Officers of the Piece


Various brands of what’s known as “Warrior Training” have become popular with police departments across the US. As described in the Harvard Law Journal (May 7, 2019), “For Warriors, hyper-vigilance offers the best chance for survival. Officers learn to treat every individual they interact with as an armed threat and every situation as a deadly force encounter in the making.”

The cop that killed Philando Castile in a routine (but unnecessary) traffic stop had recently gone through this training when he opened fire Castile for trying to comply with his order. When the mayor of Minneapolis recently banned the practice in the city’s police department, the head of the police union immediately offered it to his members for free. It appears that he’s backed down for now. The warrior mentality is so deeply ingrained in police culture, language and practice that it is cultivated as a central principle of police identity.

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