By now, you’ve probably heard that the IRS is going to start arming agents. The job listing stirred up the proverbial hornet’s nest recently when it explicitly sought those “willing to use deadly force.” While that requirement has since been deleted, it’s still enough to upset a lot of folks, and for good reason.
Yet the IRS is continuing with its efforts to recruit these armed special agents.
Apparently, that recruiting effort is a bit more hands-on than we might imagine, based on a tweet from Rep. Thomas Massie:
These are not auditions for the next Police Academy sequel. This is an actual IRS recruiting program: pic.twitter.com/KUFqxmbDpW
— Thomas Massie (@RepThomasMassie) August 16, 2022
Of course, Massie is a gun guy himself, so he knows how people should be handling a firearm and I agree with him that this ain’t it.
Now, this is not a training course. This is a program apparently designed to provide candidates with a glimpse of what the job would actually be like.
That’s good because if this was training, we’d all likely be killed be incompetence.
As Katie Pavlich tweeted:
Based on the lack of gun safety in these photos it appears the IRS is training agents to shoot each other https://t.co/banxgTiui1
— Katie Pavlich (@KatiePavlich) August 16, 2022
Again, though, this appears to be a recruiting program, but even here it raises concerns.
After all, does the FBI or DEA do this? I mean, people tend to understand what law enforcement entails, even if the laws the agency focuses on are different. Do you really need to put training weapons in people’s hands, slap ill-fitting tactical vests on them, and let them break every rule of firearm safety for them to get a glimpse at what the job entails?
And I’m going to say something that might get me in some hot water, but look at the dude in the wheelchair.
Now, I think people with disabilities should be able to do anything they physically can do, even if some degree of accommodation is required to help them do so. Yet can a dude in a wheelchair be a special agent charged with potentially arresting people?
I mean, do we need agents who may let the bad guy get away simply because they can’t handle stairs?
Don’t get me wrong, there are tons of jobs in law enforcement that someone who needs a wheelchair can do and they deserve every opportunity to do those jobs, but if this is a recruiting event, I’m not sure why they brought this particular person in.
Yes, the Americans with Disabilities Act forbids discrimination, but only in so far as someone is able to actually perform the job with “reasonable accommodations.” As a dyslexic and ADHD sufferer, I’m well aware of what all that means.
How do you make a reasonable accommodation here?
Then again, it’s possible this was just open to anyone and this guy just wanted to troll them. If so, well played, my guy. Well played.
Either way, these pics don’t really help reform the IRS or their image after the job listing went viral for all the wrong reasons. If anything, it makes me more worried about just what kind of special agents the IRS plans on fielding and just how poorly trained are they going to be?
EDIT (8/22/2022): It seems there a need for clarification. To be specific, the photos are from October 2017 and March 2022 and were originally posted by a New Jersey university to showcase the IRS Criminal Investigation Division’s Adrian Project (a recruitment program where they go around to schools to teach college students about what the division does). These are not specifically being recruited as part of the most recent bill but is part of a previous program.