A short article discussing the case is included here http://reason.com/blog/2010/05/05/video-of-swat-raid-on-missouri and http://www.columbiatribune.com/news/2010/feb/23/family-questions-swat-drug-search-that-led-to/.
A few weeks ago, I worked with a kid on a video shoot who was once on track to become an engineer before he decided he wanted to take the easy way into life by becoming a cop. Like many nerds, this kid barely qualifies as "socialized." He's got a superiority complex, is often a bully (mentally, since he doesn't have the skills or the weapons to physically push anyone around), and is superstitious and a wingnut. Other than having had experience as a high school bully or an actual criminal (as best I know), he's perfectly qualified to join the US version of Nazi Germany's SS.
At one point during the show we were taping, he made the comment, "I don't know why people hate cops. We're professionals like doctors or lawyers." He claim to professionalism was based on the fact that to get their lifetime guaranteed employment jobs, cops have to "earn a college degree." Of course, unlike doctors and lawyers, a grossly misnamed "Criminal Justice" bachelor's degree is a minimal education with grade school difficultly courses offered by every fly-by-night correspondence program on the planet. You can get your Criminal Justice piece of toilet paper from the same fine people who bring us degrees in Court Reporting, Culinary Arts, Health Insurance Customer Service, Paralegal, and Video Game design training. Some of these degree mills have the gall to call their programs "Public Safety Administration." Watching the video above sure makes this member of the public feel safer.
For laughs, here are some of the course names from a typical criminal justice program:
- Ethical Issues in Criminal Justice,
- Police Report Writing,
- Precision Driving,
- Current Issues in Criminal Justice,
- Criminal Justice Internship,
- Physical Fitness Conditioning,
- Physical-Defensive Tactics,
- Conflict Management in Criminal Justice,
- State Criminal Law,
- State Criminal Procedures,
- Criminal Investigation,
- Patrol Problems,
- Traffic Management,
- Law Enforcement Assessment,
- Advanced First Aid,
- and Crime-Violence in Literature.
The kid who inspired this rant dropped out of his EE program because it was too hard. He figured if all he was going to do with his life was issue traffic tickets and break down residential doors, shoot household pets, and terrorize unarmed citizens, why learn anything useful? The next time you watch one of those idiotic television programs that has a highly-skilled geek whipping through loads of information, chasing down criminals using beyond state-of-the-art tools, remember this kid. He will probably end up being some police department's "genius," but he wasn't near bright enough to complete a real engineering program or diligent enough to work his way through a real college degree program. The fact is, all our police can do is break into ordinary citizens' homes and terrorize the family next door. They don't have the skills necessary to protect society from real menaces. They have a degree in Criminal Justice.
As for why people hate and fear cops, I'd bet the 8-year old who saw his parents treated like dangerous criminals and his family pets shot down because men in armour felt like killing something could answer that question. I'd imagine that Jonathan Whitworth could give you a pretty good explaination of why he is afraid of his local nutcases with guns. Anyone with a lick of sense ought to be afraid for their lives after watching this video, especially with the knowledge that teams like this exist in every mid-sized city and they are itching to pretend to be tough.
Ideally, they can exercise their bullying instincts in safe environments like the bust shown in this video. If they were busting bikers cooking meth, they'd have to worry about getting shot at. Busting a recreational marijuana user and his family is about as dangerous as beating up kids at the local Dairy Queen. Let's face it, if these bozos weren't employed by the local cops, they'd be doing exactly that, beating up kids and hanging out in bars. It's not like they have real skills, a useful education, or any social value.