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Annals of Police Militarization: Something In The Air

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Annals of Police Militarization: Something In The Air

Well, here’s another example of the ‘militarization of police.’ As usual, it sounds pretty bad. Or at least, it’s made to sound bad. Armed officers swarming out of the woods to perform compliance checks on water quality? Squad size elements moving around with ‘POLICE’ across the back of their jackets, except they work for the EPA? Doesn’t make much sense to me . . .

Look at the specifics of the article, though, and read between the lines just a little bit. They’re talking about water quality at mining sites, which are known for horrible environmental problems when run poorly. So I suppose, they actually have a reason to be out there.

The feeling I get, though, is that in the past, they sent one or two unarmed agents (not sure what the job title is, doubt it’s special agent, FBI style), who announced themselves on arrival and stated their purpose in being there.Contrast that to the new model, up to eight armed and armored men wearing uniforms marked POLICE. The impression you get is that they were a lot less polite than before, as the article uses words like ‘storming,’ and ‘swarming.’ It’s also called a ‘massive show of intimidation,’ which compared to the old model sounds unfortunately, exactly right.

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