Just last week, MuckRock posted on its site about a FOIA request from California, detailing the military equipment given to school police forces. Just the fact that any military equipment is being given to school police should raise some serious questions, but the one that really stood out was that the LA School Police had been given three grenade launchers, along with 61 assault rifles and one MRAP (mine resistant vehicle -- the big scary looking armored vehicles that have become one of the key symbols of police militarization). Asked to explain itself, the LA School police chief, Steve Zipperman, claimed that the district had actually received the grenade launchers and the rifles all the way back in 2001 (though the MRAP is brand-spanking-new). But, he claimed, we shouldn't worry too much, because the police didn't think of them as "grenade launchers," but rather "ammunition launchers," and they were mainly kept around in case other police needed them...It really is time to demilitarize all of our police forces. Seriously. Especially the school cops.
Thursday, September 18, 2014
You Have To Wonder Who It Was Who Lost Their Mind
My suburban Sacramento school district doesn't even have its own police force. I used to work in another district that does, and that police force has been the source of voluminous bad press for that district. Imagine all that, times ten: