Equip police more like Batman and less like G.I. Joe

The proliferation of certain military equipment (this paper focuses on camouflage uniforms, armored vehicles, and assault rifles) among police departments has had adverse effects on the mission of policing. These items were designed for the context of war and they have little policing utility and often substitute for more appropriate tools from an officer’s “utility belt.” More troubling, “Maslow’s Law”—that when one is using a hammer, everything looks like a nail—has increased violent interactions between civilians and police and made officers’ jobs more difficult.

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 Image credit: chris howard

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