News reports frequently show police wearing helmets and masks, wielding assault rifles, and riding in mine-resistant armored vehicles. These are not isolated incidents — they represent a nationwide trend of police militarization. Sending a heavily armed team of officers to perform routine police work can dangerously escalate situations that never needed to involve violence in the first place. Throughout the United States, heavily armed SWAT teams are raiding people’s homes in the middle of the night, often just to search for drugs. Military-style police raids have increased dramatically in recent years, with one report finding over 85,555 such raids last year. It should enrage us that people have needlessly died during these raids, that pets have been shot, and that homes have been ravaged. Sometimes children are in the crossfire — often with deadly results. Our neighborhoods are not warzones, and the police should not be treating us like wartime enemies.
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The main beneficiaries of this militarization are military contractors who now have another lucrative market in which to sell their products. Police departments use these wartime weapons in everyday policing, especially to fight the wasteful and failed drug war, which has unfairly targeted people of color. According to a recent ACLU report, “of all the incidents studied where the number and race of the people impacted were known, 89 percent were Black, 66 percent were Latino, 75 were white. ” The majority of raids that targeted blacks and Latinos were related to drugs — another metric exposing how the “war on drugs” is racist to the core. Over the last few years the role of police in American society has increasingly drawn harsh criticism. These criticisms are disproportionate and do not take into account the everyday facts of policing, including: Dr.
Min Liu’s research interests center on educational uses of new media and other emerging technologies, particularly the impact of such technologies on teaching and learning and the design of new media enriched interactive learning environments for learners at all age levels. She has published in leading Learning Technology/Instructional Technology research journals and presents regularly at national and international technology conferences. She develops and teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on new media design, production, and research. Her courses include “Interactive Multimedia: Design and Production, ” “Designs and Strategies for New Media, ” Multimedia Authoring, ” “Interactive Multimedia Research, ” “Instructional Systems Design” and “Analysis of Research in Instructional Technology. ” She also serves on a number of editorial boards for research journals in Learning Technology/Instructional Technology. Current R D projects include (See related to these topics):
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Designing and researching immersive multimedia learning environments and related factors. See an example (This is my long-term R D project). Examining mobile technology for teaching and learning. 5 tools in teaching learning: Specifically, researching the use of social network sites for language learning by college ESL students. Kansas needs a fair tax code that doesn’t raise taxes on families while others don’t pay their fair share. We cannot keep digging our state deeper into debt.
Our Kansas lawmakers need to cooperate on common sense solutions for balancing the budget rather than letting special interests dictate how we spend our money and run our state. Kansas already tried this when it created KanCare—our privatized state version of Medicaid—with disastrous effects. KanCare has shown poor performance and a lack of accountability in both enrollment and claim payment times, while also reducing healthcare services and availability to Kansas. That is neither efficient nor fiscally responsible. We must also ensure survival of our rural hospitals by taking advantage of Medicaid expansion. Kansas citizens pay federal taxes expecting the return of our fair share. To forfeit our own tax dollars out of protest of the federal program is self-defeating.
Not only that, we would lose many of the jobs provided by our rural hospitals if they cannot afford to keep their doors open. Let’s not cut off our noses to spite our faces…there will be nowhere left to sew them back on. Elimination of state funding for schools means more costs keep getting pushed onto our property taxes.