Why Are “SWAT” Type Teams Being Used To Take Down Smoke Shops In Lubbock?
This one bothers me quite a bit. When taking down a local smoke shop, Lubbock police geared up in ski masks and armed with AR-15's. Now, don't think I blame the police for the STUPID show of force, this goes back to the city council.
Okay guys, it's time for a little education. In order to get some little packets of synthetic marijuana off the shelves, Lubbock police geared up in a manner a bit more appropriate for taking down Osama Bin Laden. Now, I do not blame the police on the ground, I don't even blame whatever desk rider ordered them to respond in this way. All of this boils down to histrionics at City Council. The good men and women on the Lubbock Police force will tell you themselves that they didn't sign up for this crap; they signed up to help people.
Now, I can only give you some observations here, I don't know everything and I may not have everything right, but here you go. The council gives the police force the directive to enforce this law against synthetic pot. It doesn't matter that it takes man power away from finding missing people or stopping burglaries, the council makes it a priority. At this point I'd like to say that the Mayor wanted nothing to do with this, saying that it was nothing more than 'feel good legislation'. Okay, let's get back on track. This law was spearheaded by Councilperson Karen Gibson, who was show basically melting down on the local news when an attorney who owns smoke shops said he didn't think the law was enforceable. At this point the story takes a soap opera turn, but I want you to know what you're dealing with. This council person is estranged from her husband . Rather than doing what any intelligent person would do and renting a small apartment in her district, she apparently moved in with a friend. Now, at this point I feel scuzzy writing this about anyone, and it really should be her private business, but the following is what makes it relevant. The "friend" she moved in with, is our City Manager Lee Ann Dumbauld. This not only puts her living out of her district, it creates a little power block in the mind of local wing-nut councilman Victor Hernandez who may or may not have been having Ms Dumbauld's house watched in order to validate his suspicions. Hernandez, as you may know, is the subject of a recall campaign and may not have been legally elected because he owed back taxes to the city at that time (it's okay, he can tax you...but being taxed is too much trouble for the poor guy).
So there you go, Lubbock politics is like a clown car. Just when you thought you've seen the last clown pop out, along comes another one. The end result of all of this is that you have a group of clowns telling the police to "make a statement" when it comes to these smoke shops. So, to wrap things up, it all comes down to you. These are your representatives, it's time to tell them to pull themselves together and get their priorities in order. Or, we can just get keep cycling council people in and out until we get a group that will work together and put community concerns ahead of showboating tactics, like using a SWAT team against a part time employee who probably makes nine bucks an hour.
Back to the topic in hand. My Uncle was L.A. County Sheriff for decades upon decades. When he left, they literally took the door to his office off the hinges and presented him with the entire door. This is just a small amount of the kudos he received. If he had been in charge of a situation like taking down a smoke shop, here's what he'd do. He'd walk into that smoke shop, probably alone, and say "son, I'm sorry, we've got a problem here and we have to take you down town". That would be the END of it. I do want to point out that my Uncle was the lead firearms instructor of L.A. County and held the world record for popping six caps from a service revolver. You see, when you're a badass, you don't have to act like a badass. Even then, I think "taking down a smoke shop" should be down by a code enforcement guy or something and not a group of over armed police in ski masks.
p.s. I am just a concerned citizen and who knows how much of this is fact or flavored by my opinions or the opinions of others. If you have any corrections or additions to this blog, please let me know. These are just my opinions and observations based on a very tangled web of information.