Police State

Militarized Police Respond to Crisis in Missouri

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As you may already know, protests, riots and looting have been reported in the aftermath of the alleged shooting of an unarmed man by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri. Business Insider recently ran a concerning report about this crisis. It details how the police are using the same gear that troops in Afghanistan have used.

According to the report, the police are wearing body armor. They have 5.56-mm rifles based on the M4 carbine with scopes that can hit a target 500 meters out. They’re armed with pistols on their sides and carrying at least four to six additional magazines containing 30 rounds each.

As Business Insider points out, their uniforms could be mistaken for military uniforms if they didn’t have “Police” patches. A photo in the report shows officers wearing camouflage. Some are standing in front of a Bearcat, which is similar in appearance to an MRAP. Two are on top of it.

The author of the article, a former Marine, says he asked why “these cops need MARPAT camo pants again” on Twitter. A follower, who said he served in the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division, replied that they “rolled lighter than that in an actual warzone.”

What do you think? Does the crisis in Ferguson call for this type of response? Are law enforcement personnel handling this situation too aggressively? Has police militarization gotten out of control?