By Nathan Barton
Trump has announced that his administration is removing the restrictions imposed by the former squatter at 1600 PA transferring military equipment to “civilian” police departments across the nation.
As any of us would expect, the Fifty States are divided in response to this, just as they were in the original restrictions to the 1033 program. On the one hand, we have civil libertarians and libertarians (such as the Free Thought Project) screaming about the militarization of police and its impact on civil society. Among other things, there is a list on-line that provides hundreds or thousands of pages of data about what has already been handed out as “welfare” to the nation’s cities and counties. (See my footnote below for some ideas on that.)
And of course, there were the “law-and-order” and similar groups singing hosannas of praise for “being tough on crime.” And asking for more.
Fully recognizing that I am going to tread on toes (“Again, Nathan? You and your rabble rousing!”), I am going to be a contrary liberty lover, and explain why this transfer of military equipment is a good idea. Or at least not the horrific idea so many people condemn it as.
- Many police forces in the Fifty States are not “going to be” militarized by this new giveaway. Why? Because they are already Ferguson, Missouri; Standing Rock in North Dakota, and many other incidents in recent years (and going back decades) show that the police forces ARE military occupation forces already: heavily armed and armored, with a whole lot of modern and still valuable military tech.
- Giving this stuff away weakens the FedGov para-military effort and establishment. Every M16 and M14 given to a state, a county, or a town’s police force is one more weapon that can NOT be given to the National Park Service police or the Surgeon General’s Riot Control Police or FDA Inspectors. Or whatever new alphabet storm-trooper agencies DC comes up with after the next terrorist attack.
- Giving this stuff away and putting it in hands of local police departments often moves it into the control of people who don’t necessarily like the FedGov, especially not the DEA and FBI, and who will at least think twice before obeying orders from DC. Not saying that they are constitutionalists or lovers of liberty, but given a choice between more heavily arming the Bureau of Land Management or Department of Housing and Urban Development, or arming Sheriff Johnny Jones of Riverside County and his deputies, or Chief Sammy Smith of Anytown Municipal Police Department, which would YOU want?
- Having this stuff stored locally means that when the balloon goes up, it is far more likely to be used to arm people fighting against tyranny and actually defending their communities.
This last is probably the most important point, and needs more explanation. (And also has a downside.)
Standard principles of guerrilla warfare and revolutionary/counter-revolutionary warfare include the fact that (especially in the initial stages of the armed conflict), the major and best supply line for those fighting AGAINST the establishment/tyranny/occupation enemy is that very enemy themselves. Whether it is done by raids on their offices, combat outposts, armories, or by ambushes of their actual supply convoys, it is a whole lot easier to “liberate” a dozen rifles and a couple thousand rounds of ammo for them from a police station or sheriff’s office or sub-station, than to get them from a firebase or a permanent military installation. Especially if you have some sympathizers which are IN those offices or stations. (See item 3.)
Based on what South Dakota has gotten, tens of thousands of good battle rifles (M14s) and adequate assault rifles (M16s or M4s) plus thousands of pistols, hundreds of grenade launcher, and other very valuable defensive weapons are now spread across the country. Add that to Reserve Centers and Army National Guard Armories, and you have just significantly improved the ability of the Fifty States and associated dependencies to defend themselves – even against the FedGov itself. Add that to the tens (or hundreds) of thousands of AR15s, AKM, AK47, .30-06 and .3030 rifles and millions of handguns in the nation, and couple with millions of us who are veterans of the last four decades of war, and we are not bad off.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I don’t think we are going to get invaded by North Korea or even Mexico or the UN forces massing in Canada (<grin>). No, I think that the threat that our communities face today is more likely to be what it has been most of our history: internal. Either barbarian raids, “slave” uprisings, or tyrannical government. Today, the barbarians (if that is the appropriate name) are internal and not (necessarily) organized as tribes: the social justice warriors and neo-Nazis and Black Lives Matter and street gangs. The slaves (outside of the huge prison inmate population) are lower working class wage-slaves eager for loot as much as liberation and seeking reparations for the injustice they and their ancestors endured (real or perceived), and the tyrannical government is a lot more in the style of Honest Abe (and Congress) than of King George III (and Parliament). (There might be a fourth kind of threat: the corporate one, like the steel and railroad barons of the late 1800s and early 1900s.)
“But, Nathan,” you protest, “all of those threats can get to the same scattered militarized-police stockpiles as lovers and defenders of liberty can. And they also have their own arms.”
So? Life isn’t fair. Admittedly I think that there are few SJW or street gang or BLM types with much experience with semi-automatic rifles, or with the discipline to use them effectively. (Not “none” for there are some reports of such groups, as well as Islamists, here in the Fifty States, preparing for a shooting war and that there are veterans who are helping them.) But…
In fact, many of the SJW of today, those people in their late teens, early twenties, and from privileged urban and suburban areas. They have been “inoculated” against using weapons – taught from birth how evil they are and how only cops and soldiers (outside of the country, of course) should have them. So these clowns are going to be very sad clowns, afraid of the weapons that they have to use (although I am sure that they will overcome those fears very quickly). And might actually do as well as your average 5th or 6th generation Muslim with the “Allahu Akbar – pray and spray” philosophy. Even against people defending their homes and families and friends who haven’t fired a shot in four decades, I don’t think the SJWs will do any better as REAL warriors than they do at so many other things. But there is no reason to let them level the playing field, either: the more armed and better trained peace loving and (mostly) law abiding people are, the better for the outcome.
That said, let me add one more thing.
Blood in the streets of America is already happening, but I am sure, inevitably, that it will get much worse fairly quickly. There is war now – low-key and (if not exactly non-violent) relatively bloodless. But that will – that IS – changing. Society is rotted to the core, and “the center cannot stand.” As a people, as fifty once-sovereign nations, we have become immoral and corrupt, and our wealth and power has fueled that immorality and corruption.
The “leadership” in DC and the Fifty State capitols is rotten, as stupid and foolish as any collective leadership can be, and incapable of changing. Which means that they will be yet one more frail column holding back the tide. Obviously, they will not go quietly into the darkness, any more than their street mobs and lackeys in the media and the schools and too many boardrooms will. They will be the ones to initiate the violence, and they will ensure that the propaganda mills place the blame for the violence firmly on their enemies, which includes every person who believes in any real liberty and who does not wholeheartedly bend their knees AND bow their heads to their betters and their masters.
Every round, every weapon, is critical. Let us make lemonade out of lemons and accept this gift of weapons from DC.
Mama’s Note: I tend to agree, Nathan. Just want to add two things: All this equipment and armament is paid for out of the blood and treasure of the productive people in this country. And, unfortunately, the non-voluntary government can extract that from us pretty much whenever they please. If they “give away” anything, nothing stops them from obtaining more.
The good news is that many small police and sheriff’s departments no longer want these things. I talked to our local sheriff about this a while ago, and he said most folks would not believe the strings attached. And, most of this stuff is not actually a gift at all, but loaned. The vehicles especially are a bad deal because the locals must keep them maintained – very expensive – and yet they can be recalled by the government any time.