The need for a public safety sales tax comes as always wrapped in fear of crime and purports to be a panacea. It is, however, not based in facts. Nationally crime is at a 40-year low in spite of the fact there are more laws than ever. Crime peaked in 1990 and has been declining ever since.
Police departments are awash in military surplus handed out freely by the federal government with no impact to their budget. They look more like paramilitary units day by day.
Nationally, there are 50,000 "no-knock" SWAT entries annually, more than 130 per day. Several videos have surfaced showing police officers unjustifiably shooting dogs. Police tactics have become more aggressive. Do we really want more of this?
There are seven law enforcement agencies operating in the immediate Tri-City area, with more in Benton and Franklin counties. Why would we want to make any of them bigger? We have no say in how the additional manpower is to be deployed. There is no evidence that we would be safer and more secure in our homes but there is evidence to the contrary.
GRANT MARR, Kennewick