The Disturbing Messages in Police Recruiting VideosBy Radley Balko
Apr. 17, 2014
1.Trump is Right: GOP Debate Audience is Packed Full of Republican Donors
2.Government Agents Hunt Woman Down After Seeing Facebook Picture Of Her Rehabilitating Baby Squirrels
3.Florida Cops Unload On Man Holding Gun Fearing Home Invasion After Knock On Door At 1AM, Had Wrong House
4.VIDEO: Americans Express Support When Told Obama Had 'Launched A Preemptive Nuclear Strike On Russia'
5.Mandatory Mental Illness Screening and The Drive to Confiscate Firearms
6.Three Reasons to Be Worried About The Economy
7.Miami Police Retaliate Against Female Driver Who Filmed Herself Pulling Over Cop
8.Trump On Debate Audience: "They Gave Me 20 Tickets"
According to the New Mexico Watchdog Web site, this is a new recruiting video being used by the police department in Hobbs, New Mexico.
Note the aspects of policing the video emphasizes: Shooting stuff. K-9 enforcement. Nabbing the bad guys. The SWAT team. This is the first step in the process.
(There’s also the separate but related question of why Hobbs -- a town of 35,000 people -- needs a SWAT team in the first place. As the Watchdog reports, the SWAT team has its own page on the Hobbs department Web site, complete with a video of SWAT cops shooting and destroying things, set to heavy metal music. The statement in the video that “The rules of engagement of SWAT are simple: Defeat the enemy . . . any way you can” is also troubling. The mission of a SWAT team ought to be to resolve volatile situations without force and violence whenever possible.)
Note, too, what’s missing from the recruiting video: Public service. Cops walking beats. Community policing. Helping people.
Now ask yourself: What sort of person would be attracted to a career in law enforcement based on the images and activities depicted in that video? And is that the sort of person you’d want wearing a badge and carrying a gun in your neighborhood?