Cyclic Nature of Crime vs. LE Tactics


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Elza
June 19, 2007, 05:10 PM
This is not intended to be a “cop bash fest”. I sincerely hope that it won’t turn into one. I would like the opinion of others regarding the topic. What is the topic? I’m glad that you asked.

A lot of people (myself included) are not particularly happy with some (note that I said SOME) of the tactics used by LE agencies today. Back in the ‘20’s and ‘30’s people demanded a stop to crime and murder. The LEO’s responded. Unfortunately, by the '50's the LEO's got to the point of being brutal. I remember seeing this in the late '50's/early '60's. (I’m not talking about using fire hoses and batons on civil rights protestors but to the people at large.) People finally decided that they had had enough and called for police reform. By the end of the ‘60’s the LEO’s were virtually hamstrung. I’m sure that the older folks on here will remember the infamous ‘waning shot rule’. Then, as crime started to rise, the same people demanded that the LEO’s “do their job”. So the restrictions on the LEO’s were gradually lifted and continued to what it is today. Now, people are again unhappy and are calling for police reform. So I predict that as things worsen the LEO’s will again face tightening restrictions. (Of course if Shrub et al get their way and let 20 million Mexicans in it will doubtless have a tremendous impact. Estimates run as high as 50% will be illiterate and/or criminal. This could well run the upward crime swing clear off of the chart.)

My point, verbose though it may be, is that all things are cyclic. They have to get really bad before reforms are carried out be it against crime or LE tactics. The reforms are too drastic because people are P.O.’ed and the whole thing starts over again. Why can we not get the citizens and LE agencies to work together to find an acceptable medium? Perhaps this is a pipe dream but I fail to see why it is impossible. Why is it so difficult to find a middle ground here?

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jselvy
June 19, 2007, 05:15 PM
History is of a cyclic nature, and it runs wheels within wheels.


Jefferson

ArmedBear
June 19, 2007, 05:52 PM
History is of a cyclic nature, and it runs wheels within wheels.


Dude!

jselvy
June 19, 2007, 05:58 PM
sorry to go all philosophic on you.
I study history for a living, and it does run in cycles. Little cycles like restrictions on police power feed into larger cycles like political change and the lifespan of nations. If I could only figure out the exact cyclic rate I could even predict events.

Jefferson

ArmedBear
June 19, 2007, 06:00 PM
Not a problem. I can wax philosophical myself now and again.:)

Hmmm...

A universal modeling theory. That could be a good way to build a little wealth.

jselvy
June 19, 2007, 06:03 PM
There are a lot of experimental historians trying with high powered mathematics involving more letters than numbers trying to figure it out even as we speak, but the going is hard. It involves things like known history, mass psychology, climate patterns, and chaos theory.

Jefferson

pcosmar
June 19, 2007, 06:37 PM
I can see a huge government grant to study it for a few years. Tax dollars at work?

jselvy
June 19, 2007, 06:41 PM
I pay them why shouldn't they pay me?
I could probably get DHS to foot the bill as this has vast national security implications.

Jefferson

Kentak
June 19, 2007, 08:16 PM
I study history for a living,

I'm envious. How do I get a job like that?

K

jselvy
June 19, 2007, 08:23 PM
Stay in School forever

Jefferson

Roccobro
June 19, 2007, 11:08 PM
Here is CA, I still see it as the gloves need to be taken off to deal with crime problems. Sure the LAPD gave itself (another) black eye by lumping up the media during a recent protest (they ignored the orders to move *shrug*).

My County was the highest in the state when it came to sending crooks to prison. Our crime was high and we are seeing a turnaround FINALLY after many years of aggressive enforcement AND prosecution. Unfortunately, CA as a whole is going in the crapper still until we stop pampering criminals.

With cameras being ever more prevelant and officer conduct being super scrutinized, I think we are heading in the right direction. Once the trust is brought back to the profession of LEO's then the citizens can without hesitation say "take off the kid gloves". Until then...

Justin

DontBurnMyFlag
June 19, 2007, 11:59 PM
Its not necessarily cyclic. Its basic human nature/instinct.

People dont like being told what to do. Its my job to, at times, tell them what to do.

People resist, and have resisted since the beginning of the police. Everyone reacts differently.

You could take the nicest, most politically correct cop and he will still face resistance at some point.

You can take an overwhelmingly brutal 1960's riot cop and get complete compliance.

Or vice versa for both those situations.

Some people see kindness as weakness thus creating another topic entirely.

But it is impossible to create a middle ground. There are few instances where the police and public get along perfectly. You could be a perfect law-abiding citizen, but when that patrol car pulls up behind you, you wish he wasnt there. People only want us when they need us.

In the future when Tom Cruise begins to solve Pre-crime and we all go into minority report status.:D ..you will still get resistance to the LE community.

Im going off into a rant and new topics haha. sorry

Autolycus
June 20, 2007, 12:23 AM
I recommend taking a sociology course and some Criminology courses. They often discuss how the justice system changes to fit the demands of society.

R127
June 20, 2007, 11:54 AM
Crime prevention is a huge part of the problem. Police can't prevent crime unless they come down on people before any crime has been comitted and things break down pretty quick from there. Another large slice of the problem is the notion that police can and should somehow protect you, that means they need to be in complete control, things get ugly real fast again. Police are best used for detective work and hauling in fugitives, there is also a valid small role in emergency response. It is also important to remember police aren't being used to keep the peace or enforce justice, they enforce the law. This is a very different thing. They are also extremely selective about enforcing the law and have consistently shown that as an institution they care nothing for supporting the supreme law of the land nor for opposing illegal legislation. Police don't make society and they can't save society, some sort of reform is certainly in order.

jcoiii
June 20, 2007, 12:05 PM
history is full of backlashes and shifts to the opposite extremes when one policy or idea becomes too extreme.

Frog48
June 20, 2007, 11:59 PM
The current problem is that the general public has deemed it tolerable for politicians and law enforcement to ignore some civil rights in the name of being "proactive" toward crime.

Most people have no problem with this, as they figure "if you're not doing anything wrong, you have nothing to worry about", and never anticipate being on the recieving end of a police interrogation as a result of loose controls on police power.

I dont blame police for their culture, I blame you, me, and everybody. WE encouraged police to view and treat EVERYBODY as a "criminal who hasnt been busted yet", in the selfish mindset that it is keep us, as individuals, safer. WE encouraged police to develop the Us vs. Them attitude.

Thats one of my beefs with the Republican party... the so-called "War on Crime" and eroding of civil rights in the name of "getting tough on crime".

Of course, just my opinion.

Don't Tread On Me
June 21, 2007, 03:30 AM
There may very well be cycles in the rise of police power, then a political reform to limit it and so forth. However, I believe this cycle gradually increases. It goes up 2 notches in authoritarianism, down 1 notch toward libertarianism. Until of course the nation/state/empire collapses entirely as a consequence of totalitarianism's incompatibility with the human spirit.


The debate clincher (in my opinion, if anyone wants to oppose the idea that things are getting worse) is simply to point to the law. Laws are often restrictions. Restrictions require enforcement. The more laws, the more enforcement. We've seen nothing but a gradual increase in the amount of laws on the books since this nation's founding.


Rights and liberties have been gradually eroded by laws. Laws are enforced by the state, and the state does this via police or fed agency.


The more you take what was once a normal, legal activity of the people - and place it into the domain of illegal, you automatically create more crime. The more areas of human interest you place into the illegal realm, the more involved and tense the situation will become. For example, some people firmly believe that you shouldn't be able to tell them what they can and cannot put into their bodies. They believe this so firmly that they are willing to challenge the law with armed violence. There is a cultural limit to what you can do to people as far as what they feel is natural or what is "right" as far as behavior or practices. The more that line gets pushed back, the more violent people become.


Due to this, police are forced to find newer and more effective ways of enforcing the law. Some of these are down right brutal and oppressive. If you rolled back the laws to an earlier time period in America, chances are each police department wouldn't need a heavily armored APC with battering ram, SWAT teams with fully automatic weapons, .50BMG sniper rifles, helicopters with FLIR, flashbangs, CS gas, tasers and Psyops weapons, and in some cases - explosives. Face the facts, law enforcement didn't need those things in the past. Excuse is made that people are just more rotten. People do not just magically become more rotten. People will always be people. It is laws that define what is and isn't bad behavior or practices.


A lot of what police practically turn themselves into a military force today for, would have just been ignored in the past as no one's business.

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