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Instituting Soft Power in Equipping Police – A Challenge to Industry

May 25th, 2015

Last week President Obama announced changes to the 1033 program that transfers surplus military equipment to local law enforcement agencies. These new rules do not end this valuable program but rather restrict the transfer of certain technologies. Concurrently, there was a call for police to soften their image.

  
To be sure, law enforcement is an inherently dangerous profession. Consequently, body armor is a critical piece of equipment. According to the National Institute of Justice, over 3,000 lives have been saved by body armor since they were introduced in the 1970s. But the adoption of armor isn’t the only thing that’s been going on.  The very image of many Police has transformed.

Over the past 20 years or so, LEOs have begun to wear more comfortable clothing than the standard long sleeve shirt, tie and low quarters commonly associated with policing. Who can blame them? Not many people wear a suit and tie to work anymore.  Increased comfort equates to increased situational awareness and productivity. The requirement is valid and it’s as much a product of supply as it is demand. As one of my friends in LE pointed out, they are getting gear that was originally designed for the military. We may know some of the reasons behind this.

During that same period, the creation of tactical teams literally exploded and officers assigned to those organizations adopted military style clothing and equipment which is quite appropriate for the mission. Eventually, as crime in America transformed, the lines between specialized units and patrol cops began to blur and along with it, the adoption of tactical-style uniforms and equipment by patrolmen. Regardless of whether the gear is actually required by everyone, many are using it, and it is saving lives and improving the quality of life for LEOs. Some of it may be imdustry pushing the “easy” button and offering LE the same designs it created for the military but a lot of it is officers wanting to look the part.

Lately, there has been a great deal of criticism directed at the Law Enforcement profession, accusing them of “militarization”. For some, dressing in tactical clothing is used for the purpose of intimidation. Others want the latest and greatest kit, emulating what they see SWAT wear and the military use on the battlefield. Unfortunately, as good intentioned as they may be, both of these groups play right into the hands of their very vocal detractors who would prefer a return to the days of “Officer Friendly” with his tie and bus driver cap.

  
The answer isn’t outfitting our Police in “Adam 12″-style uniforms, but wearing camouflage or even Black versions of military uniforms isn’t sustainable either. Not in this climate. Instead, I’d like to offer an alternative. 

I am challenging the tactical industry to create new clothing and equipment for Law Enforcement. I recommend new styles of armor and uniforms that integrate even more effective life protecting features. In fact, as they are purpose built for policing, they could be even better than what they have available today. Much of this will be camouflage, but not the kind you’re thinking of. It’s about making features blend in. The trick is to identify LE in a positive way, yet instill a feeling of trust in the public; to soften the edges of a hard target. Some of the answers may well lie in the adoption of new color schemes. Others may be in how armor and belt mounted gear are integrated. Particularly, new camera technologies as well as GPS and communications. Additionally, there may well be ways to protect the head without looking like a military helmet.

In the same breath, I call upon the Department of Justice to offer research grants for industry to incentivize them to create these new items. I’d also like to see grants to local agencies who wish to adopt new equipment. It’s time for industry to introduce soft power alternatives for equipping law enforcement officers but they must provide the same or better comfort and protection for our police. Functionality is key, but there’s nothing wrong with looking good while you’re doing your job.

Honor The Fallen

May 25th, 2015


Please take a moment this Memorial Day to honor those who have fallen in defense of this great nation.

You Never Know Where They’ll Show Up

May 25th, 2015

This time it’s the CIFA (Engineer base) in El Salvador.

 

Thanks to Brian E.

Some Stuff for the Medics

May 24th, 2015

  
prolongedfieldcare.org/2015/05/21/print-these-out-now-to-hang-in-your-teamhouse-or-aid-station-later-and-instantly-improve-the-level-of-care-you-are-capable-of/

Jacob Sams Joins ASP As Director Of Military & Federal Sales

May 24th, 2015

jacob_sams

Armament Systems and Procedures (ASP) has announced that Jacob Sams has been named Director of Military & Federal Sales. Jacob will work closely with ASP government and military Distributors, as well as federal end users.

Jacob has an extensive background with GSA, military and federal sales. He began his sales career in 2002 with one of ASP’s key Distributors where he learned how to work with GSA contracts and the overall federal procurement process. Most recently, Jacob worked for Atlantic Tactical, another key ASP Distributor. There he initiated and administered their GSA contract, and coordinated government sales.

A former military police officer, Jacob is very familiar with use of force products. Because of his work in the military and his sales career with prominent ASP Distributors, Jacob comes to his new position with extensive knowledge about ASP products.

“I am excited to join the ASP team,” Jacob said. “ASP has always had a great reputation, and I look forward to adding my background to their government sales efforts.”

As the Director of Military & Federal Sales, Jacob will manage the ASP GSA contract and work closely with key federal Distributors on opportunities related to ASP products. He looks forward to listening to his customers’ comments and concerns to meet their needs and grow sales. “I believe that as a manufacturer, we need our Distributors more than our Distributors need us,” Jacob said. “It is key to talk with users of our products and listen to their feedback to stay on the innovative edge of our industry.”

www.asp-usa.com

Sneak Peek – Ronin Tactics “Son Tay” Tomahawk

May 24th, 2015


Coming soon from Ronin Tactics.

Platatac and Hardcore Hardware Australia Teamup to Offer Australian Special Operations Tool

May 24th, 2015

The Australian Special Operations Knife is the product of a collaboration between Platatac and Hardcore Hardware Australia. Offered in two blade colors, there is also a training model as well as two belt mounting options; MALICE Clips and Tek-Lok.

 
   

  
  

Harley-Davidson – Operational Personal Freedom: Ride Free

May 23rd, 2015

H-D Riding Academy

To thank all active and retired U.S. Military personnel, Harley-Davidson is offering a free H-D Riding Academy New Rider Course. This offer is active until September 13th, 2015. This offer is part of a program by Harley-Davidson called Operation Personal Freedom, started in conjunction with Wounded Warrior Project, to improve the lives of service members living with PTSD.

For more information, and to apply, visit ridefree.harley-davidson.com/militarylearntoride

Gunfighter Moment – Daryl Holland

May 23rd, 2015

“At his best, man is the noblest of all animals; separated from law and justice he is the worst.”

-Aristotle

Like it or not, Law and Order is a must or you have chaos, which is what the savages long for anyway. It’s not just in the Middle East anymore; Ferguson, Baltimore, and more recently Waco, Texas are good examples of how close the leader of the Free World can become the Wild West.

Sure, nobody wants to be a victim, and with the lack of trust in our close minded and uninformed politicians who attack our 2nd Amendment rights, we buy more guns, ammo, and equipment. If you’re like my family, you can never have enough guns. However, why don’t we spend some of that money on training and improve upon a perishable skill?

I, too, would love having a gun collection like the one Charlton Heston had, but you can only shoot one gun at a time to get truly proficient with that weapon system. I try and keep things simple and only use Glocks and 1911 type pistols, because that is what I grew up with and used during my Military career.

Do you think the guy that surprised the two Jihadist down in Texas had been trained, or had really cool Gucci gear that did all of the work? Obviously, this guy was confident in his ability, and it’s very important to know your own ability before springing into action hero status. Anybody can spring into action when you roll out surrounded by commandos, but to act alone is simply heroism.

The conceal carry laws and training outline by the NRA barely scratch the surface on accuracy and accountability; I add the later because if your gun goes ‘bang’, you had better know where that bullet is going.

I believe that having a conceal carry permit is a privilege, while being proficient and accurate is a responsibility.

Train on.

Respectfully,

Daryl Holland

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Daryl Holland is a retired U.S. Army Sergeant Major with over 20 years of active duty experience, 17 of those years in Special Operations. Five years with the 1st Special Forces Group (SFG) and 12 years in the 1st SFOD-Delta serving as an Assaulter, Sniper, Team Leader, and OTC Instructor.

He has conducted several hundred combat missions in Afghanistan, Iraq, Bosnia, Philippines, and the Mexican Border. He has conducted combat missions in Afghanistan’s Hindu Kush Mountains as a Sniper and experienced Mountaineer to the streets of Baghdad as an Assault Team Leader.

He has a strong instructor background started as an OTC instructor and since retiring training law abiding civilians, Law Enforcement, U.S. Military, and foreign U.S. allied Special Operations personnel from around the world.

Gunfighter Moment is a weekly feature brought to you by Alias Training & Security Services. Each week Alias brings us a different Trainer and in turn, they offer some words of wisdom.

US Elite Gear – Memorial Day And Outdoor Research Sales

May 23rd, 2015

Memorial Day

US Elite Gear is holding a Memorial day sale. Sale starts this coming Sunday, May 24th and runs through May 26th.

www.us-elitegear.com/promos/memorial-day-sale

Outdoor Research

Additionally, they’re also holding a sale on in-stock Outdoor Research products. This sale lasts from now until May 31st.

www.us-elitegear.com/brands/outdoor-research