A good post, “Rand Paul Stole The Idea To Demilitarize The Police From Democrats“, lays out how Democrats were calling for the demilitarization of police forces–and trying to pass legislation to that end–months before Rand Paul and the Libertarians did anything; it’s worth a read.
What this illustrates is that liberal ideas are never taken seriously by themselves, even though conservative ideas are, unless there’s a Very Serious Conservative (or Libertarian) also espousing them. I’ve seen floating around the intertoobz the notion that liberals don’t really care about police brutality. The idea that liberals–the ones who proudly call themselves by that term and didn’t rebrand themselves as ‘progressives’–don’t care about police brutality is ridiculous. It’s our people and our supporters who bear the brunt of these policies. Not only are many liberals affected by (or potentially could be subject to) police ‘militarization’*, but we’ve been arguing against this crap since the beginning of the goddamn War on Drugs in the 1980s. Maybe we haven’t been successful, but this has been a liberal cause for a very long time.
*I don’t like the term militarization, since there are two real phenomena that aren’t adequately described by the term. The first is the distribution of unnecessary equipment that, in most cases, makes serving and protecting harder (from the served and protected perspective). The second is the view of citizens as a hostile force that need to be subjugated and controlled.