William Norman Grigg
February 14, 2014
A paramilitary team operated by North Carolina’s Wilson County Sheriff’s Office recently executed what was described as a “high risk search warrant” on a narcotics suspect. The members of the “Emergency Response Team,” clad in black armor, bucket helmets, and balaclavas, found what “nearly a pound of marijuana” – which could be the yield from a single healthy plant – and a single handgun.
A photograph taken by an embedded correspondent for the Wilson Times newspaper showed two of the masked SWAT operators in full military regalia. One of them bore, ‘mid snow and ice, a tactical shield inscribed with a strange device – “Defender.”
To those not of an Orwellian cast of mind, it’s not clear what or whom the stormtroopers were defending. Peace officers don’t dress that way, nor do they conduct military-style raids to arrest people suspected of non-violent offenses. Perhaps most importantly, peace officers don’t wear masks to hide their identity from the people they are supposedly protecting.