IPD to arm officers with M-16s

“We felt the need . . . to equip ourselves, for lack of a better term, to meet force with force. In order to provide safety to the public.”

Now I’ve been to Israel, where IDF soldiers are mandated to carry M-16s on their person at all times and in all places. Felt very safe as a matter of fact. But for some reason, this really, really bothers me:

Indianapolis Police Chief Jerry Barker said Thursday that the 218 rifles, known as M-16s, will be given to officers as the weapons are modified and as officers are trained to use them. He said training would occur at a range at Camp Atterbury in Edinburgh, a military base about 45 minutes south of Indianapolis.

Laird was killed and four other officers were wounded when Kenneth C. Anderson went on a shooting rampage. Anderson also killed his mother, Alice. Laird was killed when a bullet struck him just above his protective vest.

‘It’s taken the department quite some time to make it a reality, but we’re glad (they are) making strides to make it a reality,’ said Sgt. Vince Huber, president of the Fraternal Order of Police. ‘It’ll be a good start. The weapons will be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so no matter what time, you’ll have a weapon to match the criminal.’

Ranges at Camp Atterbury will accommodate the 100-plus yards needed when firing an M-16.

Yes I believe that law enforcement needs the proper equipment to defend the community against those who would do it harm. Yes I also believe that SKS’s against revolvers and shotguns isn’t a fair fight. That having been said, police officers carrying M-16s as part of their everyday dress?

Think of this. A traffic light goes out – and a police officer directs traffic out of his vehicle. . . M-16 casually dangled over his shoulder. Is that a good message to send to the community?

As I’ve said before, I’ve been to Israel and I know what having a population armed to the teeth looks like. I also know that Israel is under the constant threat of terrorism; real terrorism that involves suicide bombers and the like. Yes I know that against a guy with firepower the standard issue Glock isn’t going to do much. But call in for backup and bring SWAT over.

Something just doesn’t sound right about this. . . hopefully we can reconsider the options on precisely what police need to do in these rare situations where they are outgunned, rather than jump the fence and go to an opposite extreme.

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