Category Archives: politics

The state of affairs

Well. After a little hiatus I’ve decided to start writing again. We will see how long it lasts. One of the last drafts I typed was over two years ago and you can read it below. Sadly, much of what I was trying to express in 2016 is still in play in early 2019.
 
Alright. This may be long and I don’t know if anyone is going to bother reading it but here it goes.
 
This week marks the 16th anniversary of the day I was sworn in as a police officer. I managed to work one year before the world changed in 2001 and almost 14 years before the shooting in Ferguson started the social/political/media narrative my profession currently finds itself in.
 
In that time I’ve seen many things, experienced many things, done many things, and have at least a small amount of insight into the LE side of the current “conversation”, if you can call it that. Unfortunately the media, the public (influenced by media) and the politicians seem to be the dominant voices.
 
First off, let me say unequivocally that there are “bad cops” out there and sometimes there are just inept cops…or what I call “delivering the mail” cops. There are poorly trained cops and there are cops that don’t take their training seriously. Anyone who has ever been in the military has seen the spectrum of “soldiers” that serve…anyone who has ever worked with any large group of people knows that no profession is immune from the “screw-ups”.
 
BUT. This whole “they”-thing and “THE Police” and all the other universal adjectives in play are a load of crap. A different conversation with words like “those people” or “your people” or “those types” associated with race or sexual preference would immediately be jumped on as racist, sexist, or some other “ist” and rightfully so. But everyone (seemingly) seems very willing to say “The Police” have some sort of universal responsibility for the actions of individuals, or even entire departments other than their own. It’s the bizarre “logic” that leads people to “understand” how a guy in Dallas winds up shooting PEOPLE for actions neither they nor their employer had any responsibility for.
 
It seems like folks believe “WE” are some sort of uniform, nationalized force…and that when one officer #$%&@’s up that somehow means we all do, or would do, the same thing. Police service is very local in terms of quality. Large Metro PD’s are nothing like my Mid-Size agency which is nothing like a small 8 man PD.
 
But. One thing people in LE do have in common is that we all have to deal with people in fairly similar situations. While how we may handle it may differ, taking an armed person into custody is what it is. Walking up to a car occupied by a guy you think may be an armed robbery suspect feels the same to a cop in Anchorage as it does to one in Miami.
 
Why do I say this? Hopefully to help people understand why most cops wont knee-jerk declare some of these recent shootings as “bad”. Many of us know that what we see on the television or the phone/computer screen (or in the Ferguson case simply a false narrative pumped out incessantly by the media)  is not the entire story. We (cops) can often times see how a shooting that appears unjustified to the uninitiated could POSSIBLY be justified.

let the hate flow through you

The Costa Hate.

Someone explain it to me. I don’t drink his kool-aid, but I don’t hate the guy’s stuff either. Is it jealousy of his success? Is this some sort of “sell-out” thing, like some folks point at musicians when they go commercial? Sure, this video is a tad loopy, but it’s Airsoft in Japan and they wanted him to do this for a photo-op.

I see a lot of OMG HE’S FLAGGING PEOPLE WITH A GUN!!! going around. But it really looks like he’s pointing over everyone’s head at the far wall. And correct me if I’m wrong, but people actually point and shoot Airsoft at each other all of the time don’t they?

What’s the story with the hate on this dude? He’s certainly bought the AR platform some attention.

gun control..always the easy way out.

pistol packin' mama
pistol packin’ mama (Photo credit: Stolen w-heels)

I was considering what I would do If I were the “gun control guy in charge”. Thinking of things I have seen, I would add these ideas:

My PD’s domestic violence policy includes seizing firearms. Once taken the Judge and the Chief decide when to return them. Our state also routinely bars gun possession when DV orders of protection are placed. I’d upgrade that process with a form system that adds up factors (physical violence used 5pts, verbal threats 3 pts, weapon displayed 10 pts..etc) and once a level is reached weapon seizure would be required. Right now we have an officer discretion aspect that puts a burden on the officer. What about implementing a similar system nationwide?

I’d also look into expanding the ability to bar gun ownership. The “convicted felon” rule is a start, but MANY bad guys never get a felony CONVICTION. Plea deals…refusals to prosecute…etc mean lengthy records but no felony convictions. What about a person with 75 arrests for non felony crimes? I hate to deny a Constitutional right to someone because all they do is steal and use dope, but do they possess the mental ability to be able to buy a gun? What about someone who sets a puppy on fire? Someone with 10 DWI’s and 5 arrests for drunken assaults at night clubs?

And more difficult..what about doctors? Should they have the ability to call LE or a gvt office and deny someone with mental illness the right to a gun? What about the rights of the people living with that person?

All of this would have to have a system of due process…the person would have to be able to contest the removal of their rights. There would have to be determinations of how long these rights will be denied and what the requirements for getting it back would be.

It’s a difficult issue. I certainly DON’T want to deny someone their Constitutional rights without ABSOLUTE good cause. I don’t have any suggestions for how to implement any of these ideas or even know 100% that they would be good ideas…I’m just putting something out there.IMO however..the difficult course of action is probably going to be the most likely to be effective. Start dealing with the PEOPLE instead of the OBJECT.

But what we will most likely do is punish the majority of law abiders with bans on guns/magazines because its EASIER to do that than it is to deal with the difficult issues that would really address the problem without punishing those who don’t deserve it.

Where to start with school security.

Old School_House_
Old School_House_ (Photo credit: Total Mayhem)

Fact of the matter is. If you are serious about school safety 99% of them need to be torn down, re-designed and re-built. The days of “walk into your local school house/open and welcoming design” are gone….IMO a start would be:

-A buzzer opened door that leads directly into the school is BAD. People WILL need to come and go from a school for many legitimate reasons. What schools should have is what many PD’s have. A front desk area where you can do routine tasks through bullet-proof glass. If you need to come in to see admin you get buzzed into the admin area which is separate from the school area. If you need to get into the school proper you are let in from there.

-Exterior door and ground floor window glass cant be breached by some kid with a rifle.

-Interior classroom doors are always closed and locked during class…and the doors are “unkickable” and designed so that a person with a gun cant break out glass and reach in.

-Someone in the school, be it a full time SRO, a trained guard, or trained staff needs access to a weapon as an emergency tool.

Google People Finder for the Earthquake/Tsunami

http://japan.person-finder.appspot.com/?lang=en

Talk about a fast and generous move from GOOGLE.

Share this tool to anyone/everyone who may be affected whether Japan, Hawaii, Cali or where ever

http://japan.person-finder.appspot.com/?small=yes&lang=en


	

diversion from the usual…

U.S.
Image via Wikipedia

I typically avoid political issues here, but the recent turn of events in our Congress leaves me concerned. If passed, this new health care legislation would be a major shift towards the government assuming more power than I believe the Constitution allows. While I do believe that our health care system does indeed need an overhaul, the government believing that they have the authority to mandate that we ALL must purchase a product as part of our citizenship seems blatantly unconstitutional on it’s face. They like to point to auto insurance, but ignore the fact that if I don’t want to pay auto insurance I simply do not drive a car.

The “interstate commerce clause” and the “general welfare” statement will probably be their attempt to legitimize this power grab. I can but hope that the “checks and balances” of the Senate or the Supreme Court perform their duties as they were intended.

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