An Unnecessary Harshness – Blog Post 1

“I have pulled dead, mangled bodies from cars. I have lied to people as they were dying. I said you are going to be fine as I held their hand and watched the life fade out. I have held dying babies. Bought lunch for people who were mentally ill and haven’t eaten in awhile. I have had people try to stab me. Fought with men trying to shoot me… I have been attacked by woman while I was arresting their husband who had just severely beat them. I have held towels on bullet wounds. Done CPR when I knew it wouldn’t help, just to make family members feel better. I have torn down doors, fought in drug houses. Chased fugitives through the woods. I have been in high speed car chases. Foot chases across an interstate during rush hour traffic. I have been in crashes. Been squeezing the trigger about to kill a man when they came to their senses and stopped. Waded through large angry crowds by myself. Drove like a mad man to help a fellow officer. Let little kids who don’t have much sit in my patrol car and pretend they are a cop for their birthday. I have taken a lot of people to jail. Given many breaks. Prayed for people I don’t even know. Yes, and at times I have been “violent” when I had to be. I have been kind when I could. I admit I have driven to some dark place and cried by myself when I was overwhelmed. I have missed Christmas and other holidays more than I wanted to. Every cop I know has done all these things and more for lousy pay, exhausting hours, and a short life expectancy. We don’t want your pity, I don’t even ask for your respect. I just ask you let us do our jobs without killing us – By Unknown

Hopefully that little piece grabbed your attention. Just how an article called “An Unnecessary Harshness” grabbed my attention on a blog from a retired police chief. In the article he talks about his time as a police officer compared to today’s policing. He asks “Is it necessary for police to be harsh?, I don’t think so. I say this having survived many years on the street during two major social conflicts in our country: assuring the civil rights of all citizens and protests against eh Vietnam war.” He talks about how he thinks we went wrong and how the negative image of police officers arose. Saying “If we look at how this came about we can trace it to the development of SWAT and drug and anti violence street crime teams and what many of us call today as the militarization of our nations police.” The tension has grown between police and community. Causing both to react over emotional in my opinion. Police want to protect themselves because of a few bad apples so they throw on more gear, always wearing bullet proof vests so they can protect themselves and continue to do what they do and the public doesn’t know how to respond to that, they get nervous and maybe possibly scared and act on those emotions when dealing with the police. Don’t get me wrong there are some people who are just deviants and do not care.

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