Tragic events such as the 2014 Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson, Mo. and the police-involved death of Eric Garner in New York City has spurred debate about whether or not police departments within the U.S. are becoming more militarized. The emphasis seems to be on the word “more,” implying that militarization is somehow a foregone conclusion and the question is how much more militarized they will become. Are these incidents evidence that police are increasingly militarized?
By Leischen Stelter, American Military University
As tension and violence continued to escalate this past weekend in Ferguson, Missouri, there remains intense scrutiny about the response by police. Some vocal critics, like Missouri state Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal, accuse the department of being heavy-handed by using tear gas and other crowd disbursement techniques on peaceful protestors.
The Ongoing Battle of Stop-and-Frisk: NYPD Faces Epic Battle Today While Detroit Police Chief Pledges to Continue Practice
One of the most controversial law enforcement topics to hit the mainstream media recently is the use of stop-and-frisk tactics.
On August 12, a federal judge ruled that the NYPD violated the Constitution with its practice of stopping and searching people suspected of criminal activity. The judge said that stop-and-frisk tactics amounted to “indirect racial profiling” by targeting blacks and Hispanics.