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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
wccountryboy started a thread entitled, "The role of select-fire in Law Enforcement patrol rifles" found here:http://forums.1911forum.com/showthread.php?t=436675

This thread is to run in parallel to wcountryboy's, as there is no intent to pollute his thread with the content, if any, of this thread.

Question:
Isn't the adoption of Select Fire/Full Auto into the LE community more a result of the want/willingness to emulate Military weapons and tactics, as opposed to a true need for Select Fire/Full Auto in the public environment?

A couple of times a year I see debates on the very subject of incorporating military weapons/tactics, and the overuse of same in the general public environment

As fodder for this topic, I offer this:
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/04/s...e-become-militarized.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

http://universalfreepress.com/milit...cles-huge-training-exercise-starts-this-week/

http://www.examiner.com/article/why-do-local-police-forces-need-military-style-armored-vehicles


This would be the first response to this topic, taken from "The role of select-fire in Law Enforcement patrol rifles":
Buck3117 said:
Under SWAT conditions, the situations change, but in my experience, outside a terrorist shooting assault type of attack, SWAT situations can also be handled with semi auto weapons.

Finally, I know it was said it would be a different thread, but it kind of irritates me. The comments about LEO's wanting to emulate the military is ridiculous. The military tactics in some situations save lives. Violence of action in SWAT situations saves lives. In patrol situations where a school shooting is taking place, violence of action saves lives. It has nothing to do with wanting to pattern after the military, but some of those tactics work and are applicable to some of our duties.

I don't want to cause issues, but these are my opinions and if I pi$$ anybody off I apologize.
I hope Buck has no issues with bringing his comments here.

And no pi$$ing people off here. This is a discussion subject only.
 

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Having read several books written by officers on SWAT teams, and having a son-in-law that is on a SWAT team, I firmly believe the use of select fire weapons by SWAT teams is a matter of being prepared for what ever the incident needs. I would be more than greatly surprised if even a single digit percentage of the SWAT officers are or have ever thought of emulating the military.

Part of that is from the fact that anyone that can walk and chew gum at the same time can get into the military. That does not mean that the military is full of low end mentality, but that their process/procedures are geared to accommodate at least some of those individuals.

SWAT, on the other hand, is staffed by above average intelligence people that have proven they are capable of clear, concise thought and actions. Are there exceptions? No doubt, but the process/procedures are geared to a much higher level than the military must use.
 

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I pretty much agree with Buck3117; tactics are tactics. Other than employing suppressive fires, they are interchangable between a military and LE setting. I have no issue with SWAT or special purpose teams being appropriatly equipped when performing those duties.

What bothers me the most is the general militarization of the rank and file LEOs. Officer Friendly seems to have been replaced in many areas with RoboCop. When an officer steps out of a patrol car, I expect to see a crisp uniform and shiny badge of office. More and more, I see wrinkled 5.11s, bloused combat boots, and a psudo-tactical load bearing vest with SAPI plates and subdued patches. Or, just as bad, the 'casual' look: same 5.11 trousers, polo shirt and duty belt.... Overall, this only serves to create a larger divide between the LEOs and the communities they are supposed to serve and makes their job MORE difficult and dangerous.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
I pretty much agree with Buck3117; tactics are tactics. Other than employing suppressive fires, they are interchangable between a military and LE setting. I have no issue with SWAT or special purpose teams being appropriatly equipped when performing those duties.

What bothers me the most is the general militarization of the rank and file LEOs. Officer Friendly seems to have been replaced in many areas with RoboCop. When an officer steps out of a patrol car, I expect to see a crisp uniform and shiny badge of office. More and more, I see wrinkled 5.11s, bloused combat boots, and a psudo-tactical load bearing vest with SAPI plates and subdued patches. Or, just as bad, the 'casual' look: same 5.11 trousers, polo shirt and duty belt.... Overall, this only serves to create a larger divide between the LEOs and the communities they are supposed to serve and makes their job MORE difficult and dangerous.
This is EXACTLY the point I was trying to make/discuss.

Thanks for the added clarity
 

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What your average patrol officer should look like:



What your average police officer should NOT look like:



What your average police officer should DEFINITELY not look like, unless they are SWAT:

 

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I'll chime in with my views. Before that I will say that I have been a full-time LEO for the past 21 years, during that time I have worked in our Warrant Execution Section, served on a Federal Task Force (USMS) and been in CID for the last 6 years. I have never been assigned to Patrol or Traffic duties. I am a firearms instructor for my department, SWAT trained and was partly responsible for our rifle policy and I am a veteran also. I think that most people have it a little backwards when comparing cops to soldiers. 10 or more years ago a large majority of LEO's had previously been in the military, as you go back further the percentage increases. Those officer who had been in the military preferred the uniform with pin on badge, nametag etc. They felt it was a distinct uniform that identified them for what they were professional LEO's. During the past 10-15 years duties of LEO's have changed somewhat, we now have K9 officers, Commercial Vehicle Officers, SWAT officers that are assigned to other duties etc. We also have a group of younger officers who were raised wearing their pants below their ass and generally dressing in a more casual manner. These officers see those officers whose job require them to wear a uniform that doesn't require the time and attention as a traditional LEO uniform and start talking to their labor groups, supervisors etc to get that option. And then like so many other things in this great job the administration realizes they can save $5.00 per uniform per officer and you have officers running around in BDU's. While I prefer the traditional uniform over the BDU type uniform I see the attraction of it. Kind of funny thing is that my supervisor believes that all Detectives should wear a coat and tie everyday no matter what. I think we are one of the last Departments doing this in our part of the state. I would prefer that we be giving the opportunity to dress business casual, suits and ties are costly. Both this post and the one about select fire versus semi auto should be enlightening to some. As I said in the other post I am a strong believer in the patrol rifle, I think it adds an ability to a officer that isn't filled with a pistol or shotgun. Of course I'm not the smartest person either I carry an all steel pistol (1911) and a revolver as a BUG (J-frame) even sitting in my desk as a detective...
 

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I think a smooth bore musket and a cap and ball pistol is all 99.99999% of them need.


The militarization of the police has gone way to far and even a Swat Team should not look like the jokers in the last picture above.
 

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Those officer who had been in the military preferred the uniform with pin on badge, nametag etc. They felt it was a distinct uniform that identified them for what they were professional LEO's. During the past 10-15 years duties of LEO's have changed somewhat, we now have K9 officers, Commercial Vehicle Officers, SWAT officers that are assigned to other duties etc. We also have a group of younger officers who were raised wearing their pants below their ass and generally dressing in a more casual manner. These officers see those officers whose job require them to wear a uniform that doesn't require the time and attention as a traditional LEO uniform and start talking to their labor groups, supervisors etc to get that option.
What I marked in red font is very important: LE should be a PROFESSION. If you wish to be treated and respected as a PROFESSIONAL, you must behave and act accordingly, to include your manner of dress.

The second part that I marked in bold font is the problem. The newer generation of LEOs are simply too lazy to deal with a proper police uniform that must be pressed; its easier to dress like a slob... and then complain that you're not respected in your community. Some of the blame lies with the admin for permitting it.

In my opinion, a uniform is just that, uniform. Any options or variables should be kept to a bare minimum. Once you approve the entire LA Police Gear catalog for wear, you cease to have uniformed officers.
 

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No offense to anybody, but note the number of private gun owners who keep a full-house AR with optics, light, lasers, and full-cap mags for home defense. Why is that? Well, because if somebody breaks in your house at 4am and tries to terrorize your family you want to make damn sure you're at least as well-armed as they are if not better. Today's LEOs are the same way. The patrol cop in parallax's first pic may look the part of a humble public servant, but he's going to be in serious trouble if he encounters a couple of highly-armed meth heads in the vehicle he pulls over. I have a right to make sure I'm well-armed enough to protect my family, and he has the same right to have whatever equipment he feels he needs to protect both himself and the public.
 

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What I marked in red font is very important: LE should be a PROFESSION. If you wish to be treated and respected as a PROFESSIONAL, you must behave and act accordingly, to include your manner of dress.

The second part that I marked in bold font is the problem. The newer generation of LEOs are simply too lazy to deal with a proper police uniform that must be pressed; its easier to dress like a slob... and then complain that you're not respected in your community. Some of the blame lies with the admin for permitting it.

In my opinion, a uniform is just that, uniform. Any options or variables should be kept to a bare minimum. Once you approve the entire LA Police Gear catalog for wear, you cease to have uniformed officers.
I'm not disagreeing with anything you have said and I am humbled that I have been fortunate enough to be a cop. I consider it a calling not a profession, sorry to disappoint you. Anybody can have a profession but not everyone can be a cop, I'm not saying this to make me an elitist or anything but I've seen my fair share of people who thought they could do the job and they realized they couldn't. We all think we can do anything but I assure there are parts of my job that most people wouldn't want to do. With that said I consider myself a professional and try daily to improve how I work. Maybe I'm from a different generation than a lot of cops but I assure you even in BDU's the majority of LEO's are professional. As you judge us keep in mind that unlike television shows we are just normal people who happen to be cops. If we've done this job for awhile we know it's a calling and not a profession. If you are ever in Dallas I would be more than willing to show you what I mean either in real life or maybe we should just look at some pictures..
 

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I've worn the bdu with the embroidered badge and the polyester getup with the hat. The bdu uniforms are way more comfortable, but feel sloppy. My favorite compromise was the blauer cotton class A looking uniforms. If you are uniformed patrol, when you get out of the car, that's the first impression people get of who they're about to be dealing with. Personally, I want people seeing that my stuff is squared away, and not something I threw on running out the door.
 

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No offense to anybody, but note the number of private gun owners who keep a full-house AR with optics, light, lasers, and full-cap mags for home defense. Why is that? Well, because if somebody breaks in your house at 4am and tries to terrorize your family you want to make damn sure you're at least as well-armed as they are if not better. Today's LEOs are the same way. The patrol cop in parallax's first pic may look the part of a humble public servant, but he's going to be in serious trouble if he encounters a couple of highly-armed meth heads in the vehicle he pulls over. I have a right to make sure I'm well-armed enough to protect my family, and he has the same right to have whatever equipment he feels he needs to protect both himself and the public.
That's the best argument for pseudo-militarization of the LEOs I've heard yet. All too often we are comfortable arguing that we, civilians with the right to bear arms, have the right to own and use whatever weapon the average foot soldier carries. Why not LEOs? They're more likely to find themselves in a situation where having a military load out would save their (or others) lives. Not to mention, they're no less citizens of the USA than, well, citizens are.

I myself think it comes down to the very same argument used for gun rights. The firearm/vest/magazine/ammunition doesn't mean squat. What makes all the difference is the mentality and the intent of the person wielding those items. Just like the kid with the AirSoft AK and the deputy shooting him. I read a lot of good arguments on both sides of that (even though they were all speculation), but it stands to reason that if the cops had taken a few moments to assess the situation more thoroughly, it might not have happened. It also stands to reason that those few extra moments could have endangered their lives. The question is, would it have endangered their lives needlessly? If shooting a teen could have been prevented, I don't think it would have been 'needlessly'.

Basically what I'm saying is, I don't think it matters if LEOs gear up like the cops in the third picture or not, but their attitudes should "look like" the cop in the first picture. Tac your LEOs out as much as you want, just don't forget to teach them respect for law-abiding citizens.
 

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I pretty much agree with Buck3117; tactics are tactics. Other than employing suppressive fires, they are interchangable between a military and LE setting. I have no issue with SWAT or special purpose teams being appropriatly equipped when performing those duties.

What bothers me the most is the general militarization of the rank and file LEOs. Officer Friendly seems to have been replaced in many areas with RoboCop. When an officer steps out of a patrol car, I expect to see a crisp uniform and shiny badge of office. More and more, I see wrinkled 5.11s, bloused combat boots, and a psudo-tactical load bearing vest with SAPI plates and subdued patches. Or, just as bad, the 'casual' look: same 5.11 trousers, polo shirt and duty belt.... Overall, this only serves to create a larger divide between the LEOs and the communities they are supposed to serve and makes their job MORE difficult and dangerous.
There seems to be more and more stories of Cops using excessive force. It might be just because of all the Videos that are posted these days...Additionally, what troubles me is that the Police can be armed to the teeth, whereas, in most states civilians can't. There should be armament parity btwn the police and civilians. If Cops need this gear to protect them; civilians should have the (option) to acquire it also. Part of 2A is the balance of power btwn the state and civilians. Cops are indeed agents of the state, and take orders from the state/politicians. This imbalance of power is another force against individual rights. A troubling example of this is when civilians were disarmed during the aftermath of Katrina. The Police went house to house.

http://www.cfif.org/htdocs/freedoml...Disarming-Law-Abiding-Americans-Disaster.html
 

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What I marked in red font is very important: LE should be a PROFESSION. If you wish to be treated and respected as a PROFESSIONAL, you must behave and act accordingly, to include your manner of dress.

The second part that I marked in bold font is the problem. The newer generation of LEOs are simply too lazy to deal with a proper police uniform that must be pressed; its easier to dress like a slob... and then complain that you're not respected in your community. Some of the blame lies with the admin for permitting it.

In my opinion, a uniform is just that, uniform. Any options or variables should be kept to a bare minimum. Once you approve the entire LA Police Gear catalog for wear, you cease to have uniformed officers.
Admin permitting uniform wear? What world do you live in? My God, can you possibly paint the subject with a more ignorant and broader brush? Admin dictates uniform requirements, they don't suggest it. Those unprofessional uniforms you hate are mandated by the department for one reason alone: cost. Uniform costs continue to rise (along with declining quality) and budgets continue to shrink. More has to be done with less. Those uniforms are cheaper and the lack of needed dry cleaner makes them cheaper to maintain. For the record: I don't like them and I'm glad I don't wear them, but I recognize the practical considerations involved.

Load bearing vests are becoming increasingly popular for another reason: officer health. Many departments are getting tired of paying out medical retirements to officers with back problems. This is particularly true with female officers due to their physical make up. No, I don't like the way they look any more than you do but the practicalities can't be denied. Get out from behind the keyboard and strap one on, then spend a few years in a patrol car and you'll see what I mean.

A thread of mine was recently locked for this stated reason:
We don't tolerate cop bashing here at 1911Forum.com nor, do we tolerate Police Officers referring to citizens as "D-bags" or "POS".
I find this to be a false statement. Cop bashing occurs here on a daily basis without moderation. In fact, much of the commentary posted here makes me doubt my decision to protect and serve you for the last twenty years. In short, you make me sick to my stomach and I'm out of here.
 

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No offense to anybody, but note the number of private gun owners who keep a full-house AR with optics, light, lasers, and full-cap mags for home defense. Why is that?
There is a difference between a private citizen with a constitutional right and the JOB of public servant, whose paycheck is paid by the taxpayers.

There is the other part of this... the penalty for misconduct is FAR more severe for a citizen than a police officer. You screw up with your tacticool AR and you might be doing hard time... not getting fired from your job.
 

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40 years ago the question was "Do Police Officers need shotguns?" Same answer, Yes. Are they military wanna be's, some maybe. Military weapons were made available to law enforcement, they bought them. SWAT trains side-by-side with some military units. Trainers for Law Enforcement have a military background. Military tactics work - well maybe not house clearing using grenades. On the other side, some SWAT training and tactics are used by the military. Does every police officer need a select fire weapon - No. Even the military realizes auto weapons are best used against mass assualts.
 

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You also have to address the issue of having this type of equipment and tactics and how it takes away private citizens rights, either voluntarily or by force.

How do you think it would go over if you lived in Boston and told the officers the terrorist is not in your house, and they can not enter without a warrant? My guess is that most people there bent over let them in because the mindset, the equipment (machine guns and armored cars), and the shear number of boots on the ground scared the hell out of the average person.
 

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There is a difference between a private citizen with a constitutional right and the JOB of public servant, whose paycheck is paid by the taxpayers.
...despite the fact that the LEO is much more likely to be shot at by a perp at some point in his life? The logic is the same. Both cops and law-abiding gun owners are supposed to be on the same side, and both are just as likely to be outgunned by violent criminals if some dimwit politician decides what sort of gear they should be allowed to protect themselves with.
 

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There seems to be more and more stories of Cops using excessive force. It might be just because of all the Videos that are posted these days...Additionally, what troubles me is that the Police can be armed to the teeth, whereas, in most states civilians can't. There should be armament parity btwn the police and civilians. If Cops need this gear to protect them; civilians should have the (option) to acquire it also. Part of 2A is the balance of power btwn the state and civilians. Cops are indeed agents of the state, and take orders from the state/politicians. This imbalance of power is another force against individual rights. A troubling example of this is when civilians were disarmed during the aftermath of Katrina. The Police went house to house.

http://www.cfif.org/htdocs/freedoml...Disarming-Law-Abiding-Americans-Disaster.html
And here we go with the why cant I have the same thing argument. Well I assure you unless you are a MMA fighter, Boxer or Cop I have had my ass handed to me several times after reaching the age where you should know better, part of the job. I have had various weapons pointed at me to include a SKS and I have been involved in a OIS. I've pointed out at least once before everything I own you to can own, if you want a silencer get a tax stamp, if you want a select fire weapon get a tax stamp if you live in a state that violates the 2nd amendment move or vote to make a change.
 

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There is a difference between a private citizen with a constitutional right and the JOB of public servant, whose paycheck is paid by the taxpayers.

There is the other part of this... the penalty for misconduct is FAR more severe for a citizen than a police officer. You screw up with your tacticool AR and you might be doing hard time... not getting fired from your job.
Cops can go to jail also... Also I actually laugh when someone mentions taxpayers and my pay. Guess what I pay taxes also and those tax dollars don't go near as far towards my pay as you think...
 
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