Enemy at the Gate: The NFA Must Go!

In a country that respected its highest laws, this would be the shortest article in the world: “…the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” “The National Firearms Act is an infringement.” “Repealed.” No, to be more accurate, in a country that respected its highest laws, I wouldn’t be writing this article

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Frontline Debriefs: Fighting When You’re Hit

In my previous column, I discussed what you might expect should you be struck by gunfire. Since the expectation can run the gamut due to all the variables present in gunfights, it is probably a wise move to steel yourself ahead of time should this become a reality. All of us are different. We have

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Street Smarts: Failing Successfully

Today we are going to examine one of my favorite concepts: failure. The reason I like failure so much is because, through years of intimate knowledge, I’ve grown accustomed to her craggy face. Sure, I have succeeded in a few dicey situations, but more commonly I’ve also made every possible mistake, screw-up, error, fault, blunder,

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Training and Tactics: One Magic Day

You’re only as good as your worst day. While all the clichés talk about how realistic, regular or productive training will improve your odds in battle, the operative word is “improve,” not “guarantee.” When all is said and done, the brutal fact remains that you’re only as good as your worst day. You have to

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Enemy at the Gate: Habeas Corpus: A Tale Of Freedom

Habeas corpus. The term is ugly. Obscure. Like something only a lawyer could love. But nothing could be more wrong. Within those unattractive Latin words lies an age-old tale of evil kings and their dark dungeons, a tale of the common man battling tyranny. The story begins in England. It begins—as these things often do—with

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Frontline Debriefs: When You’re Hit

I’ve not yet been shot. Shot at? Yes. Hit? No. It’s not much of a party. On the first night of the L.A. riots in 1992, 11 other officers and I were engaged in a major gunfight with many suspects in the projects at 114th and Central. We were rescuing fire department personnel who had

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Training and Tactics: I Know You

I know you. I mean I really know you. All your achievements and all the failures. All the peccadillos, all the bravado in front of your accomplices—and the fear and trepidation you feel when nobody else is around and you’re home alone late at night. You live your life of desperation, striving for success in

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Street Smarts: One Plus One Equals Trouble

The idea of killing people is not funny. Therefore, please know that I am not giggling while writing this column. OK, maybe a little. Our topic of the moment is the “1+1” rule. This principle reminds us that when searching for bad guys or weapons, there is always one above and beyond what you have

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Enemy at the Gate: Hooked On Forfeiture

Last month I catalogued some of the outrages of civil asset forfeiture—the legalistic scam in which the government takes people’s property without charging the owner with any crime. Government agencies get away with this by making the medieval claim that the property itself is guilty of (unproven and often unstated) misdeeds. I noted in that

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Frontline Debriefs: Cop TV: Tripe or Training Films?

Years ago, the reality show genre spooled up covering just about every facet of society. The police arena was not immune to this by any stretch and in fact there are probably more reality shows regarding law enforcement and court than any other venture. I found myself featured in a number of segments of LAPD’s

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