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Armed to the teeth, national media discover Bearcats


The civil unrest in a St. Louis suburb last week attracted national attention. Some in the national media have apparently discovered what Granite Staters have known and have been concerned about for quite awhile: Local police are stocking up on military combat vehicles.

CBS News did a separate story and found some congressmen who were astounded that police around the country have been using public funds to buy armored personnel vehicles designed for military assaults.

Using them for civilian unrest, noted one critic in the story, can actually increase tensions. No kidding?

Tell that to the city fathers of Concord, which recently ignored objections from citizens in accepting a "Bearcat'' vehicle.

Keene and Manchester have similar armored vehicles as do the State Police.

All of this began in the wake of and the name of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on America. Homeland security is important, to be sure. But arming local police departments with military might needs to be very carefully examined.

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