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Police: guns and uniforms.

In London last weekend for a short break, (Proms in the Park concert), I was surprised to see the occasional policemen carrying what were clearly machine guns. The police did not appear to be in any particularly sensitive area, e.g. outside the House of Commons, or along Whitehall or other government buildings. I’ve also observed the same sort of thing in Manchester city centre and regularly now see the same sort of thing at airports.

The current police uniform also seems to have changed significantly over recent years, and is often now dominated by what looks to be a sort of flak jacket. This in turn seems to sport various chunky items of equipment, radios and the like, and I now read that head cams are likely to become de-rigueur for some forces.

Am I alone in thinking that the overall effect of this, is to take something away from the police presence and makes them look more offensive. I’m sure that this leads to a coarsening of society and is perhaps not unconnected with a change in the way the general public perceive the police compared to even 20 years ago. It seems to me that the police these days are becoming more and more an arm of the political state, and they have moved far away from their original role which was based on their being a citizen like everyone else, albeit citizens with special powers of arrest and detention bestowed on them by the Crown.

As for the subject of head cams; well that deserves a topic of its own which I’ll hopefully get around to later.

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