Does Law Enforcement Need AR-15’s?

Have you ever seen a police officer walking around with an AR-15 strapped on him or her? The most likely answer to that is probably no. Does that mean that they don’t have them? Absolutely not! Any police department that values its police officers is going to arm them to be able to stand up to more than a criminal with a handgun. After all, criminals can use rifles, shotguns, and bombs to commit crimes, too, right?

boston police             Boston Mayor-Elect Martin Walsh, supporter of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, has opposed the Boston Police Department’s plan to purchase AR-15 rifles for its police officers. Kathryn Norton, Walsh’s spokeswoman, stated that Walsh is “opposed to the AR-15 rifles. Unless otherwise convinced by the [Boston Police Department], he does not think they are necessary”. Walsh’s opinion is seconded by City Counselor Charles Yancey, who told FoxNews, “I don’t believe arming [police officers] with ‘assault weapons’ is going to make them any safer.”

It is hard for me to believe that these two men, respectable citizens and public servants as they may be, know what it is like to put their life on the line day-in and day-out to “serve and protect” even those who despise them. More so, I doubt they know what tools they would need to do so. Statistics compiled by the U.S. Department of Justice in cooperation with the F.B.I. in October of 2010 demonstrated that in the course of 9 years (2000-2009), almost 20% of law enforcement officers feloniously killed were killed with rifles. In 2012 the F.B.I. statistics showed that 16% of officers killed feloniously with a firearm, were shot with a rifle.secret service2

So is it reasonable to conclude that we should not arm our police officers with at least the same level of force that they may encounter? If we conclude that police officers do not need AR-15’s, or some form of semi-automatic rifle, that will allow them to even the odds (and sometimes not even then), then we must conclude that neither does the Secret Service, and I doubt they would agree to that. As a matter of fact, I doubt that those protected by the Secret Service would allow it either, so why should we?