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Women says police went too far in drug raid
abc13.com ^ | 10/25/06 | Mark Garay

Posted on 10/28/2006 11:27:01 AM PDT by traviskicks

A Sugar Land woman says police went too far when they burst into her home and arrested her boyfriend and son on drug charges. The raid left her dog dead and caused thousands of dollars in damage.

"It was bang, bang, bang, then there was a boom as they broke the door in, threw the fire grenade, and then shot the dog," said homeowner Margot Allen. "This all happened in anywhere from five to fifteen seconds."

That's how Allen's son and boyfriend describe what happened that day. Sugar Land police acted on a tip. They say they found traces of marijuana and cocaine in her trash after a month-long investigation.

"There's no crack done in my house," she said. "There's occasional marijuana in my house. I don't do it because I don't happen to like it."

Based on the evidence in the trash, a regional SWAT team arrived at the home. Police say they knocked, waited 30 seconds, and then broke in with guns and a concussion grenade. The house suffered $5,000 damage and one officer shot and killed Margot's golden lab, Shadow, when police say it charged toward one of the officers. What did officers find inside?

"A joint half the size of my pinky fingernail and then one about this big," she said, showing a length on her finger. "And not anywhere near this big around."

The Sugar Land Police Department declined an on-camera interview, but they are defending their actions, saying they followed protocol to the letter.

The department says it was determined that the bust would be of a moderate risk. Even though they had no specific threat, they were prepared for firearms in the house and felt obligated to anticipate any resistance or violence. They say killing the dog was regrettable. They also say Allen's boyfriend has a history of drug convictions. But for Allen, it was overkill.

"They treated us like we were terrorists," she said. "They broke the door down. They shot my dog. They set my house on fire."

Both Allen's son and her boyfriend were charged with a Class B misdemeanor for that small amount of marijuana. That's punishable by up to six months in the county jail or a maximum $2,000 fine. Both of them will be in court on January 9.


TOPICS: Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: biggovernment; jbt; leosgonewild; warondrugs; wod
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To: Jaysun
"a nice sized back of cocaine "

How many grams is that?

51 posted on 10/28/2006 12:29:57 PM PDT by verity (Muhammed is a Dirt Bag)
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To: traviskicks

I agree. I was simply commenting on the remarks made in this thread.


52 posted on 10/28/2006 12:31:15 PM PDT by Axhandle
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To: GLH3IL
"the reasons for our invasion remain solid."

The reason for the search may have been solid, though the article makes it sound like small potatos in the world of crime and drug dealing. The reason for the SWAT team and the violence by the cops hasn't been explained at all, at least not in the article. It may have been justified, or not, but the small amount of drugs produced by the raid is not justification.

As for the assumption that such tactics are justified because there may have been guns inside, well, our founding fathers assumed "that every man be armed." Therefore if guns are suspected, police protocol should call for the same violent police tactics for all search warrants. At least as long as we have the RKBA.

Yeah, I can imagine the dog may have attempted to defend its masters - that is the nature of dogs and one of the reasons for owning them...that's probably why it has apparently become police protocol to shoot them immediately.

I happen to agree with you that the invasion of Iraq was justified, on several levels, but I'm not too convinced that drawing a parallel with this particular SWAT action makes a very good case for our action in Iraq.

53 posted on 10/28/2006 12:31:46 PM PDT by Sam Cree (Don't mix alcopops and ufo's)
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To: eleni121

"Land of the law. Don't like it? Move to Waziristan."

I see little difference between your beliefs and the Taliban. You should go to another country more suitable to your primitive and dogmatic beliefs.


54 posted on 10/28/2006 12:33:45 PM PDT by takenoprisoner
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To: GLH3IL
"The department says it was determined that the bust would be of a moderate risk. Even though they had no specific threat, they were prepared for firearms in the house and felt obligated to anticipate any resistance or violence."

You can say this to justify any action. "prepared for firearms" In Texas? go figure. Moderate risk? Is there ever a low risk? probably not. This is legalese to cover their actions. I fully appreciate the dangerous nature of police work. However I'm afraid that after prolonged exposure to the worst elements of society, some forget that most of us aren't violent criminals. Now if they thought they were busting a major drug dealing operation, that might justify the fear of an armed response. But some guy with a bong watching NASCAR doesnt justify the force in my opinion.

i'm curious how you come to the conclusion that a person who is a drug user (a non-violent misdemeanor offense) is more likely to present armed resistance than a burglar (felony offender).

55 posted on 10/28/2006 12:34:17 PM PDT by jdub
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To: Axhandle

oh, well I'll have to agree with you, sometimes the 'cop bashing' does go overboard, and in those cases it does nothing to advance our agenda. But I think most of the time those comments are meant to be against the laws.


56 posted on 10/28/2006 12:35:16 PM PDT by traviskicks (http://www.neoperspectives.com/Amnesty_From_Government.htm)
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To: jdub
Can you explain to me why the police need to wear black ski masks when they make these raids?

I would presume to protect their faces from flash burns, a clawing suspects' fingernails, or other hazards. That's just a guess. I don't know their policies and procedures.

Why don't the officers making traffic stops wear them?

Perhaps there is no reason to.

57 posted on 10/28/2006 12:35:54 PM PDT by Axhandle
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To: Peacekeeper357

a judge may have issued the warrant, though I doubt it specified the manner in which the search/arrest was to take place.


58 posted on 10/28/2006 12:36:09 PM PDT by jdub
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To: Axhandle

I don't think I'd want to meet the woman who was friendly with that...


59 posted on 10/28/2006 12:36:22 PM PDT by PLMerite ("Unarmed, one can only flee from Evil. But Evil isn't overcome by fleeing from it." Jeff Cooper)
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To: takenoprisoner

"we raise up our glasses aginst evil forces saying, Whiskey for my men and beer for our horses"

Your sacrasm is entertaining, sort of, but wrong headed. Again, the cops were doing their job until the facts become clear about what info they had prior to the raid, what info was given to the judge to get the warrant, what procedures were followed vs. what were appropriate for the info they had.

If, for some reason, they used a no knock entry and a dynamic entry where it was not warranted or reasonable...then I would agree that there should be some heads rolling. But we don't have information on that do we? Just an article where the allegeg criminals are whining about the mean police. Hardly unbiased reporting...hardly fair....and very likely there is another side to this that you have not read. Time will tell....if the cops were wrong, I'll say so.....but I if the facts support the actions of the police I doubt if you'll admit to acting like a knee jerk liberal.


60 posted on 10/28/2006 12:37:10 PM PDT by GLH3IL (Truth: The remedy for liberalism.)
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To: Axhandle
My answer to why they wear the masks is because the SWAT guys in the movies and on tv do it, and they look cool doing it.

All that said, if it wasn't for the policies and laws that allow and promote this activity, I dont think we would have officers engaging in it. So my real problem is with our government that believes it has a right to subject its citizens to such treatment on a mere suspicion of (minor)wrongdoing.

61 posted on 10/28/2006 12:39:36 PM PDT by jdub
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To: jdub

"i'm curious how you come to the conclusion that a person who is a drug user (a non-violent misdemeanor offense) is more likely to present armed resistance than a burglar (felony offender)."

I'm curious how you know fopr a certainty that this guy is just a "drug user". I've been in law enforcement for over 20 years. Drug users are far more prone to violence that burglers, even the types involved with minor drug offenses. Again, if they police had reliable and credible information that led them to believe that that residence was being used by individuals to manufacture or deliver cannabis or a controlled substance then the dynamic entry was totally justified. Obviously a judge was convinced of something as a no knock search warrant was issued.

The accused are always innocent until proven guilty. But if facts are developed that would lead a reasonable person to believe that there would be a danger to police in executing the warrant....then I have no problems with them doing what they had to do to stay safe. If that means shooting a dog, so be it. If that means using flash bangs and kicking in doors, so be it.

As I said earlier...there are many facts in this that we simply don't know, and which would go far into establishing if the raid was conducted properly or not.

The fact that some pot was found in the house suggests that if these folks had not been doing something they should not have been doing, they would not have had any problems. The resposnibility for the dead dog and the damages to the house reside with those people that elected to live a lifestyle that exposed them to the possibility that they could be raided. We don't know who their associates were. Were they good friends of know drug dealers. Was a known drug dealer saying that there was a stash in this house? Was there credible information to support a probable cause belief that drugs were in the home? Was the warrant valid? Was the judge aware of all relevant facts about the situation before he/sh issued the warrant? Was there a warrant? If not was there an emergency exigent cirumstance that justified the entry? If so what was the cicumstance? Was the cicumstance reasoable?

There are a whole slate of factors that are in play here...to pass judgement on them without having a solid grasp of all the facts relevant to the decision making process and the conditions encountered by the police as they executed the raid is just knee-jerk in tone and seemingly unworthy of a thoughtful conservative.


62 posted on 10/28/2006 12:57:43 PM PDT by GLH3IL (Truth: The remedy for liberalism.)
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To: takenoprisoner
You should go to another country more suitable to your primitive and dogmatic beliefs.



Really? Primitive tribes do drugs, drugs you have never heard of. It is the lawless primitive ones like drug legalizers - a euphemism for do drug any time - who want to allow all kinds of anti social behavior dangerous to others. Dogmatic? How so when the consensus votes that THC should remain illegal.
63 posted on 10/28/2006 12:59:36 PM PDT by eleni121 ("Show me just what Mohammed brought:: evil and inhumanity")
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To: traviskicks
Women says police went too far in drug raid

Women or woman I wonder?

How many is she exactly?

64 posted on 10/28/2006 1:01:38 PM PDT by humblegunner (If you're gonna die, die with your boots on.)
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To: Wolfie

"They used to do that, just to justify the carnage. Then they discovered we'd sit still for whatever they do no matter what's found, or even if nothing's found at all."

Sic Semper Tyrannis.


65 posted on 10/28/2006 1:05:15 PM PDT by dljordan
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To: eleni121
Primitive tribes do drugs, drugs you have never heard of. It is the lawless primitive ones like drug legalizers - a euphemism for do drug any time -

Ugh, we primitive, do drug any time. No manu-fac-ture base,
rely on drug grow from ground, ugh! Primitive good.

You're funny.

66 posted on 10/28/2006 1:06:52 PM PDT by humblegunner (If you're gonna die, die with your boots on.)
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To: jdub

"That happened here not too long ago (TN). Cops got the address wrong, broke into an elderly couple's home, and the man was shot dead trying to defend his wife. Oh well, so sorry. We were following protocol, after all."

Was that in Lebanon, Tn.?


67 posted on 10/28/2006 1:07:54 PM PDT by dljordan
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To: GLH3IL

What really disturbs me is that, after a month long investigation, the fact that some drug residue was found in their trash can justified such action. I should think that if he was more than just a drug user, that after a month of looking they should have been able to find some kind of evidence other than (assumption)roaches and maybe some coke residue. Do you remember the case in Houston a year or so ago where the police mistook some kind of plant a homeowner had growing out by the street for a pot plant, and conducted the same kind of raid on him? He was totally innocent, and found himself face down in his home with a shotgun pointed at his head. Maybe our standard for what justifies this kind of invasive procedure has become a little too loose?


68 posted on 10/28/2006 1:09:28 PM PDT by jdub
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To: eleni121
How so when the consensus votes that THC alcohol should remain illegal.

Put that in your pipe and smoke it.

69 posted on 10/28/2006 1:10:05 PM PDT by Rb ver. 2.0
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To: dljordan

Yes, that is the case I was talking about.


70 posted on 10/28/2006 1:10:17 PM PDT by jdub
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To: jdub

"Can you explain to me why the police need to wear black ski masks when they make these raids?"

The reason I've read on several Cop websites is they wear them to prevent burns in case of an explosion or fire. Of course there's also the ego factor of looking really frightening.


71 posted on 10/28/2006 1:11:47 PM PDT by dljordan
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To: JLS

"Yep, this so called drug war has been the greatest corrupter of the police in US history."


Second that. In addition the WOD is funding/building the richest criminal empire in history.

Jeez, you'd think someone in Washington would remember Al Capone, Prohibition, and all that stuff.

It didn't work the first time. Why is it going to be any better the second time?


72 posted on 10/28/2006 1:12:31 PM PDT by EEDUDE
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To: Wolfie

And the cops got their testosterone up and were able to pat each other on the butt and tell themselves what a good job they did....


73 posted on 10/28/2006 1:12:43 PM PDT by Kimmers (As a former fetus, I am against abortion.)
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To: traviskicks

At least the jackboots got the 'right' house.


74 posted on 10/28/2006 1:16:09 PM PDT by gilor (Pull the wool over your own eyes!)
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To: traviskicks
I bet these same police officers went to the local adult movie theater to bust patrons who were doing that terrible criminal act of masturbating.
75 posted on 10/28/2006 1:19:12 PM PDT by hodaka
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To: verity
(back of cocaine) How many grams is that?

Depends on what country you're in. In America it would be roughly 4,000 grams, give or take.
76 posted on 10/28/2006 1:30:48 PM PDT by Jaysun (Let's not ruin this moment with words.)
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To: traviskicks

Gusee there is no REALK crime to deal with in sugar land like rape robery murder white collar crime etc etc.


77 posted on 10/28/2006 1:33:59 PM PDT by Joe Boucher (an enemy of islam)
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To: hodaka
I bet these same police officers went to the local adult movie theater to bust patrons who were doing that terrible criminal act of masturbating.

Maybe they could get informants down at the marina to let them know when someone might have an undersized redfish in their cooler. You know those fisherman also own guns, so lets kick the door in and get'em before they can eat the fish.

as earlier noted, this is more a problem of judicial issuance of warrants like these being way to easily granted, and policy decisions that establish a low bar for what qualifies for applying for such a warrant.

I'm disappointed by some here who only see a crime, not the disproportionality of response to it. How about if someone told the police that your teenager snuck a beer up to his room? Its a crime, after all, and if they knock on the door the evil villan will have time to destroy the evidence.

78 posted on 10/28/2006 1:40:54 PM PDT by jdub
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To: jdub

" That happened here not too long ago (TN). Cops got the address wrong,.."

Not the only raid on an innocent homeowner due to wrong information. I am not sure if there is a site that tracks these incidents but I bet it would make interesting reading.


79 posted on 10/28/2006 1:48:18 PM PDT by lastchance (Hug your babies.)
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To: JLS

If drugs were legal not only would none of this happen but the huge cartels and probably half the crime in the world would be ended overnight. People get high now and they'll get high if drugs are legal. It's called freedom.
I don't do drugs and wouldn't if they were legal but that's my choice. Choice is part of freedom. No knock violent raids with grenades and machine guns are not.


80 posted on 10/28/2006 1:57:29 PM PDT by smoketree
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To: EEDUDE
Why is it going to be any better the second time?

Like all statist policies, it does not matter it they work or not. As long as they reliably lead to more government power and larger government budgets, they are supported by big government types and people they can fool by saying its for the children etc.
81 posted on 10/28/2006 1:58:31 PM PDT by JLS
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To: smoketree

As I said in my first post, this industry would now be dominated by Phillip Morris etc. rather than by drug cartels and not fund terrorism.


82 posted on 10/28/2006 2:02:13 PM PDT by JLS
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To: Bon mots

If no one is bleeding and no one is ripped off, the government should stay out of it.


83 posted on 10/28/2006 2:03:55 PM PDT by UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide (Give Them Liberty Or Give Them Death! - IT'S ISLAM, STUPID! - Islam Delenda Est! - Rumble thee forth)
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To: traviskicks
Another bumper sticker:

IF NO ONE IS BLEEDING OR RIPPED OFF,
GOVERNMENT SHOULD STAY OUT OF IT!

84 posted on 10/28/2006 2:11:36 PM PDT by UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide (Give Them Liberty Or Give Them Death! - IT'S ISLAM, STUPID! - Islam Delenda Est! - Rumble thee forth)
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To: AD from SpringBay

I Imagine that it's SOP to shoot any dog that dosen't cower in absolute fear.


85 posted on 10/28/2006 2:26:58 PM PDT by Cheapskate ( Preserve your freedom! ! Slap down the NANNY STATE!)
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To: Wolfie
But heck, they got that half a joint off the streets.

And since the investigation was only a month long, it probably cost no more than a couple of hundred grand to get that half a joint off the street. For the taxpayer that is quite a bargain.
86 posted on 10/28/2006 2:38:05 PM PDT by microgood
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To: muawiyah; jdub; KoRn; takenoprisoner

I thought these links might be of interest...
http://www.odmp.org/
http://www.aphf.org/lods.html


87 posted on 10/28/2006 2:43:33 PM PDT by Axhandle
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To: Wolfie

She had a joint - kill her and her family. Drugs are evil. < /sarcasm>


88 posted on 10/28/2006 2:47:42 PM PDT by glorgau
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To: flashbunny; traviskicks
and the cops went home safe!

"And how we burned in the camps later, thinking: What would things have been like if every Security operative, when he went out at night to make an arrest, had been uncertain whether he would return alive and had to say good-bye to his family? Or if, during periods of mass arrests, as for example in Leningrad, when they arrested a quarter of the entire city, people had not simply sat there in their lairs, paling with terror at every bang of the downstairs door and at every step on the staircase, but had understood they had nothing left to lose and had boldly set up in the downstairs hall an ambush of half a dozen people with axes, hammers, pokers, or whatever else was at hand? After all, you knew ahead of time that those bluecaps were out at night for no good purpose. And you could be sure ahead of time that you,d be cracking the skull of a cutthroat. Or what about the Black Maria sitting out there on the street with one lonely chauffeur, what if it had been driven off or its tires spiked? The Organs would very quickly have suffered a shortage of officers and transport and, notwithstanding all of Stalin's thirst, the cursed machine would have ground to a halt!"

-Alexander Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago

89 posted on 10/28/2006 3:06:59 PM PDT by Wolfie
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To: GLH3IL
The real issue here is if these folks had NOT been involved with drugs, they would not have been in the situation they are in.

No, the real issue is the unnecessary violence. I remember a retired black pastor in Boston who died in one of these raids. They had the wrong house.

I remember an east coast southern couple with a dog being pulled over in their car and their dog shot as the cops chased after a fictitious robbery based on a phone call from an idiot.

I remember four plain clothes cops (three of which were rookies) pumping 41 bullets into a black man as he tried to get into his apartment building. They thought his keys were a gun.

None of these cops were ever were punished. In the dreaded private sector, you always get punished for your mistakes. This is not the case for public workers.

90 posted on 10/28/2006 3:34:56 PM PDT by LoneRangerMassachusetts (The only good Mullah is a dead Mullah. The only good Mosque is the one that used to be there.)
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To: traviskicks
"They say they found traces of marijuana and cocaine in her trash after a month-long investigation."

So if some loser puts some contraband in the trash in front of my house and makes a phone call I'm suddenly targeted for investigation and can have my door kicked in, life threatened and house damaged? Seems that since the law provides no privacy protection for your trash they shouldn't be able to use what's in it as evidence since anyone walking down the street could have put it in there. On the bright side, it sounds like the Dhimmicrats have a new tool in their toolbox to expel conservatives. /s

91 posted on 10/28/2006 3:47:27 PM PDT by theymakemesick (If allah demands muslims kill non-muslims, he must be satan)
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To: traviskicks

I tend to freak out over attacking dogs (not scared, more like an adrenalin reaction that turns me into Dr. Jekyll's monster). That said, if you can't take a golden retriever out with the standard police bataka (club) - geez. It's not like retrievers are particularly big, or trained as attack dogs, or even dangerous if they WERE trained as attack dogs.


92 posted on 10/28/2006 3:56:59 PM PDT by Hardastarboard (Why isn't there an "NRA" for the rest of my rights?)
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To: Axhandle
I miss "peace officers". They kept the peace.

I despise "law enforcement officers". They enforce the law.

93 posted on 10/28/2006 5:42:48 PM PDT by elkfersupper
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To: GLH3IL
Where drugs are involved the likelyhood of armed resistance is significantly higher.

And why is that, do you think?

BTW, it's "likelihood".

94 posted on 10/28/2006 5:46:07 PM PDT by elkfersupper
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To: traviskicks

And don't forget that this raid cost the taxpayers thousands of dollars. But it was worth it! Our brave law enforcement officials go two joints off the streets!


95 posted on 10/28/2006 5:50:39 PM PDT by MistrX
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To: traviskicks
Personally, I have a great deal of respect for the police. It is the laws that I'm against and it is horrible that government puts the police in a position of enforcing immoral laws.

Travis, you need to rethink that.

One of the things (maybe) which separates us from tyranny is that our military personnel are taught that they must not engage our citizens on our own soil.

Cops are becoming different.

They could refuse if they wanted to do so.

96 posted on 10/28/2006 5:55:03 PM PDT by elkfersupper
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To: eleni121
Change the laws to allow crack and marijuana Big Mac, tobacco, booze, soft drink, fast food, SUV use if you don't like it. That will never happen.

There, all fixed.

97 posted on 10/28/2006 6:02:28 PM PDT by elkfersupper
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To: I got the rope
Why shouldn't this dog and this circumstance be reciprocal against the cop that shot the dog?

It's SOP to shoot the dog.

It should be SOP to shoot the invaders.

98 posted on 10/28/2006 6:04:18 PM PDT by elkfersupper
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To: elkfersupper
"One of the things (maybe) which separates us from tyranny is that our military personnel are taught that they must not engage our citizens on our own soil.

Cops are becoming different.

They could refuse if they wanted to do so."

Our Soldiers could also refuse orders that they don't agree with. That would not necessarily make them virtuous. When the rank and file start concerning themselves with the way that things ought to be and acting upon those impulses, rather than acting upon lawful orders of those appointed over them, that is when we're really screwed. What separates us from tyranny is not just that our military personnel are legally forbidden from engaging citizens on our own soil, but that they are led by professionals who recognize their subservience to that law and to their civilian masters. Take away the professionalism of our military leaders and then you have the potential for problems because that is when posse comitatus is worth no more than the paper it is written on.

Likewise, the rank and file police officers do not make their own rules. They follow the procedures within their departments. When they abandon their professional ethic and start acting upon their own impulses, which are obviously going to be skewed by their day in and day out dealings with the lowest dregs of our society, then that is when abuse of power and outrages really begin.

99 posted on 10/28/2006 6:06:40 PM PDT by Axhandle
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To: jdub
My answer to why they wear the masks is because the SWAT guys in the movies and on tv do it, and they look cool doing it.

My answer is that they wear the masks because they are afraid of US.

100 posted on 10/28/2006 6:06:46 PM PDT by elkfersupper
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