Liberty & Security Lecture Series: Radley Balko on "Militarization of Police Forces"

Statue of Liberty on a patriotic background

Tues, January 27, 2015
11:00am - 12:30pm
Hazel B. Kerper Courtroom

Police in riot gear on the streets.In the wake of the controversy over the police shooting in Ferguson, Missouri, Journalist Radley Balko will discuss the "Militarization of Police Forces."

"In the wake of the controversial police shooting in Ferguson, Missouri, where local law enforcement used military-style weapons against protestors, journalist Radley Balko will discuss the “Militarization of Police Forces” as part of the Liberty & Security speaker series.

Balko is a writer, reporter and blogger for the Washington Post and author of Rise of the Warrior Cop: The Militarization of America’s Police Forces, which documents the changes in police weaponry and tactics over the history of this country, from early colonists to today’s SWAT teams and special response units. Under the auspices of the war on crime, drugs and terrorism, policy makers have approved aggressive methods of policing, which are leading to unnecessary deaths and injuries, blurring the lines between police officer and soldier and decimating the Fourth Amendment, Balko said.


Radley Balko
Before joining the Washington Post, where he blogs about criminal justice, the drug war and civil liberties, Balko was a writer and investigative reporter at the Huffington Post. He also served as senior editor of Reason magazine, a policy analyst at the Cato Institute, and an opinion columnist for The Agitator. He specializes in writing about vice and civil liberty issues, trade and globalization issues, and politics and culture.

His works have been published in a wide variety of media, include Playboy, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Time magazine, Los Angeles Times, Slate, Worth magazine, Canada’s National Post and Chicago Tribune. He has also been featured on CNN, CNBC, Fox News, MSNBC, and National Public Radio.

In 2011, Balko was named the L.A. Press Club’s Journalist of the Year and, in 2009, he won the Western Publication Association’s “Maggie Award” for his feature on forensic fraud in a Louisiana murder case.

Balko has testified twice before the U.S. Congress and his work has been cited by the U.S. and Mississippi State Supreme Courts. His reporting has been credited with assisting to get Cory Maye off death row in Mississippi and with helping to lead to the termination of Mississippi Medical Examiner Steven Hayes.

The Liberty & Security Series is sponsored by the Department of Security Studies and the American Democracy Project, and is supported by a grant from the Charles Koch Foundation.

Member of The Texas State University System