Police Department or Militant Cabal?

In the 13 years since the events of 9/11, police departments across America, from large cities to small towns, are increasingly resembling military personnel in Iraq, not the friendly neighborhood police force they should be. I mean, what the hell are small town police forces doing with MRAP (Mine-resistant ambush protected) vehicles anyway? Yes, they’ve got ’em. While we were busy worrying about our personal finances and holding on to our jobs, the police slogan “to protect and serve” was beaten over the head and dragged through the streets until it resembled something more like “to harm and harass.” And the constitutional rights of citizens and journalists are in jeopardy when the police decide they need to use force, which it seems is happening with greater frequency. Police departments are using violent force in response to events and protests, force that is not justified or equal to the facts on the ground. Is this really the land of the free? Or is this just a continuation of a shared experience of minorities in this country, since it’s founding, that now knows no racial border? Are white guys like me simply waking up to a reality that has long existed in this country for racial minorities? But even if that is true, I still feel as if something has shifted for the worse when we decided as a country to militarize our police forces in the aftermath of 9/11.

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