Montgomery County Police Department got a call that Chelsea Manning might be trying to kill herself. Because law enforcement is currently the ONLY tool we have to deal with this sort of thing, the police were sent to check up on her. So far so good enough. When she didn’t answer the door, they broke in. Again, I don’t really have a problem with this. If someone is in the process of dying, then breaking in to save them is a good idea. This is where things take a disturbing and depressingly familiar turn – when they got her door opened, they entered with three drawn guns and a drawn taser. Manning wasn’t home, but I have to wonder what the outcome would have been if she was. Again – they entered the apartment of someone they thought was suicidal with guns drawn and aimed ahead of them:
This is what they were trained to do, and that is a problem. Police in America are receiving training that we KNOW leads to innocent people being gunned down by police who were called to help them. I do believe that it’s necessary to have civilian law enforcement, but that’s not what American police really are. It seems that increasingly they are ALL being trained to act like a SWAT teams, which were ostensibly put together to deal with situations that are KNOWN to be dangerous.
It’s also worth noting that with their flashlights up, it could be difficult to tell who just broke into your home. At this point, the unwritten law is now that you should NOT try to defend yourself against anyone breaking into your home, because they could be cops who will open fire in the knowledge that the only real problem caused by a wrongful death will be their own conscience, and for most people that’s manageable. That lack of accountability also means that if Manning HAD been there and suicidal, the cops would be an easy way to wind up dead, again because of their apparent eagerness to use their guns.