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Briarwood Church Seeks Own Official Police Force, ACLU Opposes
Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/18/17

uncletim wrote:


Has nothing to do with the fact they are Christians. I would say the same thing about any religion or any tax exempted organisation
If they want a tax payer police force under their control they should help pay for it


Oh, that's the problem. I agree churches (esp. mega churches) should pay taxes, but that's just how the laws are. Lots of non tax payers exist, but the cops still exist for them, and should.
Not familiar with how private security works, but I imagine if they just hired security guards they probably wouldn't have the same powers as police. Which they probably need due to all the people in the community. Thefts, vehicle incidents, drugs/intoxication... a local 'church' PD would off set the burden on the city/county department for sure.
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Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/18/17

Amyas_Leigh wrote:


uncletim wrote:


Has nothing to do with the fact they are Christians. I would say the same thing about any religion or any tax exempted organisation
If they want a tax payer police force under their control they should help pay for it


Oh, that's the problem. I agree churches (esp. mega churches) should pay taxes, but that's just how the laws are. Lots of non tax payers exist, but the cops still exist for them, and should.
Not familiar with how private security works, but I imagine if they just hired security guards they probably wouldn't have the same powers as police. Which they probably need due to all the people in the community. Thefts, vehicle incidents, drugs/intoxication... a local 'church' PD would off set the burden on the city/county department for sure.


But wouldn't that open another can of worms? What if every single church wanted it's own police force? Where do we draw the line?
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Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/18/17

PeripheralVisionary wrote:
Meanwhile, the ACLU considers it an affront to the establishment clause regarding no official religion, and separation of Church and state, which are under protection by the usual police, as are all areas of the public.

I want to hear arguments. Not too sure of this measure, less so on rights.


There's no reason to be so overbearingly secular that churches can't do perfectly normal, lawful things permitted to other organizations.


I think if we do this, expanded rights may be done, but it can be comparable to a Christian Sharia's Law


Not only is Mosaic Law and the Laws of Christ actually compatible with human rights, but I don't see where this Presbyterian church suggests its police will enforce that stuff, so it doesn't seem very comparable to Sharia Courts stealing money from widows, nor does it seem like it interferes with the State's power in any way.
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Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/18/17
I think the same can be said for any private enterprise on private property.
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Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/18/17

Amyas_Leigh wrote:


uncletim wrote:


Has nothing to do with the fact they are Christians. I would say the same thing about any religion or any tax exempted organisation
If they want a tax payer police force under their control they should help pay for it


Oh, that's the problem. I agree churches (esp. mega churches) should pay taxes, but that's just how the laws are. Lots of non tax payers exist, but the cops still exist for them, and should.
Not familiar with how private security works, but I imagine if they just hired security guards they probably wouldn't have the same powers as police. Which they probably need due to all the people in the community. Thefts, vehicle incidents, drugs/intoxication... a local 'church' PD would off set the burden on the city/county department for sure.


Having, in the past, worked private security in 2 states, I can say that I still have the same police powers now being retired as when I was a security guard 20 years ago. The primary job of a security guard is to observe and report, that's it, their arrest powers are the same as yours. Their authority comes from being representatives and agents of the owners and/or managers of the property.

The church wants to hire a very small number of professionally trained and state certified police officers to patrol the church, the seminary, the elementary school and the high school and to co-ordinate the hiring of off-duty police officers for events held on the properties.
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Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/18/17

Kavalion wrote:


PeripheralVisionary wrote:
Meanwhile, the ACLU considers it an affront to the establishment clause regarding no official religion, and separation of Church and state, which are under protection by the usual police, as are all areas of the public.

I want to hear arguments. Not too sure of this measure, less so on rights.


There's no reason to be so overbearingly secular that churches can't do perfectly normal, lawful things permitted to other organizations.


I think if we do this, expanded rights may be done, but it can be comparable to a Christian Sharia's Law


Not only is Mosaic Law and the Laws of Christ actually compatible with human rights, but I don't see where this Presbyterian church suggests its police will enforce that stuff, so it doesn't seem very comparable to Sharia Courts stealing money from widows, nor does it seem like it interferes with the State's power in any way.


I was referencing a an X-Men, because I mentioned X-Men, where there is a villain Televangelist named William Stryker who commits hate crimes against mutants using his army of purifiers, a paramilitary group devouted to his ideology. The whole thing is based on a precedence and risk, and of course consistency. The same thing with freedom of speech. You may ask, what is the harm of establishing a religion or decreeing NeoNazis are not allowed to congregate, but I think that just because bad stuff does not happen at first, doesn't mean it will turn out well for everyone, even the majority. Not everyone who will take advantage of such a bad precedence when it is set will be as kindly as these folks, yet the law should apply to both of them fairly.

So first, we need to consider the private contractor laws and their limitations, and what should those limitations be, then consider the precedence this could set.

In 50 years, they may be Iscariot from Hellsing or something. Farfetched, I know.
Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/18/17

uncletim wrote:


But wouldn't that open another can of worms? What if every single church wanted it's own police force? Where do we draw the line?


If they have a massive congregation to justify it and the local government approves, why not?
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Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/18/17
Several issues:
1. The question of if a church produces revenue or pays taxes is irrelevant. Many neighborhoods do not produce any revenue and are in fact revenue sinks yet the police still, or at least should, provide services there. The police are a common good and whether someone pays taxes or not they should benefit from their services.

2. Are there that many crimes being committed on the church campus?

3. If there is a large school or college on campus that they need to protect, would it not be more prudent to attach the police force, if even necessary, to that? As stated in this thread and the article, many schools and universities already do have their own police forces.

Several questions:
1. Why does the church need an official police force instead of relying on existing local police forces?

2. What duties would they perform that a private security company could not?
Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/19/17

Tyrconnell wrote:


Having, in the past, worked private security in 2 states, I can say that I still have the same police powers now being retired as when I was a security guard 20 years ago. The primary job of a security guard is to observe and report, that's it, their arrest powers are the same as yours. Their authority comes from being representatives and agents of the owners and/or managers of the property.

The church wants to hire a very small number of professionally trained and state certified police officers to patrol the church, the seminary, the elementary school and the high school and to co-ordinate the hiring of off-duty police officers for events held on the properties.


Aha.
I guess 'Church wants to create police force!' was just too good of a headline to let this nothing burger go unnoticed.
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Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/19/17

PeripheralVisionary wrote:
The whole thing is based on a precedence and risk, and of course consistency. The same thing with freedom of speech. You may ask, what is the harm of establishing a religion or decreeing NeoNazis are not allowed to congregate, but I think that just because bad stuff does not happen at first, doesn't mean it will turn out well for everyone, even the majority. Not everyone who will take advantage of such a bad precedence when it is set will be as kindly as these folks, yet the law should apply to both of them fairly.


If we were consistent, we'd let them have cops just like a university campus and not try to push some faulty reasoning about religion mattering.
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Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/19/17

Kavalion wrote:


PeripheralVisionary wrote:
The whole thing is based on a precedence and risk, and of course consistency. The same thing with freedom of speech. You may ask, what is the harm of establishing a religion or decreeing NeoNazis are not allowed to congregate, but I think that just because bad stuff does not happen at first, doesn't mean it will turn out well for everyone, even the majority. Not everyone who will take advantage of such a bad precedence when it is set will be as kindly as these folks, yet the law should apply to both of them fairly.


If we were consistent, we'd let them have cops just like a university campus and not try to push some faulty reasoning about religion mattering.


Does it apply just to public universities to have a certified police presence? I am not too sure. We do not apply it to businesses like De Beers is my reasoning, who afford their own guards. You got to keep in mind everyone else who could potentially use this law.

If anything, you are right. It should not be limited to religions if it passed, and it would not.
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Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/19/17
The ACLU is quackers in general, but particularly on this. After reading the article, the megachurch has petitioned to the State of Alabama for the ability to hire police whose jurisdiction would presumably be the church's facilities. Why should this be a problem? The church is private property, but its leadership seems to have identified a need for additional security and why shouldn't they have it if they're willing to pay for it? The linked article is pretty lax on the details about who would administer the police and who they would be answerable to, but as long as they confine their police actions to the enforcement of the law and other first responder type activities then the church is providing the community with a service. Mall "cops" have limited authority to detain criminals and use force to stop dangers or nuisances to the public, so that type of private security is justifiably insufficient when the concerns of the congregation include the potential for mass shooters.

Among the arguments raised by the ACLU is that (presumably) it violates the establishment clause by "singling out" one church out of all the others. But is that accurate or more of a weaselly interpretation of the proposal? I think more of the latter: to anyone's knowledge no other large institution has sought permission to create a police force, nor does anyone have any reason to think that such proposals would be unreasonably denied except it seems for the comedian mentioned in the article.

If one were to take a step back from the situation at hand and assume for a moment that this was an incorporated town or city rather than a church, would the ACLU and others be calling for them to be denied the ability to create its own municipal police force just because the city's citizens and key officials were strongly religious? The ACLU wouldn't have a leg to stand on. I realize this is an imperfect comparison, but I think it fits closely enough for my next argument. If we pretend that the organization isn't a church, but a secular institution (Say for example, a privately owned community athletics complex or civic center), do we have the same objections as if the petitioner is a church, synagogue or mosque (or what have you)? If so, we should deny policing proposals from either one. Otherwise we don't have sound objections to their formation, with the caveat being that these police must enforce the laws of the land, not those of the people paying their salaries.
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Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/19/17
AlCu hates Christians. Dont listen to these liberals, they are clowns!!!!!


taken from their page

Take a stand for what you believe in. Join the ACLU today. With your help we can:

Push back against xenophobia
Defend free speech and the right to protest
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Join the ACLU & help protect our hard-won rights.


We are know its just because its a christian church.
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Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/19/17

NillaWaferz wrote:

The ACLU is quackers in general, but particularly on this. After reading the article, the megachurch has petitioned to the State of Alabama for the ability to hire police whose jurisdiction would presumably be the church's facilities. Why should this be a problem? The church is private property, but its leadership seems to have identified a need for additional security and why shouldn't they have it if they're willing to pay for it? The linked article is pretty lax on the details about who would administer the police and who they would be answerable to, but as long as they confine their police actions to the enforcement of the law and other first responder type activities then the church is providing the community with a service. Mall "cops" have limited authority to detain criminals and use force to stop dangers or nuisances to the public, so that type of private security is justifiably insufficient when the concerns of the congregation include the potential for mass shooters.

Among the arguments raised by the ACLU is that (presumably) it violates the establishment clause by "singling out" one church out of all the others. But is that accurate or more of a weaselly interpretation of the proposal? I think more of the latter: to anyone's knowledge no other large institution has sought permission to create a police force, nor does anyone have any reason to think that such proposals would be unreasonably denied except it seems for the comedian mentioned in the article.

If one were to take a step back from the situation at hand and assume for a moment that this was an incorporated town or city rather than a church, would the ACLU and others be calling for them to be denied the ability to create its own municipal police force just because the city's citizens and key officials were strongly religious? The ACLU wouldn't have a leg to stand on. I realize this is an imperfect comparison, but I think it fits closely enough for my next argument. If we pretend that the organization isn't a church, but a secular institution (Say for example, a privately owned community athletics complex or civic center), do we have the same objections as if the petitioner is a church, synagogue or mosque (or what have you)? If so, we should deny policing proposals from either one. Otherwise we don't have sound objections to their formation, with the caveat being that these police must enforce the laws of the land, not those of the people paying their salaries.


I agree to an extent with your latter example. I am wondering why regular security forces cannot compensate for this, though. The common misinterpretation in this thread regards the availability of protection, such as having on duty police for a private institution without any immediate threat, but actually, itseems the church wants to oversee its own police force, but presumably this would mean they have a problem with how security forces are used today. In any case, I have to ask, what is the potential for following rulings, or even the point in doing so? Generally speaking, they will have to follow the same basic laws as the municipality, so what is the point of having the power to manage your own police force? What benefits would they have that would not already benefit armed defenders? I agree with you on that point.

The main caveat though is handling the power of state and local enforcement of its police force to that of a private institution.

I know I mentioned the X-Men, but it was a facetious example to illustrate how rulings can lead to unforeseen consequences.

In any case, this seems pointless for the Briarwood Church to consider, and more saddening when everyone is caught up in opposing it on religious grounds or supporting it because they have the same religion.
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Posted 4/18/17 , edited 4/19/17

Kavalion wrote:


PeripheralVisionary wrote:
Meanwhile, the ACLU considers it an affront to the establishment clause regarding no official religion, and separation of Church and state, which are under protection by the usual police, as are all areas of the public.

I want to hear arguments. Not too sure of this measure, less so on rights.


There's no reason to be so overbearingly secular that churches can't do perfectly normal, lawful things permitted to other organizations.


I think if we do this, expanded rights may be done, but it can be comparable to a Christian Sharia's Law


Not only is Mosaic Law and the Laws of Christ actually compatible with human rights, but I don't see where this Presbyterian church suggests its police will enforce that stuff, so it doesn't seem very comparable to Sharia Courts stealing money from widows, nor does it seem like it interferes with the State's power in any way.


It is not a case of merely hiring a regular security contractor, but giving the power of managing your own force or army by an institution. Of course, what powers there are is something I do not know. I heard some companies managed a separate branch dedicated to protecting of other facilities, in a sort of vertical integration. I mean, what is to stop Company X from making their own little security firm strictly for their work sites?
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