2012, 120 officers were killed in the line of duty. The deadliest day in law enforcement history was reportedly Sept. 11, 2001, when 72 officers were killed.
Despite far fewer officers dying in the line of duty compared with American citizens, police departments are not only increasing their use of protective and highly volatile gear, but are increasingly setting aside a portion of their budget to invest in new technology such as drones, night vision goggles, remote robots, surveillance cameras, license plate readers and armored vehicles that amount to unarmed tanks.
Though some officers are on board with the increased militarization and attend conferences such as the annual Urban Shield event, others have expressed concern with the direction the profession is heading.
For example, former Arizona police officer Jon W. McBride said police concerns about being “outgunned” were likely a “self-fulfilling prophecy.” He added that “if not expressly prohibited, police managers will continually push the arms race,” because “their professional literature is predominately [sic] based on the acquiring and use of newer weapons and more aggressive techniques to physically overwhelm the public. In many cases, however, this is the opposite of smart policing.”
“Coupled with the paramilitary design of the police bureaucracy itself, the police give in to what is already a serious problem in the ranks: the belief that the increasing use of power against a citizen is always justified no matter the violation. The police don’t understand that in many instances they are the cause of the escalation and bear more responsibility during an adverse outcome.
“The suspects I encountered as a former police officer and federal agent in nearly all cases granted permission for me to search their property when asked, often despite unconcealed contraband. Now, instead of making a simple request of a violator, many in law enforcement seem to take a more difficult and confrontational path, fearing personal risk. In many circumstances they inflame the citizens they are engaging, thereby needlessly putting themselves in real and increased jeopardy.”
Another former police officer who wished to remain anonymous agreed with McBride and told Balko,
“American policing really needs to return to a more traditional role of cops keeping the peace; getting out of police cars, talking to people, and not being prone to overreaction with the use of firearms, tasers, or pepper spray. … Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been in more than my share tussles and certainly appreciate the dangers of police work, but as Joseph Wambaugh famously said, the real danger is psychological, not physical.”
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This is a podcast show I listen to, and an episode which I felt needed to be spread far and wide. This is a very important (albeit uncomfortable) show.
You can follow and support Meria Heller at her website WWW.MERIA.NET