Author Topic: Playing Soldier in the Suburbs by Ross Douthat  (Read 484 times)

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Playing Soldier in the Suburbs by Ross Douthat
« on: August 16, 2014, 07:02:49 PM »

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Offline MACVSOG68

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Re: Playing Soldier in the Suburbs by Ross Douthat
« Reply #1 on: August 16, 2014, 07:11:12 PM »
Quote
Time to take their toys away.

It's funny (not really), but when the left says the same thing about guns in the hands of citizens, we push back with a vengeance, telling them its not the guns, but going after those who misuse them.  And I agree with that completely.  Yet we seem to say that it's the 'toys' that are causing all the chaos with respect to the police.  Why don't we use the same logic?
 
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Offline Oceander

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Re: Playing Soldier in the Suburbs by Ross Douthat
« Reply #2 on: August 16, 2014, 07:17:17 PM »
It's funny (not really), but when the left says the same thing about guns in the hands of citizens, we push back with a vengeance, telling them its not the guns, but going after those who misuse them.  And I agree with that completely.  Yet we seem to say that it's the 'toys' that are causing all the chaos with respect to the police.  Why don't we use the same logic?
 


Actually, the same logic can be applied:  those with known issues, like a record of violent criminal conduct, should have their right to own/possess firearms restricted.  Cops clearly have "issues" with using military-grade weaponry; accordingly, their right to own/possess that weaponry should be restricted.  It isn't political bias to recognize that Sheriff Taylor had a very good reason for limiting Deputy Barney Fife to one bullet that he had to carry in his pocket, not in his revolver.

Offline MACVSOG68

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Re: Playing Soldier in the Suburbs by Ross Douthat
« Reply #3 on: August 16, 2014, 07:38:58 PM »

Actually, the same logic can be applied:  those with known issues, like a record of violent criminal conduct, should have their right to own/possess firearms restricted.  Cops clearly have "issues" with using military-grade weaponry; accordingly, their right to own/possess that weaponry should be restricted.  It isn't political bias to recognize that Sheriff Taylor had a very good reason for limiting Deputy Barney Fife to one bullet that he had to carry in his pocket, not in his revolver.

Some cops, just like some people.  Point is when guns are abused, the left fights to have all of them restricted.  Perhaps some of the military equipment is going overboard, but I believe a police force needs at least the same level of weaponry as the bad guys, and any abuse by the police should be prosecuted to the fullest.  Training is essential no less than it is in the military, and good leadership is even more necessary.
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Offline Oceander

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Re: Playing Soldier in the Suburbs by Ross Douthat
« Reply #4 on: August 16, 2014, 10:11:00 PM »
Some cops, just like some people.  Point is when guns are abused, the left fights to have all of them restricted.  Perhaps some of the military equipment is going overboard, but I believe a police force needs at least the same level of weaponry as the bad guys, and any abuse by the police should be prosecuted to the fullest.  Training is essential no less than it is in the military, and good leadership is even more necessary.

Here's the trouble:  abuse by the police is almost never prosecuted, it is the exception to the rule, the vanishingly small exception, to the rule that cops don't get prosecuted for abuse.  Neither do ADAs.  The watchmen cannot be trusted beyond a certain point; that is simply a fact of life.

Offline olde north church

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Re: Playing Soldier in the Suburbs by Ross Douthat
« Reply #5 on: August 16, 2014, 10:38:54 PM »
Did you ever wonder why members of the military are generally respected while LEOs are generally despised?
Why?  Well, because I'm a bastard, that's why.

Offline MACVSOG68

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Re: Playing Soldier in the Suburbs by Ross Douthat
« Reply #6 on: August 16, 2014, 10:56:19 PM »
Here's the trouble:  abuse by the police is almost never prosecuted, it is the exception to the rule, the vanishingly small exception, to the rule that cops don't get prosecuted for abuse.  Neither do ADAs.  The watchmen cannot be trusted beyond a certain point; that is simply a fact of life.

As I said, abuse should be prosecuted.  And, there should be effective civilian oversight.  But when the bad guys are better armed than the police, who do the citizens look to?  Violent crime in the country has been decreasing each year.  I can't link cause and effect, but two things have increased during that same period, private gun ownership and better armed and trained police.
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Offline MACVSOG68

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Re: Playing Soldier in the Suburbs by Ross Douthat
« Reply #7 on: August 16, 2014, 11:17:32 PM »
Did you ever wonder why members of the military are generally respected while LEOs are generally despised?

There are around 12 million arrests and 41million traffic citations annually in the US.  Add to that interaction the publicity associated with police abuse allegations and it wouldn't surprise me.  And I think abuses in the military aren't as quickly 'broad brushed' over the entire military as police abuses.  Perhaps one other characteristic is that like other public services, the police are simply taken for granted while military operations aren't.  But I continue to insist that LEOs have a higher standard to uphold the laws in spite of the daily dangers associated with the job.
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Offline olde north church

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Re: Playing Soldier in the Suburbs by Ross Douthat
« Reply #8 on: August 17, 2014, 05:52:40 AM »
There are around 12 million arrests and 41million traffic citations annually in the US.  Add to that interaction the publicity associated with police abuse allegations and it wouldn't surprise me.  And I think abuses in the military aren't as quickly 'broad brushed' over the entire military as police abuses.  Perhaps one other characteristic is that like other public services, the police are simply taken for granted while military operations aren't.  But I continue to insist that LEOs have a higher standard to uphold the laws in spite of the daily dangers associated with the job.

I was just thinking people know when military "break rules" they are swiftly and justly punished.  LEOs are rarely.  The public perception, most get away with anything, from lifting apples on the beat to murdering wives.
Why?  Well, because I'm a bastard, that's why.

Offline MACVSOG68

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Re: Playing Soldier in the Suburbs by Ross Douthat
« Reply #9 on: August 17, 2014, 09:44:15 AM »
I was just thinking people know when military "break rules" they are swiftly and justly punished.  LEOs are rarely.  The public perception, most get away with anything, from lifting apples on the beat to murdering wives.

Remember, part of that public perception comes from Hollywood.  Police abuse has been a theme in numerous television shows and movies as far back as I can remember, which these days doesn't seem that long...

No doubt people have a more favorable view of the military (except when I came home), and the interaction here with military personnel is almost always favorable.  In Afghanistan today and Iraq earlier however, our military is not so favorably viewed.  One article describing Afghan attitudes toward our military concluded: "At best we have come to be seen as weak and incompetent, at worst, as enemies and invaders".

As for the police, we have to start with the proposition that an effective police force is an imperative not an option.  While little can be done to change the negative nature of most of the interaction between police and citizenry, some steps can and should be taken.  Always at the top of the list is an independent civilian review board whose members have no relationships within the force.  Then while ensuring no civil rights violations, a timely and effective investigation and prosecution if warranted of all complaints or other evidence of abuse.

Move the police around from shift to shift occasionally.  In larger jurisdictions move officers into other precincts.  Always follow up on complaints.  Ensure that press and those with cameras are permitted on the scene so long as they remain clear of a crime scene and do not interfere with officers.  But understand that clips and pictures can be edited.  Continual training is always essential, not only in tactics, but with emphasis on the concept of reasonable force.

Whenever possible, facilitate positive interaction, in schools, community events, playgrounds etc.

Rules of engagement are important but should always, within reason,  favor the law.
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