The Police-Industrial-Entertainment Complex

December 2, 2013 in News

Radley Balko | In my book on police militarization, I have a section on the role pop culture has played in blurring the line between cops and soldiers, particularly with the onset of reality(ish) shows like A&E’s Dallas SWAT or Spike TV’s DEA. Over at the blog Gun Culture 2.0, sociologist David Yamane…

The Good News About Race And Crime In America

July 24, 2013 in News

Radley Balko | The death of Trayvon Martin and subsequent acquittal of George Zimmerman has given rise to particularly cynical, pessimistic public discourse about race, crime, and violence in America. Civil rights leaders and progressive activists have cited Zimmerman’s acquittal and the proliferation…

How We Got Warrior Cops

July 13, 2013 in News

Lucy Steigerwald | High-profile police response to terrorism threats – as in the case of the Boston bombing – grab headlines, but it wasn’t the paranoias of our post-9/11 world that made cops often indistinguishable from an army. It started earlier. It started with the war on drugs.

“Why did you shoot me? I was reading a book”: The new warrior cop is out of control

July 9, 2013 in News

Radley Balko | Sal Culosi is dead because he bet on a football game — but it wasn’t a bookie or a loan shark who killed him. His local government killed him, ostensibly to protect him from his gambling habit. Several months earlier at a local bar, Fairfax County, Virginia, detective David Baucum…