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AndyS

(14,559 posts)
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 12:52 PM Jul 2021

How, on God's green earth, did we get HERE?

I was at a friend's hose watching retro TV. One Adam Twelve from the late '60s/early '70s was on. The two officers were wearing standard blue oxford shirt type uniforms and they carried handcuffs, a nightstick and a standard Issue .38 police special revolver. What we called a 'six shooter'.

Today's patrol officer often wears body armor and carries a tactical baton, taser, pepper spray, a semi auto gun with 15 round magazine, tactical flashlight and a window punch to break car windows. In the trunk is an AR-15 just in case.

What happened between that charming cop show and now? In a greatly simplified version, this happened . . .

The country was trending toward more urbanization and traditional hunting was going away as a marketplace for guns.

Then the NRA, an organization formed to promote gun safety and marksmanship, was overtaken in a coup by the gun industry. That shifted the organization's focus to self defense. Self defense requires a different kind of gun, one designed for lethality against human beings. These semi automatic guns had 10-15 round magazines that could be reloaded in seconds. New organizations formed; Shooting Sports Foundation, Gun Owners of America and a myriad of paramilitary 'militias'. A whole new gun industry and lobby came into existence.

At the same time, the AR-15 (the prototype for the military M-16) and the AK-47 (a semi auto version of Russia's military weapon) were introduced for civilian sales. The NRA fabricated a new name for these weapons of war; 'modern sporting rifles'.*

Then the gun industry launched a new marketing philosophy. Gone were the ads about the great outdoors and hunting for game, replaced with an emphasis on protection, military imagery and of course scantily clad young women with clothing in dis-array.

A brilliant marketing move. White America is afraid of the 'other' with a gun and feeling impotent. They buy guns. Now there are more guns to be afraid of so they buy more guns which means there are more people with guns to be afraid of so they buy MORE guns. And these guns are far more lethal by design than the old six shooter. Almost as good as tobacco: make an addictive product cool and build a loyal customer base.

This sparked an arms race. Civilians have this armament, so police need it too. Police have it so civilians think it's the preferred defense product. Now police have SWAT squads, MRAP military vehicles, snipers and wear camo with gas masks and look more like a deployment to a combat zone in a third world country than someone to serve and protect.

I guess it's the same old story. Follow the money.

* Gunners will deny that the 'modern sporting rifles' are military grade and say assault weapon is a made up word. That is utter bullshit. The AR-15 IS THE PROTOTYPE developed for a Pentagon request for quote to replace the M-14. The AK-47 available for sale is Identical to the AK-47 designed by Kalishnakov for the Soviet army sold in semi auto form for civilians. The term assault weapon was coined in WWII to describe smaller, high fire rate sub machine guns introduced by the German army. It was the term used by Eugene Stoner to describe his AR-15. Who better to name a gun than the one who designed it? Ask any gunner and they'll tell you there is no gun problem. Gun deaths are far fewer than in the '90s. Crime is at an all time low. Both are true and form the kernel of truth in which to wrap the lie. They ignore that since 2014 gun deaths have risen by as much as 20% per year. EVERY YEAR. And while overall crime is down, homicides are up dramatically in all major cities. So, to the gunners promulgating this line of propaganda, I say you're full of shit and you know it.

51 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
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How, on God's green earth, did we get HERE? (Original Post) AndyS Jul 2021 OP
That's nailing it. You wrapped up the whole NRA/Wayne LaPierre taint in one.... brush Jul 2021 #1
Great post K&R berniesandersmittens Jul 2021 #2
The North Hollywood Shootout Srkdqltr Jul 2021 #3
Per Lethal Weapon. Ferrets are Cool Jul 2021 #8
No. Not Lethal Weapom. Don't be absurd . Srkdqltr Jul 2021 #15
Went to B&B Guns out here in the valley to get rifles and their shotguns and pistols had no effect hardluck Jul 2021 #23
I also think this was a turning point. those guys had body armor and AK-47s IcyPeas Jul 2021 #34
"Charming cop show"? WhiskeyGrinder Jul 2021 #4
Comparatively speaking, yes, it was. Ferrets are Cool Jul 2021 #7
You're right. It was. PCIntern Jul 2021 #9
Compared to... WhiskeyGrinder Jul 2021 #12
The real life shit they do now Ferrets are Cool Jul 2021 #47
The LAPD at the time was worse than it is now but maybe not as well armed. hunter Jul 2021 #13
Both Dragnet and Adam-12 were copaganda in real time. WhiskeyGrinder Jul 2021 #18
How about hill street blues? Propaganda? Mosby Jul 2021 #21
Sure. WhiskeyGrinder Jul 2021 #24
LOL geardaddy Jul 2021 #29
Authoritarianism is easy. Democracy, equality is hard NewHendoLib Jul 2021 #5
Bingo!! Ferrets are Cool Jul 2021 #6
Saw a cop in IHOP a couple of weeks ago... Wounded Bear Jul 2021 #10
I've seen some of them and wondered halfulglas Jul 2021 #48
Ahh the good ole days. multigraincracker Jul 2021 #11
There was an article several years ago about the impact of switching uniforms from CrispyQ Jul 2021 #14
What happened? Reagan. Grins Jul 2021 #16
⬆︎THIS⬆︎ Auggie Jul 2021 #26
Preach brother! HAB911 Jul 2021 #17
Started with the Newhall Shootout in 1970 hardluck Jul 2021 #19
Ask the surviving Koch brother and his pals who fund weaponry mayhem, who invested in Dick Cheney's Ford_Prefect Jul 2021 #20
When was the last time the Fire Department got a cat out of a tree? brooklynite Jul 2021 #22
Yep, they've moved on to ducks. WhiskeyGrinder Jul 2021 #27
You can thank the war on drugs as far as the police YMB Jul 2021 #25
John Oliver nails it: Initech Jul 2021 #28
Oliver is the best. Under The Radar Jul 2021 #40
When I saw the Police Militarization segment... Initech Jul 2021 #41
It is like they are hoping for riots, at at least geared up for it. Under The Radar Jul 2021 #42
The US is and has been an imperialistic nation for a long time. jalan48 Jul 2021 #30
Lets put this where it belongs quakerboy Jul 2021 #31
Police killed by gunfire is about as low as the 50's and 60's... Buckeye_Democrat Jul 2021 #32
In otherwords, in spite of a massive buying of weapons quakerboy Jul 2021 #51
Also, gangs intrepidity Jul 2021 #33
agreed, the rise of street gangs (in their modern form) and the drug trade would be my guess Amishman Jul 2021 #37
When I watched Bowling For Columbine BigmanPigman Jul 2021 #35
If you remember Laugh -In, the first FFFOF award: hoosierspud Jul 2021 #36
Great post! IrishAfricanAmerican Jul 2021 #38
The best line was the last. Under The Radar Jul 2021 #39
I remember one episode of Adam-12 where one of the officers got into HUGE TROUBLE for... tenderfoot Jul 2021 #43
The original NRA was formed to fight the current NRA Buzz cook Jul 2021 #44
K&R Blue Owl Jul 2021 #45
Seems convenient that the promulgation is a two-fer. live love laugh Jul 2021 #46
Late 1960's Marthe48 Jul 2021 #49
There's an episode of Hill Street Blues, circa 1981... malthaussen Jul 2021 #50

brush

(54,470 posts)
1. That's nailing it. You wrapped up the whole NRA/Wayne LaPierre taint in one....
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 01:03 PM
Jul 2021

very on-point and informative post.

Thank you.

Srkdqltr

(6,552 posts)
3. The North Hollywood Shootout
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 01:16 PM
Jul 2021

I think this was a turning point for policing 20+ years ago. The bad guys were heavily armed and the police had to go to gun shops to get guns to stop the robbery.

Srkdqltr

(6,552 posts)
15. No. Not Lethal Weapom. Don't be absurd .
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 02:01 PM
Jul 2021

North Hollywood shootout is a real thing. Google it. I watched it on TV in 1997. The police were badly out gunned there was a documentary about it. Don't remember when.

hardluck

(657 posts)
23. Went to B&B Guns out here in the valley to get rifles and their shotguns and pistols had no effect
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 02:31 PM
Jul 2021

I was driving through North Hollywood at the time going back to my home in Burbank after my classed ended at UCLA when all this went down.

https://projects.dailynews.com/north-hollywood-shootout/

IcyPeas

(22,056 posts)
34. I also think this was a turning point. those guys had body armor and AK-47s
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 03:41 PM
Jul 2021

The police were out gunned. and yes. they did go to a local gun store to get more. The whole area was in lockdown and the whole thing was televised.



hunter

(38,459 posts)
13. The LAPD at the time was worse than it is now but maybe not as well armed.
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 01:57 PM
Jul 2021

If you can imagine that.



Adam-12 was a white people television fantasy.

WhiskeyGrinder

(22,718 posts)
24. Sure.
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 02:35 PM
Jul 2021

More realistic doesn't mean it's not propaganda. Even when it showed cops being "bad" -- failing in their jobs or in being decent people -- the moral was, oh well, what can you do, everyone's just trying to do the best they can, this is the best system we've got, this is the gritty reality of life in The City. In any case, "let's do it to them before they do it to us."

NewHendoLib

(60,069 posts)
5. Authoritarianism is easy. Democracy, equality is hard
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 01:42 PM
Jul 2021

we are in a period of apathy, narcissism, laziness. Bad part of a cycle

Wounded Bear

(58,994 posts)
10. Saw a cop in IHOP a couple of weeks ago...
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 01:49 PM
Jul 2021

I was struck by how much equipment he was festooned with, simply to go in and have breakfast in a restaruant. Yes, he was on break and looked armed to the teeth. He had to be carrying 30 pounds of gear, at least, and that was without 'tactical armor.' Not sure if he was wearing a bullet-proof vest, but he did have a tactical vest with flashlight, etc. He had both his service weapon-with extended mag- and a taser.

That was just a local city cop from a mid-sized city, hardly an urban commando.

halfulglas

(1,654 posts)
48. I've seen some of them and wondered
Wed Jul 14, 2021, 09:52 AM
Jul 2021

How can some of them be so out of shape with all the extraneous weight they carry the whole shift?

CrispyQ

(36,768 posts)
14. There was an article several years ago about the impact of switching uniforms from
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 02:01 PM
Jul 2021

light blue or khaki shirts with dark pants, to all black. It seems like such a minor change, but it wasn't positive. Community members immediately felt more intimidated.

Auggie

(31,323 posts)
26. ⬆︎THIS⬆︎
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 02:42 PM
Jul 2021

Fucking Ronald Reagan:

"Government is not the solution to our problem, government is the problem."

and

"The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I'm from the Government, and I'm here to help."

Insult to injury: American morons chose this prick over Jimmy Carter, no less.

hardluck

(657 posts)
19. Started with the Newhall Shootout in 1970
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 02:15 PM
Jul 2021

In which four CHPs were killed, one of which was killed while trying to reload his service revolver from a dump pouch. This led to the rapid introduction of speed loaders, and well as tactical changes emphasizing officer safety. Police started to transition from revolvers to semiautos with the introduction of the Beretta M92 by the military and its adoption by the LAPD. Many of the modern 9mm semiautos were developed and introduced around this time, including the Glock.

The Miami shootout in 1986 also had a significant impact of officer equipment and tactics. One of the perps was armed with a mini-14, while most of the agents were still armed with revolvers or 9mm semiautos. They were at a significant disadvantage. One of the agents was able to shoot the suspect with a 9mm but it failed to penetrate to his heart (was shot from the side). It was a fatal shot but he kept in the fight and continued to engage and shoot the agents. After that, the FBI went to a more powerful handgun round, the 10mm. But it ended up being too difficult for many to shoot and a lower power round, the 40 cal. was developed.

As others have mentioned, the North Hollywood shootout then brought AR style rifles down from dedicated SWAT team to the officer in the field (or in the case of the LAPD to designated sergeants).

As to some of the other equipment, the pepper spray and tasers were developed as less than lethal devices to supplement and eventually, in essence, replace the traditional side-handled baton. The baton is a good weapon for many instances but sticks take a lot of training and continual practice and frankly, the police departments are not very good at providing that training, and many of the officers are not interested in it. It's easier to provide the quick training on using pepper spray and tasers.

Ford_Prefect

(7,998 posts)
20. Ask the surviving Koch brother and his pals who fund weaponry mayhem, who invested in Dick Cheney's
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 02:15 PM
Jul 2021

plan to militarize police forces, and who've bought seat after seat in Congress, the Senate and the Federal bench.

WhiskeyGrinder

(22,718 posts)
27. Yep, they've moved on to ducks.
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 02:50 PM
Jul 2021
https://www.nbc15.com/2021/07/05/marshall-police-fire-ems-rescue-ducklings-sewer/

MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - The Village of Marshall Police Department, Fire Department and EMS saved four ducklings from a sewer Monday morning.

At approximately 9:00 am. Marshall Police got a call from a Kwik Trip employee about the sound of baby ducks coming from a sewer grate in a Kwik Trip parking lot, according to Marshall Fire.

An officer arrived on scene and contacted Marshall Fire Department for assistance.

The four ducklings were successfully rescued and returned to their mother about a half hour later, Marshall Fire said.
 

YMB

(63 posts)
25. You can thank the war on drugs as far as the police
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 02:41 PM
Jul 2021

getting military equipment along with an influx of used military gear left over from the gulf war that no one wanted to scrap. events like the north hollywood shootouts (as well as other events in the 70's and 80's) showed a need for more firepower in certain circumstances (which was overall a bad call), but that was also not a normal situation where those individuals used already illegally self modified full auto weapons and home made body armor. Weapons like the AR15 didnt actually start taking off until after the 94-04' AWB which in combination of movies, video games and other forms of media helped push it further into the spot light. Though it was legal to buy the weapon almost as soon as it came on the scene in the 50's which was then converted to semi-auto versions after the 1968 gun control act.

AR15's have been around for over 70 years, but not until you started seeing more "tactical" versions that allowed for more options in combination of a new lifted ban on them, did they start to get popular in terms of the gun crowd (it was less about the NRA and their marketing). Prior to that there was no shortage of semi-auto 20-30round magazine fed rifles like the M1 carbines (which inside of 100yards carries similar ballistics to the 5.56), Mini-14's, VZ58's, G3's, AK's and FAL variants. Not to mention carbine variants of SMG's like the Beretta model 12's, UZI's, LF-57's ect. which started to all come about in the 40's and 50's. Not to mention WW2 guns like the Thompson and BAR's which were also legal to own as far back is the 1920's (which were also full auto to boot).

Initech

(100,359 posts)
41. When I saw the Police Militarization segment...
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 04:42 PM
Jul 2021

My first reaction was "holy fuck! How are people not rioting in the streets?"

jalan48

(13,982 posts)
30. The US is and has been an imperialistic nation for a long time.
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 03:25 PM
Jul 2021

The chickens have come home to roost.

quakerboy

(13,947 posts)
31. Lets put this where it belongs
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 03:25 PM
Jul 2021

The police.

They made their choices. And they actually have choices, unlike a large number of workers in the modern era.

Has the rate of police being killed or injured gone up over the time period described by this article for the militarization of police?

IE is it actually the guns? Or are they just an excuse for police to get more money, resources, power?

quakerboy

(13,947 posts)
51. In otherwords, in spite of a massive buying of weapons
Fri Jul 16, 2021, 02:36 AM
Jul 2021

Police are not dying.

In fact the numbers of police dying by gunfire are going down, despite the fact that the population has drastically increased. From the 50's to now, the population has roughly doubled, which means that the rates are going down even more than the graph shows.

So, this militarization of police is on the police (and the defense industry). No real need to look further, and removing guns from society likely wouldnt do anything to change the problem of police shooting people. They'd just move on to "I thought it was a knife"


I suspect looking at suicide rates and shooting incidents would give a better picture of the effect of guns on our society.

intrepidity

(7,503 posts)
33. Also, gangs
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 03:41 PM
Jul 2021

I grew up in L.A. in the 70s, so saw, personally, the rise of the Crips and the Bloods.

In addition to the shootouts mentioned above (Newhall, North Hollywood), plus the LA (King) riots, these seemed to me the elements that mostly contributed to the rise of militarization of the police.

No doubt the NRA jumped on board and did as you described, but I don't think that was the origin.

Amishman

(5,567 posts)
37. agreed, the rise of street gangs (in their modern form) and the drug trade would be my guess
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 03:51 PM
Jul 2021

And the two are not at all mutually exclusive as gangs tend to be significantly involved in the drug trade.

BigmanPigman

(51,802 posts)
35. When I watched Bowling For Columbine
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 03:48 PM
Jul 2021

Michael Moore said that the news/media is partly to blame too. Like you stated, the shift to urban fear was a marketing ploy and the media blew "fear" all out of proportion and got richer and richer. Then you see "reality" COPS type TV shows which adds to the massaging that "this is REALLY what is going on all over the US".

tenderfoot

(8,448 posts)
43. I remember one episode of Adam-12 where one of the officers got into HUGE TROUBLE for...
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 04:53 PM
Jul 2021

beating suspect.

Buzz cook

(2,477 posts)
44. The original NRA was formed to fight the current NRA
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 05:57 PM
Jul 2021

After the Civil War the common wisdom was that Union troops couldn't shoot straight. So former members of the Union army formed the NRA to train marksmen in case there was another national emergency such as another civil war.

Many members of the current NRA are trumpers, many of them are calling for civil war.

So where's Ambrose Burnside when we need him?

live love laugh

(13,373 posts)
46. Seems convenient that the promulgation is a two-fer.
Tue Jul 13, 2021, 10:17 PM
Jul 2021

While the industry makes $$$$ the cities which are largely democratic are being devastated by the influx.

Makes me wonder whether it’s only about the money.

Marthe48

(17,387 posts)
49. Late 1960's
Wed Jul 14, 2021, 09:59 AM
Jul 2021

my brother had a poster hangin in his room. Showed a cop in riot gear on a motorcycle, flipping the bird. The caption was "To serve and Protect"

It summed up a lot of things that happened during anti-war protests.
Police are there to protect the status quo. If you are not defending the status quo, the police will stand against you.

malthaussen

(17,304 posts)
50. There's an episode of Hill Street Blues, circa 1981...
Wed Jul 14, 2021, 11:22 AM
Jul 2021

... Furillo and Hunter are attending a gun show. Hunter wants to buy a couple of grenade launchers for the precinct, but Furillo demurs, reminding Howard that they could buy kevlar vests for the entire precinct for the same price.

Little did he know that in a few years they'd have both.

-- Mal

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