In the wake of the Napier siege, Prime Minister John Key has said he doesn’t think the police should be armed. He says that the police have an approachable culture and he wouldn’t want to see that change. He also says that if they were armed, they would have to consider the possibility that anybody approaching them will potentially take that gun off them and use it against them
First of all, I think it is a disadvantage that there is an approachable culture in the police. This is the result of years of PC denuding of the authority once entrenched in the police ideal.
We need police who are the ultimate figures of authority. While there is room for the abuse of that position, if we were serious about having an effective police force, those issues can be addressed in training, and in effective independent oversight.
Within a certain element, the police are a joke. Particularly in the criminal fraternity, boy racers, gangs. Not because they are unarmed, necessarily, which is the current argument. But they are a joke, to some, because they no longer command respect.
Closely following on from that, it is only common sense that in some situations, police officers need to be more careful. If they are going to perform a “routine” drug bust, I would have thought that in today’s environment, it would be a no brainer that they go fully armed.
It is emerging that “everyone” knew this Molenaar guy was a loose cannon (literally) with a penchant for guns, explosives, and violence.
Is there a gaping hole in the intelligence the police were working with? Or were they simply complacent/ignorant?
There cannot be a police force that is both “authoritative” and “approachable”. Personally, I vote for the former.