Militarization of Police

Recruiting Tool


SWAT cop detonates a flashbang grenade under the bleachers during a high school convocation.

Just for funsies.

(Thanks to Benjamin Baeker for the link.)


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  1. New professionalism at work.

    1. Good thing they didn’t demonstrate their anti-dog procedures on the class hamster.

      1. Or one of my pals from the pound…

  2. “A lot of times, that’s how the SWAT team will enter a home when they’re trying to get a hostage or something,”

    Hostage situation. Right.

    More like how they enter a home of a teenager suspected of boosting a Sony PS3.

    1. But how else can you maintain the integrity of the CoD leaderboards?!

    2. I wish one of the kids had asked him how many hostage situations they had in the last year.

      1. “That’s classified information, twerp. Also, come talk to us after this assembly is over.”

  3. The next Colombine won’t even require two Nietzsche wannabes with shotguns. The SWAT team will do all the killing themselves.

  4. Article does not indicate that the event took place at a high school convocation.

    1. Please enlighten me as to how it doesn’t.

      1. well, convocation in a school setting is usually a graduation or commencement ceremony. One doesn’t refer to any assembly of students as a “convocation.”

        The students were gathered for a “Student Alliance Program course.” That sounds like a class, not a graduation ceremony.

        Hope that helps.

        1. The definition of convocation I read just said ‘a group of people gathered for any special purpose.’ ‘Commencement’ is the word I think of regarding graduation.

          1. sigh.

            OK, it’s a convocation. Just like a Monday meeting in the workplace is a convocation.

            1. No, because the Monday meeting holds now special purpose.

              1. no* special purpose.

        2. I nominate ph for nitpick of the month.

          1. honored. thanks.

            Thing is, there’s a large difference between a SWAT officer sneaking into a graduation ceremony and detonating a flash bang, and his demonstrating a flash bang at a course designed to interest students in a law enforcement career.

            That’s a pretty big nit.

            1. Agreed. Radley’s a pro at writing provocative teasers. Nowhere in the article does it say “bleachers” either. (a SWAT officer rolled a “flashbang” grenade under the seats of the students without their knowledge.) So your mind’s eye visulaizes a renegade paramilitary officer sneaking into a high school gymnasium and detonating a grenade under a bleachers-full of celebratory innocents. Propaganda at its most effective!

              1. Exactly.

                By the way, I enjoy reading Radley’s blog very much. I just found this post misleading.

              2. Where are you guys getting the ‘celebratory’ idea from? Anyway, even if I were in an interview for a police job and someone rolled a flash-bang under my chair, I’d be pretty alarmed.

                1. “High school convocation” has certain connotations. That’s the art of the propagandist. When you read it, you don’t think “the highway patrol hangar at the Jefferson City airport,” where it actually took place.

                  1. Yeah, maybe. I still wouldn’t be droppin’ flash-bangs at the airport.

                2. I would decide right there that I don’t want the job, and as it turns out, I wouldn’t need it anyway because it would be pay day.

  5. These are an effective tool in the war on drugs because it helps the cops to attack the criminals.

    1. Suck(-). It’s only Monday and that’s got to be the worst trolling of the week.

      1. Actually, it’s great trolling because that was intentional metasuck you’ve just criticized.

      1. Juanita is a legend around here barfman, she deserves better than your typical *barf*

  6. Ha, good one! I wonder how many of those kids shit their pants?

    1. “I wonder how many of those kids shit their pants?” We will us your taxpayers funds wisely to measure skid mark vs. STP ratio. Thank you for your input.

  7. This had taken place at a demonstration for kids interested in a future in law enforcement. Not quite a convocation.

    1. ^^Negate that statement^^

  8. Well, that does sound pretty fun, to be honest.

  9. (jumping up and waving hand wildly)

    Tase me, Bro!

  10. Well at least he didn’t cram it up a dog’s ass or person’s ass first and no one was hurt. I’d call that progress, not matter how small.

    My state rocks. Fucking 1* tards.

  11. Fun story. Among the many convocations my fellow students and I were regularly made subject to in our high school gymnasium, one was a D.A.R.E. presentation given by someone of the law enforcin’ persuasion in effort to get us hapless adolescents to dare to stay off of drugs. Somewhere over the course of this presentation, said law enforcement officer told an anecdote involving a crack house, a shockingly graphic depiction of male-on-male anal sex and a condom slipping off due to poor fitment. As to the last detail he joked that he himself wasn’t likely to ever have that problem if you catch his drift wink wink nudge nudge. At the time I thought little of it since most of us already considered those presentations to be positively absurd, but looking back I’m left wondering how I’d react if I had kids of my own and some complete stranger forced them to listen to something like that in a supposedly academic environment.

  12. Mr. Balko is usually the best of the Reason writers and does bring to light a lot of the problems with various law enforcement organizations.

    But to say that the flash grenade was done “Just for funsies” is misleading to say the least.

    1. Maybe, but on the other hand, a person could do just about any demonstration imaginable in that sort of setting and say it was for ‘educational’ purposes. It’s a learning aid!

    2. You make it sound like a flashbang is the equivalent of a bang snap.

      1. More like a wham bam thank you ma’am, I think.

  13. Highway Patrol Sgt. Paul Reinsch said the demonstration was meant to teach the students about SWAT tactics and interest them in a law enforcement career.

    “Haven’t you ever wanted to just shoot somebody, without worrying about consequences? Well, in this job, it’s not only okay, it’s encouraged.”

  14. To be fair, lighting off grenades really is a hell of a lot of fun.

  15. Before you apologize for the pigs, put a flashbang under your chair – then I’ll listen.
    Probably just a ruse to get them into the locker room: “Fresh Shorts? Who needs clean panties?”

  16. Need I point out that a flash bang at close range can cause permanent hearing damage?

    If it was one of my kids, I do believe I’d be looking into having charges filed.

    1. Is a Flash Bang like a Flash Mob, but more fun?

  17. I will agree with you guys that it sounds like an example of a cop showing rather poor judgment.

    What’s amusing though is that H&R posters will extrapoliate these various minor incidents into evidence that we are living in some kind of police state.

    1. Why are you still talking?

      1. Because we don’t live in libertopia (where corporations determine what speech is acceptable) and I’m allowed to say whatever I please. So stick that in your pipe and smoke it, bucko.

        1. where corporations determine what speech is acceptable

          C+. Maybe a B-.

        2. You can’t understand the difference between “speech rights” and “censorship powers”?

          Oh, I think I see the problem. You’re fucking retarded.

        3. So stick that in your pipe and smoke it, bucko.

          Well, if that equates to regular tobacco, you will have to stipulate as to WHERE he may smoke it and what measures he must take to ameliorate any possible complaint about second-, third-, and fourth-hand smoke.

          And I can’t imagine that if this imaginary substance of yours is NOT licit that you would dare suggest he partake of it.

          This ain’t libertopia indeed.

      1. Dang man, save the corn for Slate.

    2. Minor? Have you ever read the warning with a Flash Bang?

    3. “extrapoliate”

      And here I thought we had almost wiped polio off the map.

  18. How can this be a SWAT demonstration? Shouldn’t someone have died because a confused kid pulled his Glock in the aftermath of the detonation.

  19. Stupid. Stupid, stupid. It makes it hard to make a case for what good cops there are when there are dipshits like this.

  20. No dogs were killed and only one parent complained?

  21. “It makes it hard IMPOSSIBLE to make a case for what good cops there are when there are dipshits like this.”

    Give it up, Steff.

    1. I can’t. I live with and married one. 😉 I can’t honestly make myself judge every human being by their profession.

      Except politicians.

  22. I just got the title of this post. Double meaning.

  23. This demonstration was necessary for the greater good of The Volk. All potential criminals must be taught to fear the state at a young age.

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