Too many guns en­dan­ger po­lice

Los Angeles Times - - OPINION -

Re “Set­ting rules for po­lice stops,” Ed­i­to­rial, June 12

As jus­ti­fi­ably up­set as peo­ple are about po­lice shoot­ings of un­armed cit­i­zens, the ele­phant in the room is that thanks to the Na­tional Ri­fle Assn. and politi­cians who suck up to it, our gen­eral cit­i­zenry is too heav­ily armed and ev­ery en­counter that po­lice have car­ries a strong pos­si­bil­ity that the per­son the po­lice are deal­ing with is armed.

We’ve traded “home of the brave” for “home of the gun-tot­ing in­se­cure.”

If we want to re­verse the trend, then we need to over­come the cyn­i­cal machi­na­tions of the NRA that boost busi­ness for gun man­u­fac­tur­ers re­gard­less of hu­man cost, and over­ride re­cent Supreme Court de­ci­sions that have un­der­mined the com­mon-sense in­tent of the 2nd Amend­ment.

It’s about time we as a na­tion were a lit­tle more brave and a lit­tle less armed.

Linda Kra­nen


Com­mon sense is not so com­mon. The L.A. Po­lice Com­mis­sion rul­ing in the Ezell Ford case goes fur­ther: It de­fies com­mon sense.

Re­cent po­lice shoot­ings have dam­aged law en­force- ment’s im­age, per­haps ir­repara­bly. Take away an of­fi­cer’s right to ap­proach an in­di­vid­ual and you im­pair his abil­ity to do his job. The Ford tragedy is the sig­na­ture case of why this is so. It’s not com­pli­cated.

When an in­di­vid­ual goes for an of­fi­cer’s gun and in the con­fronta­tion is shot, how can the of­fi­cer be held ac­count­able? The com­mis­sion’s ra­tio­nale is that the two Los An­ge­les Po­lice Depart­ment of­fi­cers in­volved had no valid rea­son to ques­tion Ford, and that what hap­pened sub­se­quently never should have tran­spired. How does that make any sense?

The Po­lice Com­mis­sion’s find­ing likely will cre­ate a sce­nario in which po­lice may be re­luc­tant to ap­proach peo­ple based on their train­ing, in­tu­ition and judg­ment. The re­sult of such a find­ing is easily pre­dictable — just ask the cit­i­zens of Bal­ti­more.

Don Broder

La­guna Niguel

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