Thursday, April 10, 2014

Local Control

Some people express concern about the "militarization" of police.  I too am concerned about that.  Police are there to "protect and serve" the public, not as instruments of oppression.  The police are there to maintain order and to enforce the law.

Part of the problem is that local and state politicians are giving up more and more local control of law enforcement.  They are taking state and federal money to pay for officers, equipment, and activities that used to be paid for out of state and local taxes.  I am opposed to federal money being used by local law enforcement.  Certainly the transfer of surplus federal government equipments, vehicles, armored cars, desks, chairs or any other physical property is fine, but there should be no strings attached.

Too often these items and money come with strings.  They require certain hiring requirements.  They want certain procedures to be followed or special enforcement to be done with the money. The federal government should not be dictating how local law enforcement works.  Law enforcement should represent their local government, under local control.  If you don't like what your local police do, then you should be able to go to a city council meeting and complain.  You should not have  to write a letter to Washington.  It's another bulwark of too much government power and overreach; that's what the SGT Says.

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