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The Militarization of Police on Display in Ferguson, Missouri

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Published on: August 13, 2014

Pay close attention my fellow Americans and you will see who the real insurgents are determined to be by our government. The riots in Ferguson, Missouri this week have been widely reported. However, what has escaped much of the coverage is the militarization of the police there.

Following the police-involved shooting of eighteen year old Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, the community fell into an almost complete state of anarchy with looting and rioting taking place in the streets.

Many articles focused on the riots and looting, even questioning how the entire incident unfolded. Yet, what many people have not focused on is the police presence. Instead of peace officers, the police looked more like soldiers clad in military-style uniforms, fully armed driving armored vehicles.

Here are a few of the photos which depict the police appearing like they are in a war zone rather than a community in Missouri.


Business Insider’s Paul Szoldra, a former Marine, said that the events in Ferguson depict a “terrifying” result of the militarization of the police, only it is the American people who are being treated like insurgents in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Szoldra writes:

While serving as a U.S. Marine on patrol in Afghanistan, we wore desert camouflage to blend in with our surroundings, carried rifles to shoot back when under enemy attack, and drove around in armored vehicles to ward off roadside bombs.

We looked intimidating, but all of our vehicles and equipment had a clear purpose for combat against enemy forces. So why is this same gear being used on our city streets?


Their uniform would be mistaken for a soldier’s if it weren’t for their “Police” patches. They wear green tops, and pants fashioned after the U.S. Marine Corps MARPAT camouflage pattern. And they stand in front of a massive uparmored truck called a Bearcat, similar in look to a mine-resistant ambush protected vehicle, or as the troops who rode in them call it, the MRAP.

“Why do these cops need MARPAT camo pants again,” I asked on Twitter this morning. One of the most interesting responses came from a follower who says he served in the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division: “We rolled lighter than that in an actual warzone.”

He added, “In Afghanistan, we patrolled in big, armored trucks. We wore uniforms that conveyed the message, ‘We are a military force and we are in control right now.’ Many Afghans saw us as occupiers. And now we see some of our police officers in this same way. If there’s one thing I learned in Afghanistan, it’s this: You can’t win someone’s heart and mind when you are pointing a rifle at their chest.”

The Guardian reported, “Officers in military-style uniforms, some carrying high-powered rifles and wearing balaclavas, formed a line at least two men deep and blocking the entire width of Florrisant Street.”

Several civilians were noted to have red lasers pointed at their chest from automatic weapons…

…as others were hit with rubber bullets and crowds were dispersed with tear gas.

While law and order must be restored, this seems way out of place for today’s police departments to be treating ordinary citizens like this. This is why they are being armed by the federal government and militarized. Eventually, once the people are used to it, it will become more common place. There is no denying it.

As John Whitehead wrote in a recent article, “In the absence of crime, in order to keep the police and their related agencies employed, occupied, and utilizing the many militarized “toys” passed along by the Department of Homeland Security, one must invent new crimes—overcriminalization—and new criminals to be spied on, targeted, tracked, raided, arrested, prosecuted and jailed. Enter the police state.”

Make no mistake, once things are fully in place, these local police departments will be swallowed up into a domestic army, which is why we need to support educating our police officers on their duty to the Constitution and to the people, not a tyrannical government. It’s also why we need to cut the money and goodie string ties from the federal government to local authorities.

This is merely a show of force, not peace keeping. There is no war going on here in America, except government against the people it governs. If the people were committing crimes, which some were, then there are laws that need to be enforced. However, if you will recall, we covered at least two businesses that didn’t need the police. Why? Because they were armed to the teeth under the protections of the Second Amendment. Americans would be just fine to defend themselves if government would stop being our nanny and simply enforce the law, which they are charged to do.

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