Not a good idea

In fact, this idea is against the lawcompletely legit, I’m pretty sure…

Sheriff Mike Hale says there won’t be enough cops to patrol the streets in his county and the National Guard may be needed to protect the community. He spoke to Joe Johns on CNN’s “American Morning” Thursday.

A little thing called the Posse Comitatus Act prevents this sort of thing from happening. While the Army *has* gotten pretty good at police operations and working with civilians to maintain the peace, there’s a distinct difference between doing it in a war zone and doing it on the corner next to Starbucks. Reminds me of Bruce Willis in “The Siege” When the Governor asks him to take over law enforcement in New York City he says, “I can do this. But you will not like the way I do it.”
Sadly though, I think you’ll see more of this happening as city governments struggle under economic burdens and those who would take advantage of a lack of law enforcement up their level of operations.

*** Update *** Obviously, as a member of the Navy, I don’t have to deal with things like Posse Comitatus very often (spoken, Never in my career). Thankfully, the more educated of my readers have provided a great education in the comments section.

So, I stand soundly corrected on the application of Posse Comitatus with regard to the Guard being employed by the State. However, I still stand by the idea that we’ll probably see more of this in the coming months/years. And that’s no good for the Guard, as those folks are pulling their share of duty in Iraq/Afghanistan…

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26 Responses to Not a good idea

  1. Me says:

    I believe the Posse Comitatus Act only applies to deploying Federal troops or the Guard acting in Federal authority. The Guard are not Federal in the case mentioned in the article, they are local.

  2. Military officer says:

    Actually Posse Comitatus Act only applies to federal troops. So for example the 82nd Airborne, nor the 3rd Armored division could patrol the streets of the U.S. But the Alabama National Guard can. They are the state militia, some examples are Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Rita, etc. I was assigned to go to Hurricane Katrina with the 82nd, we could help people out of the water and transport goods however only the police or the national guard could arrest people.

    • Guard Vet says:

      I was in Katrina with the OK Guard. We didn’t have the authority to arrest people. We could only “lean” on them to stay in place and hope the cops would come.

      At least on several occasions we had to watch them actively committ crimes (not hurt people) without intervening.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Actually, the Posse Comitatus Act only restricts the National Guard when it is called into federal service.

  4. MeToo says:

    Posse Comitatus does only apply to the Feds. National guard troops under the authority of STATE government can be deputized. Please don’t post mis-information and try to scare people unless you know what you are talking about. A glance through wikipedia’s page on it should have been enough to educate you.

    • fastnav says:

      Not trying to scare anyone. the wikipedia only said that Guard was excluded from the act when acting under the control of the State governor.

      I honestly didn’t know they could be deputized and become law enforcement.

      I thank everyone for the education.

  5. Luke says:

    If the National Guard isn’t Federal, how is it that they can be called to War without the expressed consent of the Governor or State legislature?

    • Guard Vet says:

      Governor’s get a generous federal stipend for mobilizing Nat’l Guard troops. Also while on Federal orders, the state doesn’t have to pay their wages, or benefits.

      Deploying Nat’l Guard troops is a cash windfall for a state government.

    • Unchained says:

      It DOES matter. You were such the hero to me, to go back and face this man and the siouatitn, with your heart open. Do you know how much courage it takes to apologize after being a schmuck? LOADS. More than not facing it at all.I am very proud of you!

  6. maryann says:

    From the article you referenced:

    “There are a number of situations in which the Act does not apply. These include:

    National Guard units while under the authority of the governor of a state; “

    • fastnav says:

      But that’s all it said.

      I wasn’t very clear in wondering whether they could be deputized and act as law enforcement.


  7. Nate says:

    It is true that military personnel can not normally be used in local law enforcement, however local sheriff’s can swear in anyone they want as law enforcement officers (aka deputizing). This also includes military personnel if the sheriff so desires. This type of cross-swearing occurs every once in a while and usually in rural places like Alaska where there may not be a local law enforcement presence but there are military personnel. Once the military personnel are “sworn-in”, they are not enforcing law as a military service member, but a local law enforcement officer.

  8. Don-Texas says:

    Sounds like the Republicans of the south are managing things well! This is the type of national problems we would have with Republicans wanting to always CUT TAXES and somehow want or “hope” things get paid for-There is NO FREE LUNCH- You get what you pay for.

  9. sumday says:

    don-texas and anoymous do you have an IQ over 10? It is the Dems that always want to raise taxes on the ritch while they sit back and expect a free lunch. The Dems approve more gov. systems like welfare than rep. No rep. don’t like to raise taxes because if people go out and work things will get paid for, but the dems like to give away all the money to lazy people who won’t work and then wonder why things can’t get paid.

  10. sumday says:

    oh and anonymous your comment makes no sense, it is Dem. led gov. remember Obama is a Dem and the congress has a Dem. majority they are the one talking about raising taxes how else do you think they will afford the deficit plus this health care plan or do you think it will just be free? Leave it to a dem. to propose a health care plan when 80% of Americans already have health care and are satisfied with it. It is the Dems that want the free hand out that is why they are proposing this trillions of dollar health plan to cover the 20% that don’t work at the expense of those that do work.

  11. Josh says:

    Title 18, U.S. Code, Section 1385: The Posse Comitatus Act of 18 June 1878
    Reaction in Congress against the Reconstruction-era suspensions of Southern states’ rights to organize militias led to the passage of the Posse Comitatus Act, restricting any person’s use of the U.S. Army and, as later amended, the U.S. Air Force in domestic law enforcement (use of the Navy and Marine Corps, being uniformed services within the Department of Defense, is similarly restricted by statute [16]). The U.S. Coast Guard, in its peacetime role within the Department of Homeland Security, and the National Guard, when not in Federal Service, are specifically not limited by this act

  12. Josh says:

    I think that final line should settle it, it takes 2 minutes of research on any search engine to find out that all you liberal dems are a bunch of tools.

    • fastnav says:

      Josh, I think you’ll be hard pressed to find many “liberal dems” reading this blog.

      And if you’d taken the time to read the comments above, you would have noticed that the exemption of the Guard when not in Federal Service has already been explained by others more eloquent.

  13. Niall says:

    Whenever city governments have to restrain their wayward spending, they always dangle the prospect of no police or fire department before the eyes of hypnotized tax payers. Every time. And they’ll always make the first “cuts”, very publicly, in these areas.

    For example, I live in LA, which is basically broke. It was revealed a few months back that the city has a budget of $1 million dollars a year for…wait for it!…CALLIGRAPHY! Has that money been cut from the budget? No way. They’re starting with the fire department, as a way to terrify voters.

  14. Don-Texas says:

    Dear Republicans and Sumday-typical personal attachs rather than FACTS! Just like health care reform-shouting mobs rather than facts. This County needs to understand that when you cut taxes and budget there are real impacts on services. California will find this out really quick-less school-less services. Get used to it if you think cutting taxes are the answer to everything.

  15. virgil xenophon says:

    It might help if “certain” people availed themselves of the Dept of the Treasury website or the CBO’s published historical statistics on tax RECEIPTS (as opposed to tax RATES.) What one would find is that historically since WWII each and EVERY time marginal tax RATES have been LOWERED/CUT the cash RECEIPTS to the Govt have INCREASED. The standard explanation for this–which was the basis for JFK lowering rates some 20 basis points–is that increased economic activity engendered by the animal spirits unleashed by letting people keep more of their own money actually generates increased revenues to the govt as economic activity is thereby increased., i.e., better to get a dime from 300 million people than $1000 from 10,000.

  16. Kaycie says:

    And I thought I was the senbsile one. Thanks for setting me straight.

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