Policing has come a long way since the days of good ole boy Barney Fife.
Once upon a time, cops were tasked primarily with things like catching murderers and rapists and protecting property.
They were always used, of course, whenever necessary, to protect state interests – but, then again, the state’s interests weren’t always so obviously nefarious and illegitimate as they are today.
Law enforcement’s purview expansion is explained in large part by securitization theory.
As a result of the this process, peculiar new breeds of law enforcement – Public Health© officers and green police – have sprung up throughout the West.
Securitization theory: the advent of new security threats
The basic premise of securitization theory in political science is that, given the opportunity, a state will endlessly concoct new security “threats” as a justification to exercise greater power outside of the constraints of the normal political process: