August 23, 2014 by David K. Sutton
Do Most Americans Agree That Police Militarization Is Over-The-Top?
Does a small Massachusetts police force, in a town of 10,000, need two M16’s (noted by MSNBC’s Steve Kornacki)? Do any small town (or even large city) police departments around the country need grenade launchers? How about tanks? Do most Americans agree that police militarization is over-the-top? Or, as I suspect is the case, are most Americans fine with a continued erosion of civil liberties in the name of public safety?
Maybe a more important question is this: Have we given up on our centuries old legal tradition of presumption of innocence? Is it all right for police departments to raid someone’s home, shoot his dog, and terrorize his family, because they got a tip that a large stash of marijuana was present? Is there not a safer way to deal with a situation like this? How is this not escalation on the part of the police?
And to ask the obvious racial question, in the scene described above, what color skin do you think the “suspect” has? There’s a pretty good chance if you are white, in your mind your saw the “suspect” as a black guy. How much does this bias play a role in our clear acceptance of police state militarization?