|Police Militarization in Ferguson, Missouri|
Notes From The Police State
- A Democrat Congressman wants to restrict the Feds from giving machine guns to local police. Naturally GOP Speaker John Boehner is silent about the growing police state that both parties fund.
A Democratic congressman plans to introduce a bill to restrict a Defense Department program that provides machine guns and other surplus military equipment for free to local law enforcement agencies across the country.
Rep. Hank Johnson, D-Ga., said Thursday that the death of an unarmed teenager who was shot by a police officer in a St. Louis suburb highlights the need for the legislation, which has been in the works for months.
|Rep. Hank Johnson, D-Ga|
The bill comes as members of Congress have called for the Justice Department to investigate the shooting of a black teen by a police officer in Ferguson, Mo reports the Associated Press.
Police in riot gear and military garb have clashed nightly with protesters since Aug. 9 shooting of Michael Brown and at times have trained weapons on them from armored trucks.
Johnson said city streets should be a place for businesses and families, "not tanks and M16s." He said a Pentagon program that transfers surplus military equipment to state and local law enforcement has led to police agencies resembling paramilitary forces.
"Militarizing America's main streets won't make us any safer, just more fearful and more reticent," Johnson said Thursday. He said his bill would limit the type of military equipment that can be transferred to law enforcement, and require states to certify they can account for all equipment received.
The bill, to be introduced in September, targets a 24-year-old military surplus program that transfers equipment from blankets to bayonets and tanks to police and sheriff's departments across the country.
An Associated Press investigation last year of the Defense Department program found that a large share of the $4.2 billion in surplus military gear distributed since 1990 went to police and sheriff's departments in rural areas with few officers and little crime.
A spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, declined to comment on Johnson's proposal.
Police Attack on News You Didn't See
|Feds arm cops with 93,000 machine guns|
As crime goes down, since 2006, the Pentagon has distributed 432 mine-resistant armored vehicles to local police departments. It has also doled out more than 400 other armored vehicles, 500 aircraft, and 93,000 machine guns.
Both Democrats and Republicans have joined in a giant group hug to fund the militarization of local American police departments.
"The state calls its own violence `law', but
that of the individual `crime'"