Evergreene Digest: Jim Hightower | The Absurdly Dangerous Militarization of America’s Police

  • Police departments across the U.S. have a growing collection of toys used by the army.
  • Are the good people of Bastrop facing some imminent terrorist threat that warrants military equipment?
  • Swat-Team Nation

Jim Hightower, Other Words <http://otherwords.org&gt;

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January 7, 2014 | It’s still a mystery how Santa Claus got it down the chimney, but Bastrop got a Christmas present boys can only dream about: a big honking, steel-clad, Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) truck.

But Bastrop isn’t a 6-year-old boy, and this truck is no toy.

Bastrop is a Texas county of some 75,000 people, and its new MRAP is the real deal. The heavily armored military vehicle is just one of several versions of war tanks that have become the hot, must-have playthings of police departments all across the country.

Jim Hightower, an OtherWords columnist, is a radio commentator, writer, and public speaker. He’s also editor of the populist newsletter, The Hightower Lowdown.

Full story…


Swat-Team Nation, Sarah Stillman, New Yorker Magazine

August 8, 2013 | The moment the assault rifles surrounded her, Angie Wong was standing in a leafy art-gallery courtyard with her boyfriend, a lawyer named Paul Kaiser. It was just past 2 A.M., in May, 2008. Wong was twenty-two years old and was dressed for an evening out, in crisp white jeans, a white top, and tall heels that made it difficult not to wobble. The couple had stopped by a regular event hosted by the Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit (CAID), a red brick gallery with the aim of “turning Detroit into a model city,” and arrived to find a tipsy, jubilant scene: inside, gallerygoers were looking at art and dancing to a d.j.

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