Local Iowa Police do not need military tactical equipment
It is unfathomable to consider purchasing more tactical equipment when there is no reasonable oversight in place
In my profession as a musician, watching a video of my past performances is essential to provide insight into what may or may not work in my favor.
If you look at the video of the June 17 Johnson County Supervisory Board meeting, you will have many opportunities to witness how communication may or may not work between council and the sheriff’s office and also between council and the community at large.
You may notice from the video that the Sheriff was unable or unwilling to respond if there is a consistent policy across all agencies that share the Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicle (MRAP) as to what might constitute appropriate circumstances for its deployment.
On the video, you will also see the sheriff refusing to explain in detail what type of training is required to operate the MRAP. Either he doesn’t know or he won’t say it. Both are bad.
You will see the sheriff dismiss concerns about the weight of the MRAP (26 tons) by declaring that it is “lighter than a fire engine”. The reality is that damage to roads and property is one of the main reasons many communities have already phased out similar armored transports in their towns.
You will see the sheriff refuse to exclude the use of armored transport in future protest scenarios, although you will also see the sheriff admit that MRAPs have poor visibility, are difficult to use, and there is little recourse. reasonable if the vehicle were to tip over as they usually do.
You will see that the board of directors is almost unanimously in agreement, with the exception of supervisor Jon Green who was wise enough to take time for more in-depth research, to entertain the sheriff investigating a “replacement” vehicle. who still looks a lot like an average kid in the neighborhood. Tank.
The sheriff has not demonstrated his ability or desire to be flexible or transparent, so it is inconceivable that the board would seriously consider purchasing more tactical equipment when there is no reasonable oversight in square.
When you view the video of the meeting, you will also see a concerned resident, Dan Kauble, making a well-prepared and compassionate statement. You will see Dan severely reprimanded for incivility when he slightly exceeds his allotted three minutes, regardless of the fact that there were no other members of the community waiting to speak.
In my opinion, incivility is more correctly attributed to an official who comes before you and who refuses to respond to the concerns of the community. These concerns, it should be noted, are shared by so many communities across our country that there are dozens of ACLU lawsuits on the same subject.
The local police do not need military tactical equipment. The deployment of this equipment creates unjustified and significant risks for physical and psychological well-being.
There are a myriad of historical and current examples of groups of people such as immigrants, people of color, certain religious communities, political activists and homeless people who are statistically more likely to be targeted and injured by police. carrying military tactical equipment.
I do not agree to the militarization of our neighborhoods. Several board members say they agree. They have budgetary power. They should use it.
Tara McGovern is a resident of Johnson County.