Friday, February 23, 2007

3 Articles Worth Reading

Report on an FBI Study. This is a must read for residents. Think of it as survival training. Know your enemy! The FBI interviewed 50 police officers and 43 felons. Their goal was to learn more about violent encounters between police and criminals. Their conclusions are shocking.

Here are some points that I thought were particularly interesting:
* All but one gun was obtained illegally. Handguns were the weapon of choice, but beyond that, criminals used whatever gun they could lay their hands on. Availability was key. Oh yeah, when asked if there were any laws that hindered them in arming themselves, they laughed in the face of the researcher.
* A lot of the criminals have EXTENSIVE experience with firearms. More than most of the police officers. Also, they don't necessarily aim, they just throw up a bunch of rounds and go for the hit. Their less sophisticated technique is actually more effective, in terms of hitting the target, than that of the police.
* Criminals have weapons concealed on them (or their girlfriends) at all times. They never use holsters. They tend to keep it in the waistband. Since they don't use holsters, they must constantly check to make sure the gun hasn't shifted. This is a way to spot if someone is packing and can give a keen observer valuable warning of impending danger.
* Police officers are generally extremely reluctant to shoot. Even when they are put into a situation where deadly force is authorized, most hesitate.
* Here's a quote to end with: "Offenders typically displayed no moral or ethical restraints in using firearms," the report states. "In fact, the street combat veterans survived by developing a shoot-first mentality."

That article got me thinking. Just think about the comparison between a cop and thug. The cops are outmatched every time they face a thug. Most of the thugs have extensive battle experience, where most cops are rookies. A thug who's survived numerous gun battles is treated like a recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor. A cop who has comparable experience is treated like a thug. He's a PR nightmare. Anytime he shoots again, even if it's someone like Ivory Harris, he will immediately come under suspicion. I know of one NOPD officer who has shot several suspects over the course of his 20-odd year career. Killed them each time. With the exception those dozen or so instances over a 20 year career, he never drew his gun once. Every single person he shot was in the commission of a major crime. NOPD took him off the streets and behind a desk because it was bad PR. He was able to extract one concession from the brass, though. His new job was training new NOPD officers how to shoot.1

I'll bet you $20 he was a Marine. Wish we had more people like that in New Orleans. Take the Thug quotient down a notch.

All about the sectarian strife in Iraq. A real eye opener. The first 2 paragraphs just grab you. From Time.

1It's really unfortunate, but I'm really hesitant to ever print the name of any good NOPD officer. It's almost guaranteed to get him/her into trouble. That's the way NOPD works. The tallest tree gets chopped down. Thank you, Warren Riley.

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