March 3, 2015 by JImbo
See if you notice what I do in the following pictures:
Which one is not like the others?
Alright that’s not quite fair.
Most city cops on the beat look more like this:
Still don’t look very inviting do they?
Let’s try this again.
What do you see different?
And now compare those to:
See the difference?
They’re all professionals out there to help you, with vehicles painted to match their uniforms. However, which ones ACTUALLY look like they’re there to be SEEN and APPROACHED?
These guys don’t look at all willing to help you, now do they?
Besides, think about safety. Construction workers are not known for being wusses. Yet they work near highways and want to come home alive.
STAY SEEN, STAY ALIVE.
Yes again those are SWAT teams, but even the cop on the beat as I showed above wears black or very dark blue. Very little reflective. Rarely a logo to clearly state who they are. How many “undercover” cars are driving around that are anything BUT?
As if a criminal can’t figure out you’re driving a souped up police car without lights on it?
Other countries don’t have this same fixation on being “cool” and “intimidating” as a police officer.
I understand the whole “deterrence” idea and looking tough, but you can be professional without looking intimidating to the people you are PROTECTING.
Compare these two pics:
Which one would you go to for help? Which one would you trust? And let’s be honest. Do you think the highly visible cop is less able to protect you than the traditional “badass” one?
Even in tactical gear, lots of foreign cops are much less intimidating than our hyper-militarized ones. Heck, Israel is in the middle of a constant war zone and they don’t even generally wear bullet proof vests!
They’re approachable and visible, even carrying a machine gun.
Our police as a rule?
Not so much.
Again, as a rule. There ARE smaller departments and certain situations where there are less armed and armored cops out there. However, that’s becoming less and less as time goes on.
As the police keep raiding the military surplus stocks for more and more equipment, they’re resembling this:
Rather than this:
Do we really need another military force on our streets? It may not be intentional, but it is getting that way. Consider the way the terminology has even changed.
“Patrol cars” have turned into “Interceptors” and “Cruisers.”
“Citizens” are now all treated as “Suspects” even without evidence.
Police are taught to treat everyone with suspicion, instead of innocent until proven guilty.
All other Emergency Services personnel are taught to treat victims, patients, survivors, homeowners, neighbors and citizens.
It is an entirely different mindset.
Heck, the police are so MILITARY that even the Coast Guard looks LESS intimidating aggressive than they are… and it IS A MILITARY BRANCH!
People keep talking about body cameras and
How about we simply go back to training the police to be a CIVILIAN force. A force dedicated to protecting the PEOPLE and not THE STATE.
I had a cop buddy who never drew his firearm once in all his years on the force. He said he never really had to. He was taught that being a cop wasn’t about intimidating people and looking for criminals.
It was simply about solving problems. Most “criminals” today aren’t bad people. They just need a better solution.
Most “crimes” today don’t even have victims per se. Who exactly is harmed if I let my car idle for more than 3 minutes in the driveway on a cold day? Yet it’s against the law.
Who is harmed by ME not wearing a seat belt? Only ME if I get in an accident.
Who is harmed by a guy selling untaxed cigarettes and skipping state tobacco taxes?
Just the State. That’s all. A misdeed sure. A fee perhaps for not paying taxes. I get that.
However, to be a CRIME by the definition of the word you must have a VICTIM. A PERSON must be harmed. Otherwise its not a CRIME by the very meaning of the word.
There ARE bad criminals out there. Murderers, rapists, etc. They have always been out there. They will probably always BE out there.
Yes, we want the cops to go get them. We want them brought to justice. We want to protect the people.
However, they have never been a large part of the population. One percent? Maybe? At most? Of those “criminals” most aren’t even violent… pickpockets, check fraud, etc. So the actual violent criminals are a teeny tiny minority.
Why must the other 99% be treated LIKE criminals just because of that tiny amount of wrongdoers? Why do we need more tanks and machine guns than many COUNTRIES have in our POLICE FORCES?
It’s cost ineffective.
Instead of letting this “pro cop” vs “anti cop” and overblown racist crap divide us, how about we look at what we AGREE on. I’m not “anti cop” by any means, but I’m “anti-cops-in-tanks.” There’s no reason for that.
I’m against the militarized, hyper suspect policing we get today. It doesn’t work against crime as well as the experts think. I can tell you that from serving overseas.
When the patrols went out loaded for bear, the locals HATED them for acting like they were the enemy. When they went out lighter (“soft caps” instead of helmets, no body army, machine guns raised and/or not locked and loaded) they relaxed and approached our troops. They COOPERATED with us. They turned over bad guys and weapons caches. They even put a few of the bad guys in the river ala “Mafia” style.
This was THEIR town, not the terrorists’s town and not the Americans’ town. Want to help them as friends, then so be it. Want to treat them like an occupied enemy, then they’d treat that accordingly as well.
Besides, even if that brutal brand of policing DID work, would you want to pay that price? Even if police were 100% effective, would it be worth it to live in a Nazi/Stalinist police state? Would you seriously make that tradeoff of freedom for safety?