Answering the critics of MRAPs and the 1033 Program
We must acknowledge that some agencies adding MRAPs to their inventories face criticisms from their communities. Articles about this equipment must briefly address the views of people who think these tools are inappropriate for law enforcement utilization. Here are three things to consider:
1. Better-equipped and trained police are a better asset to protect and serve their communities.
2. In some quarters, violent anti-government groups and individuals are targeting cops as scapegoats.
3. There has been a steady increase in deadly and violent assaults on cops — as well as acts of domestic and international terrorism — many of which are reported in limited scope or not publicly known.
If these are the trucks being given away, these are the truck being implemented into law enforcement service. If someone thinks their tax dollars are better served letting these assets rust away or be given to foreign armies, maybe their cash is greener than yours or mine.
Years ago it was M35/deuce-and-a-halfs and Humvees (HMMWV) being rotated out, and a lot of agencies jumped on the opportunity. Several high-profile incidents have demonstrated the need to give law enforcement tools to defend themselves from deadly threats.
The American law enforcement officer is expected to be able to work problems ranging from a traffic stop, noise complaint, or a domestic, to a terrorist act, mass murderer, or natural disaster. While your local town may or may not respond to terrorists planting explosives during a mass gathering event, a barricaded gunman or hostage situation is quite plausible scenario, and tools such as an MRAP will prove indispensable when that time comes.