RANGER AGAINST WAR: Tracer Burnout <

Friday, March 02, 2007

Tracer Burnout

Ranger is starting to believe that police actually need tanks, Armored Personnel Carriers, attack helicopters and full combat gear. Since watching NCIS, the Unit, Numbers, 24, Criminal Minds, et. al., it is obvious that our police engage in daily combat with terrorists.

Wait...WRONG. To the best of Ranger's knowledge there have been no domestic shootouts with terrorists. Television is not reality. So why are police forces becoming more Gestapo-like daily? Check out the above ads from this month's Guns and Ammo magazine to get a runway look at the new police chic:

"Sapphire--they're a cop's best friend." The ad states these sights are standard issue for hundreds of police departments, federal agencies and competitive shooters alike. And Ranger asks: Since when do competitive shooters engage targets at night? Look at the policemen decked out in their ninja-like all black combat gear. Sure makes me feel a whole lot safer--how about you?

Steiner features another glimpse of the black-clad police snipers on the bottom right of their ad.

But the Stag Arms is my fav. It shows two policemen in full combat gear. Notice the policeman with the model 2 MSRP $925, and notice the tip of the tracer round (just under the "I" in POLICE on his vest.) I hope it's a him, otherwise hormone therapy is called for.

Both rifles are advertised with chrome-lined bores. Why do police need that military option? Chrome-lined bores are only useful for sustained automatic fire, as they prevent the bore from being eroded by excess heat and wear. Does anyone envision our police engaging in military-type firefights? This is not a police function.

Why do police need automatic weapons, and especially, why tracer ammo? Police, unlike the military, have no need for tracers, and one hopes that police are firing aimed, restrained-type fire on criminals.

Tracers are a useful tool when firing full automatic fire, which is not what police should be doing. Ranger can't remember the last time a U.S. police station has been overrun by enemy troops.

Wild spray and pray has no place in police scenarios. This stuff is so glamorous and makes peckers so hard that little blood gets to the brain, hence my argument against their employment.


Blogger Mike said...

When I try to apply the title of your post to these advertisements I am struck by the feeling that this kind of thing you see in these advertisements are top-down rather than consumer-directed.

What I mean is this. For all the bad things that can be said of individual police officers, I don't think that individual officers have the intention of transforming the police into some kind of counter-guerrilla squad which has coercive technology that is many times disproportional to the dangers posed by American citizens. I just can't imagine that this is on their brains.

So I reason that this must come above, partly from the Bush administration, partly from all these companies and interests associated with the military-industrial complex.

This kind of thing is particularly shocking given the growing divide between the majority of Americans and Bush, regarding many issues not limited to Iraq. It seems like the Bushiites see coercive technology as some kind of panacea to the problem of eroding authority on every front, as some kind of "insurance" which guarantees their political and ideological survival.

Friday, March 2, 2007 at 8:24:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...


First, I do wish to acknowledge the many fine men in blue who execute their duties with equanimity. However, having said that, there are many more conservative thinkers in the force, as in the military, than liberals. Neither profession tends to attract liberal thinkers.

Given that, the tendency in both corporate cultures is toward groupthink, which does does not encourage liberal interpretations of the Constitution.

It appears that this administration gives a nod to the militarization of our police force, and is in fact militarizing the border police. Neither of these groups (police or military) is equipped--nor do they possess charters--to cross-fertilize.

In total agreement that the "Bushiites" do see brutish actions as defining some sort of moral authority for their side. Many of the police never served in combat arms, and their participation on the force is a sublimation of their non-participation on the field.

Therefore, these sorts introduce the soldier attitude into scenarios where it may be counter-productive, and in fact, this military mindset is probably counterproductive to most street situations.

Police should protect and serve and not intimidate the general public. Federal law enforcement is there for the benefit of the government, so a different venue there. I think here is where the confusion in the law enforcement world resides.

I appreciate your thoughtful comments.

Friday, March 2, 2007 at 11:00:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would only observe, in adding to your perceptive comments, that "law enforcement officers" used to be called peace officers, whose mission really was to protect and serve -- a much more limited and less obtrusive objective than "law enforcement". GSJ

Saturday, March 3, 2007 at 10:34:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lurch said...

We need a fully militarized police because more and more of our active duty and reserve (incl NG) forces will be tied up in Middle Eastern occupation fornthen next 15 years (or until whenever Iraqi and Iranian oil runs out.)

There will be no other forces available to enforce the martial law coming before the 2008 elections.

Saturday, March 3, 2007 at 8:21:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...


Yes, those "wascally wabbits" known as the American public...

Must be able to keep them under lockdown should they start getting such silly notions as civil rights and the like. Might muss up the whole shooting match.

Sunday, March 4, 2007 at 2:06:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Interrobang said...

Fascinating blog you have here. Personally, the thing I find most disquieting about these ads is how they seem to be an extension of the fascist aesthetic (that is a term of art, incidentally) that is becoming prevalent in popular-culture art and design.

The fascist aesthetic is a type of idealised realist art style (similar to Soviet Realism) that has as its aim the glorification of fascist goals, such as militarisation and the merging of corporate and state power. I'm seeing inklings of it in everything from excessively Photoshopped models in fashion magazines (presenting an idealised form of womanhood) to the prevalence of camo-patterned and (para)military-style clothing in popular fashion.

While this "new fascist aesthetic" is almost certainly more subtle than its German and Italian counterparts of a half-century or more ago, it seems to share many of the same characteristics. These ads that you show, to me represent a very high order glorification of war, merger of state and corporate power (by depicting a conscious imitation of military gear for policing purposes), and the vanishing line between "military" and "civilian." That this "new fascist aesthetic" ethos even exists is disturbing to say the least.

Thanks for listening.

Monday, March 5, 2007 at 4:05:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...


Thanks for writing. I enjoyed reading your insights.

I see the parallels you draw to Soviet agitprop. Also, the seepage of combat-chic down the runways the past few years. It is the slow, inexorable creep of militarism into our society.

There are propagandistic implications in visual media all around. The trend toward fascism is disturbing, and people seem to be oblivious to it, or at least, blithely accept it as a necessary protection. A safety that is a bit constricting, but tolerable to the many.

Thanks for bringing the new perspective. Our readers always surprise us.

Monday, March 5, 2007 at 7:04:00 PM GMT-5  

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