In the continuing rise of SWAT, police in Napoleon Dynamite's hometown now have a tank. William N. Grigg, in his latest article at Pro Libertate, explores the small Idaho town's acquisition of the military armored vehicle at no cost and the ominous US government program that is helping militarize police departments all over the country. Grigg writes:
Preston, Idaho is a town of roughly 5,000 people that earned brief notoriety a decade ago as the setting for the whimsical film “Napoleon Dynamite.” It is blessedly devoid of violent crime, and has no need for its six-officer police department.
Yet Chief Ken Geddes believes that Preston’s superficial placidity disguises the potential for apocalyptic violence. At least that’s what he’s saying to pre-empt potential criticism of his decision to acquire a combat-grade armored vehicle from the Department of Homeland Security.
The Preston Police Department is one of two in Idaho to receive a Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicle (MRAP) through the Pentagon’s Law Enforcement Support Office (LESO). Earlier this year, the Department of Homeland Security purchased more than 2,700 of the combat vehicles – which were developed for use in Iraq and Afghanistan – for distribution to local police departments and sheriff’s offices across the country. Most of them have very few, if any, miles on their odometers, and were scheduled to be cut up for scrap.
Through the LESO program, law enforcement agencies can receive MRAPs free of charge (apart from the initial expense to the taxpayers incurred in manufacturing them). Hundreds of police chiefs and sheriffs across the country have eagerly applied for the vehicles, urgently insisting that they meet previously unknown needs that didn’t become apparent until the Pentagon made the war-fighting vehicles available.
When I asked Chief Geddes why a police department in a town the size of Preston needs a military assault vehicle, his immediate response – expressed in a tone of theatrical indignation -- was to invoke the Sandy Hook massacre.
Read the rest of Grigg's article here.
Read here, here, and here RPI coverage of Concord, New Hampshire Police Chief John Duval's quest for a tank to fend off the Free State Project and Occupy New Hampshire, as well as the impressive opposition New Hampshirites mounted.