Aug
26

Police: An Editorial

By

image Almost every day I post a link on Facebook to a memorial of a Police Officer being killed in the line of duty, only a handful of people acknowledge that it’s been posted, yet the outrage and outcry when an officer, in the course of performing his duties, kills someone is unmatched and unheard of. That somehow it’s expected that an officer will get killed in the line of duty and an officer should not be expected to defend himself with deadly force even against an unarmed man. Let me be the first to break the news to you in case you didn’t know, it is NOT an officer’s job to die for you just like it is NOT a soldier’s job to die for you.

It is a police officer’s job to protect you from the ones that mean to do you or your property harm. We place ourselves in harm’s way knowing the risks and excepting the fact that with that comes the possibility of death, but at no time does my sworn oath say I HAVE to die in the performance of my duties. If it comes down to me or the person who means to do me or you harm, it’s going to be them. Plain and simple.

There seem to be people that find it outrageous and unlawful for a police officer to use deadly force against an unarmed man. That somehow an unarmed man cannot do bodily harm or cause death to a police officer. That somehow the one thing everyone complains about when it is deployed is the saving grace here, the Taser. When it’s used properly, you complain that the officers should have gone hands on, when officers go hands on its brutality and they should have used the Taser. You cannot have it both ways. You either want us out there doing the things you would never do or you need to get out there and use those fantastic verbal skills to quell the situation. Make sure you videotape that so I can watch and learn.

Police are trained for many hours on the use of force and are continued to be trained every year. The other thing I hear is he had a knife why did the officers have to use their guns, or they didn’t even see what he had in his hands they should never have shot. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? At what point am I supposed to say in a split second that this individual is carrying a comb, a fake gun or the real thing. How can I know that? We are supposed to wait and get shot before we make that determination? You have the benefit of being a Monday morning quarterback, to watch a tape over and over and evaluate what is going on over and over. Split second decisions are being made on the scene, mistakes are SOMETIMES made, but often those mistakes are deemed justified because of the behavior and non cooperation by the suspect and the perceived threat the person poses. If you are commanded to STOP then STOP. If you are commanded to show me your hands SHOW ME YOUR HANDS. Your contempt for police officers or your quotation of the Constitution does NOT give you the right to interfere or not comply with an officers lawful orders. And your rights do NOT give you the right to threaten or do an officer harm or place an officer in harms way. The place to argue that is in court not street side when an officer is tasked with clearing an area, or securing an area or on a call or a car stop.

Don’t come at me or my brothers complaining that every police officer in America is a thug or a bully that likes to throw their authority around. There are some, but they are a tiny MINORITY. If you truly understood what it takes to do the job you’d understand a couple of things. It takes a set of balls to do the job, an ALPHA personality is who excels at the everyday job. Anything less is opening themselves up for a can of whoop ass on every call. Police have NO IDEA the situations they are rolling up to and going in on edge has a lot to do with how they react. Let your guard down for one second and that’s all that’s needed for another Alpha personality to pounce. Roll your eyes, I did the job for 31 years I learned about getting familiar at a scene, relaxing and giving someone the benefit of the doubt. One brief crack in an otherwise unbreakable appearance and the fight was on. So police rise to a level that doesn’t allow a crack to be seen. A casual encounter is different, police are pretty great people, but once called to a scene and dealing with unruly, uncooperative uncaring people a wall of control comes up and you will not get beyond that.

Talk to victims, people who have been wronged by other people who then call the police. They will tell you that the police are caring kind understanding people. Cops feel and see pain. Cops hold the hands of people as they lie dying, cops hold wounds together in futile attempts at saving lives. Cops do CPR, dive into water, run into burning buildings, climb trees, pull people out of burning cars, comfort lost children, stop traffic for animals crossing the street, come into your life when needed and run towards any danger, no matter what it is, because THEY CARE. Not because of any personality disorder, not because they are bullies, not because they were picked on as kids. But because they have a desire to serve the public and want to help their fellow man. They want to believe good outweighs bad but so rarely see good. I have worked with and know so many police officers. More than any of you can imagine in the programs I ran and became involved in. I know these men and women, I know what’s in their hearts and frankly I’m sick and tired of defending them to people who will never understand, who will never see that a police officer has a duty to protect you, but he also has a duty to protect himself, to get home to his family, to enjoy a day off. An officer will never gladly lay his life down for you, but he will do it without hesitation. He will fight the monsters and keep them from under your bed at night just give him the benefit of gathering all the facts before you judge the methods he used.

 

 

Categories : Family Life

Comments

  1. Eric- I know that you are tired of repeating yourself, but I wholeheartedly believe that you are well qualified, and may be the BEST-qualified to remind people that cops ARE people. You are eloquent, you have a forum, and you have an audience. When you announced that you were going into comedy, I automatically thought yours would be cop-thematic. But then I read that you were too close to having retired~ and I understood. Believe it or not, social work was a lot funnier when I was doing it, rather than looking back on it. And I’ve. often thought of police work as “social work with a gun.” In any event, I hope you reconsider your plan not to continue to get the word out. While your brother and sister officers in LE may be alpha personalities, they may not have a way of relating to people, speaking to people, of being as eloquent as you are. The message is too important to leave to someone less gifted.

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