ACLU Launches Nationwide Police Militarization Investigation

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The ACLU is behind on this one. It doesn’t take too much looking the last few years to see this happening all over with DHS donating military equipment to local police forces. From the Huffington Post.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has launched a nationwide campaign to assess police militarization in the United States. Starting Wednesday, ACLU affiliates in 23 states are sending open records requests to hundreds of state and local police agencies requesting information about their SWAT teams, such as how often and for what reasons they’re deployed, what types of weapons they use, how often citizens are injured during SWAT raids, and how they’re funded. More affiliates may join the effort in the coming weeks.

Additionally, the affiliates will ask for information about drones, GPS tracking devices, how much military equipment the police agencies have obtained through programs run through the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security, and how often and for what purpose state National Guards are participating in enforcement of drug laws.

“We’ve known for a while now that American neighborhoods are increasingly being policed by cops armed with the weapons and tactics of war,” said Kara Dansky, senior counsel at the ACLU’s Center for Justice, which is coordinating the investigation. “The aim of this investigation is to find out just how pervasive this is, and to what extent federal funding is incentivizing this trend.”

The militarization of America’s police forces has been going on for about a generation now. Former Los Angeles Police Chief Daryl Gates first conceived the idea of the SWAT team in the late 1960s, in response to the Watts riots and a few mass shooting incidents for which he thought the police were unprepared. Gates wanted an elite team of specialized cops similar to groups like the Army Rangers or Navy SEALs that could respond to riots, barricades, shootouts, or hostage-takings with more skill and precision than everyday patrol officers.

The concept caught on, particularly after a couple of high-profile, televised confrontations between Gates’ SWAT team and a Black Panther holdout in 1969, and then with the Symbionese Liberation Army in 1973. Given the rioting, protests, and general social unrest of the time, Gates’ idea quickly grew popular in law enforcement circles, particularly in cities worried about rioting and domestic terrorism.

From Gates’ lone team in LA, according to a New York Times investigation, the number of SWAT teams in the U.S. grew to 500 by 1975. By 1982, nearly 60 percent of American cities with 50,000 or more people had a SWAT team.

Throughout those early years, SWAT teams were generally used as Gates had intended. They deployed when there was a suspect, gunman or escaped fugitive who posed an immediate threat to the public, using force to defuse an already violent situation.

By 1995, however, nearly 90 percent of cities with 50,000 or more people had a SWAT team — and many had several, according to Peter Kraska, a criminologist at Eastern Kentucky University, who in the late 1990s conducted two highly publicized surveys of police departments across the country, and a follow-up survey several years later. Even in smaller towns — municipalities with 25,000 to 50,000 people — Kraska found that the number of SWAT teams increased by more than 300 percent between 1984 and 1995. By 2000, 75 percent of those towns also had their own SWAT team.

Kraska estimates that total number of SWAT raids in America jumped from just a few hundred per year in the 1970s, to a few thousand by the early 1980s, to around 50,000 by the mid-2000s.

The vast majority of those raids are to serve warrants on people suspected of nonviolent drug crimes. Police forces were no longer reserving SWAT teams and paramilitary tactics for events that presented an immediate threat to the public. They were now using them mostly as an investigative tool in drug cases, creating violent confrontations with people suspected of nonviolent, consensual crimes.

Will The Explosion of the Oil Rig in the Gulf Be Used for Government Takeover of Oil

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Here is an interesting observation by talk show host Mark Levin. Obama is sending “SWAT” teams to all the oil rigs in the Gulf, all of them. Mark Levin served in the Reagan administration as Deputy Solicitor of the Interior Dept., in the number two position and he says, “I never knew the department of the interior had armed SWAT teams” Mark Levin has slammed President Obama’s bizarre announcement that he will be sending SWAT teams to deal with the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, alleging that the response is part of a plan to grease the skids for government takeover and nationalization of the oil industry. Who knows after all the takeovers this administration has already done under the guise of “saving” the businesses.


Team Obama Calls Out Swat Team on Tea Party Patriots

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The SWAT Team was called in today at the Quincy Tea Party Rally. Obama was speaking at the convention center this afternoon. As you can see by the pictures below, these Quincy Tea Partiers looked very threatening and I can’t blame them for calling in a SWAT Team. This is unbelievable !

They didn’t want any violence from these threatening protesters.

In Full Riot Gear!!

They were singing “God Bless America” …A sure sign of violence.

They were worried about violence.

Big Government.com

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