The days of community policing are being phased out, and coming to take its place is a more powerful, ominous form of policing. With the decrease in cost of high technology coupled with the powerful military equipment left over from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, American police forces are begging to rival some countries’ militaries. While at the same time powerful private entities are attempting the slow take over of the American prison system. With corporate money funding high office and corporate lobbyists writing legislation, making sure to cross all the t’s and dot all the I’s, the corporate takeover has become a legal profit making scheme. All of which have led to a change in the public’s perception of crime, police, and our justice system as a whole.
The Law Enforcement Support Office is dedicated to supplying excess military equipment to local state and federal law enforcement agencies. Through this program departments are acquiring a plethora of military equipment. The equipment ranges a wide spectrum, land, air, marine, and assault weapons. There are Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles being deployed in American streets. These vehicles are heavily armored, powerful and are used by the military to transport troops between locations. They can be outfitted with torrent-mounted guns, or “less lethal” weapons like Long Range Acoustic Devices (LRAD’s) that emit sounds at up to 160 decibels that can painfully incapacitate people. “According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), being exposed to sounds at or above 120 decibels can put people at risk for hearing loss. (For reference, a normal conversation is typically around 60 decibels and a lawnmower clocks in at about...
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It seems clear that there is a problem in our criminal justice system. When there are private companies securing profits from incarcerating a world leading number of citizens, when our police forces can hold their own against some countries’ entire military might, and when the streets are flooded with cameras and microphones that track your vehicle and your whereabouts effortlessly. America is on the verge of becoming a police state, and some argue that it has already happened in Camden where you cant walk on the street without being stopped and questioned, and possibly given a loitering violation that carries a fine. The legislation is being written everyday, less violent offenses are being taken on by police forces and the court systems to fill the prison beds before the state has to pay a low crime tax for not having the occupancy requirement fulfilled.
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