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Sun Jan 27, 2013, 05:53 AM

How the NRA Went From Best Friend of the Nation's Police to Harsh Enemy of Law Enforcement

http://www.alternet.org/how-nra-went-best-friend-nations-police-harsh-enemy-law-enforcement?akid=9979.277129.cAtWbd&rd=1&src=newsletter783906&t=3



For years, the National Rifle Association cultivated a reputation as an unbeatable political powerhouse—a legacy that was challenged on Thursday with the introduction of major new gun control legislation in the U.S. Senate banning more than 100 military-style guns.

But the NRA’s tough reputation unwinds if one delves into the history behind its harshest rhetoric—which began in the 1970s and escalated as former allies, notably America’s police, rejected its increasingly militant demands. What today’s NRA would like to forget is how its unbending extremism led to a losing streak in Congress two decades ago, a period whose gun politics echo today but gun controls nevertheless passed.

Perhaps the best way to understand how the NRA is not the all-powerful lobby it seeks to portray itself as is to look at how the organization went from being a "best friend" of the nation’s police to a political enemy of law enforcement, from federal agents at the top of the ladder to local police chiefs and police unions below. As it became more outspoken and unwilling to compromise over insignificant gun controls, it became the group it remains today, vainly claiming to be the last line against impending government tryanny.

“Once you go down that road, how do you walk that rhetoric back?” said Robert Spitzer, a gun rights historian and SUNY-Cortland’s political science department chairman.

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Arrow 38 replies Author Time Post
Reply How the NRA Went From Best Friend of the Nation's Police to Harsh Enemy of Law Enforcement (Original post)
xchrom Jan 2013 OP
truebluegreen Jan 2013 #1
jmg257 Jan 2013 #2
davidn3600 Jan 2013 #3
Ikonoklast Jan 2013 #6
jazzimov Jan 2013 #8
davidn3600 Jan 2013 #9
jazzimov Jan 2013 #27
jmg257 Jan 2013 #10
jazzimov Jan 2013 #21
nadinbrzezinski Jan 2013 #14
jazzimov Jan 2013 #18
nadinbrzezinski Jan 2013 #19
jazzimov Jan 2013 #25
Hoyt Jan 2013 #28
jazzimov Jan 2013 #7
jmg257 Jan 2013 #11
nadinbrzezinski Jan 2013 #13
jmg257 Jan 2013 #15
nadinbrzezinski Jan 2013 #16
jmg257 Jan 2013 #23
nadinbrzezinski Jan 2013 #30
jmg257 Jan 2013 #32
loli phabay Jan 2013 #33
loli phabay Jan 2013 #24
jmg257 Jan 2013 #26
loli phabay Jan 2013 #29
jmg257 Jan 2013 #31
jazzimov Jan 2013 #17
loli phabay Jan 2013 #22
jazzimov Jan 2013 #35
loli phabay Jan 2013 #20
samsingh Jan 2013 #4
aikoaiko Jan 2013 #5
legaleagle_45 Jan 2013 #12
TheKentuckian Jan 2013 #34
Kolesar Jan 2013 #36
TheKentuckian Jan 2013 #38
Kolesar Jan 2013 #37

Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 11:56 AM

1. I'm ready for Law Enforcement to STEP UP

and call out in NRA in public, loudly and repeatedly.

That is all.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 12:03 PM

2. Ironic how LE didn't want the Glock becoming legal, but then flocked

To use them as duty weapons by the bucketloads.

I wonder why they changed their minds? Could it be they were comparatively cheaper and still highly reliable?

Good for them, but bad for civilians? Doesn't make much sense.

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Response to jmg257 (Reply #2)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 12:09 PM

3. Just like all these gun control proposals all exempt the police

Why do police need large magazines? Why do retired police need large magazines?

How many bullets does it take to subdue a suspect?

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Response to davidn3600 (Reply #3)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 01:19 PM

6. Escalation Of Force.

But you already know that.

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Response to davidn3600 (Reply #3)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 01:39 PM

8. This is beginning to sound anti-LE.

Not a good position to take, IMHO.

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Response to jazzimov (Reply #8)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 01:45 PM

9. Im just sick and tired of the government exempting themselves from their own laws

I see it in almost every bill that goes through congress now. Someone is always exempt.

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Response to davidn3600 (Reply #9)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:45 PM

27. I can see that to an extent, but

let's not compare apples to oranges here.

It's one thing to pass a law that affects every corporation except ABC Corp. It's an entirely different thing to pass a law that exempts government LE agencies.

It also puts to rest that old "If guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns" meme. Now it reads "...only outlaws and those sworn to fight them will have guns". Much better, don't you think?

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Response to jazzimov (Reply #8)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 01:51 PM

10. Hmm...maybe you haven't met enough of them. Try going to a cop's

'funeral celebration' at the local pub and see how many you think should have special priveges - especially related to firearms.

Like any profession...LE gets their fair share of asses...and then some.

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Response to jmg257 (Reply #10)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:32 PM

21. Well, actually I've had a lot of interaction with them

via my previous job positions - although I'll admit very little recently.

I did find out that Cops are individuals, with individual opinions and individual personalities.

But they all seemed to agree that they did not like criminals shooting at them with better firearms than they were allowed to carry.

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Response to jazzimov (Reply #8)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 02:02 PM

14. Welcome to DU

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #14)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:27 PM

18. Thanks! Actually,

I'm a long-time "lurker" who was always just a "reader" and I forget what actually prompted me to register and reply.

But I will say that I'm glad I did!

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Response to jazzimov (Reply #18)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:28 PM

19. Place can be addictive, fair warning.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #19)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:38 PM

25. Thanks for the warning.

I'm already addicted to reading it, I'm guessing it will be more so, now.

But the only way to face our addictions is head-on, at least in my experience. But I'm HOPING that I will not let it interfere with my life but allow it to enhance it.

At least, that's my HOPE!

We'll see what the reality is.

Thanks, again!

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Response to davidn3600 (Reply #3)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:47 PM

28. I think police face different issues than typical member of gun culture,

Even in their most paranoid view of the threats they face walking into a family restaurant, church, public park, down city streets, etc.

When the so-called law-abiding citizens quit arming up and training to kill people, the police can relax and bit.

Besides, are you afraid of the police and armed to the teeth to defend yourself against them? And, no, I hardly think police are always right. But the gun culture arming up to fight the police isn't rational.

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Response to jmg257 (Reply #2)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 01:37 PM

7. I can tell you what I was told by a Metro LEO,

they embraced it because they were tired of the "bad guys" being better armed than they were, because there were no gun controls.

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Response to jazzimov (Reply #7)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 01:53 PM

11. Understood...seems LE was usually a bit behind the latest and greatest.

Once Glock started cutting them special deals, sure hard to resist.

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Response to jmg257 (Reply #11)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 02:01 PM

13. No, it's not the special deals...that be Beretta by the way

It's finding yourself with a 38 special and the bad guys shooting back with MAC -10. Police forces are extremely conservative in changing side arms. They are extremely conservative, period.

They changed side arms after a few hundred officers were killed by superior fire power.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #13)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 02:14 PM

15. No that was Glock...letting depts buy their pistols for $300 piece. Free armourer classes.

I think I recall S&W trying to get in on the action when their new lines came out around the same time, but with trade ins(??)

Most already had wondernines by then (1990sh) and were looking at the .40s soon thanks to the FBI. But the dept did dump the issue .357s for Glocks, as did plenty of other PDs, when offered that deal. Especially with the NY triggers.

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Response to jmg257 (Reply #15)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:19 PM

16. That is why SDPD has a deal with Beretta

Not Glock, and officers who use Glocks bought them themselves at market rates.

Yup.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #16)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:36 PM

23. Not around here...plenty of PDs took that Glock deal...$300

Was a special price through the dept...yup.

Offered both Full size and compacts for off duty. This officer actually tried replacing his 92 and 92c with those cheaper Glocks...not so impressed with the grip angle enough to make it worthwhile in the long run. Plenty of guys loved theirs though...especially at those prices. Had a transition day for qualifying at the range with our newly trained 'armourer'. And of course we were able to have a few dept issues for sign out, much better then the revolvers they replaced...a few guys took advantage of that too, instead of buying their own.

Other local PDs went through the same thing as Glock made their way around.

Yup.

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Response to jmg257 (Reply #23)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:52 PM

30. And local PDs issue Berrettas

And officers buy their own if they decide to use something else.

It's not universal...yup.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #30)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:56 PM

32. Ha...agreed! WE win!! :) (I'd go Beretta). nt

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Response to jmg257 (Reply #32)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:58 PM

33. lol glock for me

 

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Response to jmg257 (Reply #15)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:37 PM

24. the testing found that 40 cal with hollow points gave excellent stopping power with little through a

 

And through so a lot of depts transition fromm the 9 to 40.

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Response to loli phabay (Reply #24)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:44 PM

26. I was really pushing for that change. The 9mm was...problematic, as

No one could decide the best round after the FBI Miami fiasco. I still have issue boxes of 147gr subsonic stuff around here, as well as the LE only +p+ stuff.

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Response to jmg257 (Reply #26)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:48 PM

29. i just moved my ammo to a new locker i got for my home. about 200 boxes i need to go shooting lol

 

I use the federal hst in my glocks. Im not a big fan of 9mm and i have more confidence in the 40.

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Response to loli phabay (Reply #29)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:52 PM

31. With that HST (great stuff), I worried much less about the 9 then

In those 'old days'. But with capacity limits back in vogue...who knows?

Should have just kept the 10mm and been done!

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Response to jmg257 (Reply #11)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:22 PM

17. The guy I talked to was a "front line flunkie"

who had nothing to do with any "deals", special or otherwise.

He was just glad to have a fighting chance - such as it was.

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Response to jazzimov (Reply #17)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:35 PM

22. cops were always outgunned. nowadays depts get that and are up arming

 

If you are engaging someone with a hunting rifle then the glovk and shotgun just dont have the range or accuracy at range that you need so the preferred weapon is a patrol rifle. It just depends on the dept whether that is a semi auto bolt action or full auto rifle.

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Response to loli phabay (Reply #22)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 04:17 PM

35. True. And the difference (we hope)

is coordination and control.

Let's face it, the LE is under a lot of restrictions because they are forced to play "by the rules" while the criminals have no rules.

These "rules" that the LEO is forced to act under is supposed to protect them, and in many cases it does. This is NOT the Wild Wild West as many people would prefer to portray it.

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Response to jmg257 (Reply #11)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 03:32 PM

20. the glock is also a reliable weapon when you are under stress with the trigger and internal safety

 

No need to worry about a safety when you can just draw and pull the trigger. That and the heavy discounts are very attractive. Most of the manufactuers offer good discounts from a couple of hundred of a glock to semi auto rifles at cost to full auto for around a grand.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 12:28 PM

4. people start to see through the nra lies and then the nra turns on them

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 12:40 PM

5. Law Enforcement was wrong about Glocks and airport scans


The plastic parts in a Glock do show up on airport scanners (even in the 1980s).

Plus, by weight, Glocks are comprised of mostly metal parts that set off metal detectors.

The hysteria about Glocks getting through airport screenings was wrong and I'm glad the NRA and others stood up to the lies

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Response to aikoaiko (Reply #5)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 01:55 PM

12. Plastic guns

The hysteria was initiated by Jack Anderson and was false then as it is now. Anderson's source for this faulty information was in part Josh Sugarmann of the Violence Policy Center. What it did do was provide free publicity to Glock which resulted in them capturing a large share of the handgun market. Many of the other claims in the article are also false or misleading For example, the "cop killer bullet" issue is based upon the fact that the original proposal would have resulted in the banning of almost all rifle ammunition popular in hunting, when the concern generating the legislation was almost exclusively handgun ammo. The NRA opposed the initial legislation then helped draft the subsequent legislation which targeted handgun ammo which was designed to penetrate body armor. The article also asserts "...bombing of the Oklahoma City federal building by NRA member Timothy McVeigh. " McVeigh had long since quite the NRA in protest over their compromising on gun control issues.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 04:05 PM

34. Law Enforcement is a scam to make police work a profit center, the focus should be peace keeping

but such doesn't dictate ever growing numbers, eternally increasing budgets, the latest technology, more and more laws and less and less strict observation of the rights and liberties of a free people nor does such create more dangerous work which dictates more money, less concern about individual rights, and more fancy cars and hi-tech.

The mission should be maintaining the peace and making sure one person's rights do not cause another to lose theirs, that it is it. The rest is to move money and extract wealth, self determination, and productivity from the many for the benefit of the few like about everything else.

Take away the vice garbage, "Terry Stops" aka looking for trouble where none was clearly present, unconstitutional roadblocks, and speed traps and the budgets and missions make little sense and by the way the danger to the police falls off the charts.

Power and authority should come from popular sufferance and be held in stewardship for the people, not from overwhelming force.
The badge and community support should many many times what any gun should and the only systemic reason it doesn't is from attempting enforcement of law that spawned an adverse reaction.

End the drug war and you'll find our cops are in very little danger and would have a much closer relationship with those they are supposed to protect and serve but actually do neither for them.

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Response to TheKentuckian (Reply #34)

Sun Jan 27, 2013, 05:08 PM

36. "less strict observation of the rights and liberties of a free people" -- What does that mean?

"Terry Stops" aka looking for trouble -- what does that mean?
The badge and community support should many many times what any gun should and the only systemic reason it doesn't is from attempting enforcement of law that spawned an adverse reaction. -- what does that mean?

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Response to Kolesar (Reply #36)

Mon Jan 28, 2013, 10:20 AM

38. I would think such things are self evident but perhaps things are too far off the rails to assume

Less strict observation of our rights and liberties is exactly the status of civil liberties in the US and extends well beyond the beat cop all the way to the Attorney General to the President and of course the courts.

Freedom of speech is now moved to free speech zones, Assembly is on the whim of officials not the people, our rights to be secure in our property and effects is an incredibly dubious proposition with warrantless wiretapping, traffic stops, "papers please" initiatives, probable cause deteriorating to reasonable suspicion which effectively results in the authority to search on "cause I wanted to", stop and frisk, harassing lawful citizens walking down the street, busting into homes is excused as long as the officer stipulates he "thought" he smelled weed and similar horse shit.

"Terry Stops" are nothing but looking for trouble. They are a court supported end around the need for a specific reason to interfere with the comings and goings of a citizen, in no way observed to be disturbing the peace and instead substituting that for a officer's "hunch" that "something may be amiss" allowing for a sanctioned shakedown of a citizen to give the officer and opportunity to support his/her "hunch". If the "hunch" turn out to be nothing then "no harm done" (officer nor department is accountable for the harassment) and if they find something then (usually vice bullshit) then the practice is "justified".

The final question should be very obvious, police should be acting as part of their community with the willing consent and cooperation of the community. Their authority and powers like politicians and I would argue our corporations (if our charter law wasn't such a farce) come from taking on a stewardship to protect and serve the people and backed up by building trust proving fresh day by day that the power and authority is properly vested. A police officer is not supposed to be apart and above those they serve and protect but of and for them. There should not be distrust of the police in a community (particularly this true of citizens living in areas that need peace keeping the most) but it is the reverse because they do not see themselves nor does their culture accept they are servants not masters and because their loyalty is to the system and property rather than the well being of the citizen.

Those badges should represent the oath of stewardship of power and authority rather than a shiny gang sign. The guns should be a tool of unfortunate last resort in dealing with a threat to life and liberty of a citizen rather than a symbol of their power and a death threat to enforce authority.

I find the entire relationship to be a gross distortion, a free people cannot be such under such an arrangement.

Cops aren't outgunned, they are on missions contrary to their purpose in a free society. 95% of the danger, the need for high tech equipment and fancy cars, and nearly all the adversarial position with their communities is attributable to prohibitions.

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