There are days … hell, there are even fleeting seconds when I feel like of my Brothers & Sisters in Blue are on shit-slide into Hell.
And, there’s no way out.
Being an eternal optimist, I’m constantly trying to find good in everyone and everything. I learned that approach at a very young age. My Dad fought through the Battle of the Bulge in WWII. As a little kid, when I would whine about wanting some gadget or gizmo, he would tell the story of a young boy he encountered in Germany.
“I used to complain about not having new shoes … until I encountered a boy who had no feet.” That’s tough to argue against.
My wife (the realist in our house) has accusingly said of me, “He would sugar coat a turd and then try to convince you that it’s wonderful.” If you’ve read any of my stuff, you probably know that I end articles with a reminder to my brothers that they are not alone and they can call me anytime they need an ear.
NOAH THREW-IN THE TOWEL
In recent times, it seems I’ve had more of those calls than usual. Noah called last week. He and I have known each other for a couple of decades dating back to when we worked at neighboring agencies in Detroit. He was offered a job in New Mexico a while back and he jumped at it with great excitement.
Over the years, Noah and I have had some real serious, heart-to-heart conversations after an occasional rough incident. His agency doesn’t provide counselors. Ever. When he needed an ear, mine was there for him.
In his recent call, he struck a blow to my heart: he quit his job as a cop. He’s gone to work for a company that makes cheese and he’s working midnights. I felt like he knocked me on my ass; I asked why?
“I can’t take it anymore.”
There were more phone calls as I tried to reassure him. He advised that he had been seeing a shrink who has diagnosed him with, “severe PTSD.” Oh, shit. Noah’s problem is rooted in his life as a cop.
THEN THERE WAS JOSHUA
I met Josh at the gym a couple of years ago. As we got to know one another better, he confided that he hated the admin of his agency. One particular LT took every opportunity to put the screws to him. Seems Josh got written-up for every chicken-shit issue that could be concocted.
Josh worked nights. On more than one occasion, he observed the shift sergeant following him around on patrol just looking for things that could be used for a write-up. Josh applied to work at a couple of other area agencies just to get away from the stress. The current agency killed it by giving bad references when a prospective employer sought a reference on him.
Josh confided in me that he was at his wit’s end. Frankly, I was worried that the situation was so bad it could lead to Josh doing something really bad.
Ultimately, he was able to get a job at another agency which was willing to listen to Josh’s side of the story. Finally, he is happy.
There is no shortage of cops who are at their wit’s end. The feel trapped. They are angry and frustrated. They’ve considered a bunch of scenarios in an effort to escape, but nothing will bring them peace.
We are all being dragged-down by a painful, horrible, hopeless feelings that are filling our daily environment. And, it’s not just the guys hitting the street every day – it’s also those of us who are still cops even though we’re no longer on the job.
Look around and just think back a couple of months.
Minneapolis. It hasn’t been that many months ago, that four cops responded to a citizen’s call for help. Three of the responding officers were rookies; one with just four days on.
The complaint centered on a model (?) citizen, dirtbag, scum-sucking George Floyd who was in the process of overdosing which led to his own death.
Based on bullshit information, idiots across the country went nuts. A significant portion of the community was burned and destroyed. People died, others injured. (I predict that the four cops will be cleared.) But, their lives and careers have been ruined – all because they did exactly what they were trained to do.
Weeks later, the Minneapolis City Council members are scratching their collective heads wondering why the crime rate in their city is rising. For me, I found it intriguing to consider how those Council members were able to reach their heads to scratch them. I judge their heads are so far up their collective asses that they could no longer be reached. We’ll see what happens next.
Portland. It has a mayor and the state a governor who would be well punished if they were put in front of firing squads. Tomorrow wouldn’t be soon enough. The cops have been told to, “stand down” while anarchists ruined the city.
Most recently, in response to a mob, the police department’s budget has been cut significantly.
Would you go there for a vacation? Me either. Would you start a business there? Only if I were legally insane. Would you work as a cop in that town? They don’t print enough money.
Rochester. Daniel Prude died after being involved with the local police. According to published reports, officers followed their training and agency policies. Rabble-rousers in the community went crazy.
The mayor suspended seven cops. After a confrontation between the agency administration and the mayor, the entire command staff resigned. What a wonderful place to be a cop, eh?
Atlanta. This list cannot be complete without bringing Atlanta to the fore. That is where Rayshard Brooks attacked two cops using an intermediate weapon (Taser). The cops in turn, responded with deadly force.
Stevie Wonder could have seen from the video that it was a ‘good shoot.’ Yet the cops involved have had their careers ended and lives ruined because they too followed their training, agency policies and case law. Do you honestly believe that any sane Atlanta cop will now take enforcement action against a black man in Atlanta? Doubtful.
Milwaukee. The wizards in that town responded to the demands of a local mob. A Community Service Officer (CSO) was sent on a call they deemed ‘non-violent’ and was promptly gunned-down. The 35 year-old CSO was unarmed at the time and is now dead.
This is just another example when untrained, inexperienced boobs who are trying to micro-manage a police agency.
Surprise, Surprise. According to POLICE Magazine in a recent article, they claim that, “At least 20 chiefs have resigned since May.” I wonder why.
Here is a short list of the communities who are now searching for a new Chief of Police: Seattle, Dallas, Atlanta, Rochester, Louisville, Bethlehem PA, Jefferson TX are just some of them.
WHEN YOU THOUGHT IT COULDN’T GET ANY DUMBER
More than 175 current and former law enforcement officers and officials endorsed Joe Biden for President a couple of weeks ago.
Now, before you get all hot and bothered, consider the following: Likes of this same group of ‘in-name-only’ cops met under the umbrella of PERF (Police Executive Research Forum) a couple of years back. The goal of their meeting was to guide all of us in re-thinking police work.
Many of these folks had auspicious titles and a string of letters following their names. I was anticipating some profound wisdom to come from this collection of law enforcement wizards.
Was I disappointed? You bet.
Many of us can recall the most memorable point in their list of recommendations which were built around the notion of incident de-escalation.
They advised Street Cops – like you and me – that if we got into a threatening situation where deadly force was authorized and appropriate, THEN we should, “Close our eyes and slowly count to ten,” as a means to calm the situation.
All this proved to me is that this was a collection of fucking idiots who wanted to get us killed.
So now, these same morons judge that Joe Biden would be the best person for President. He would keep us safe and give us the tools we need and get us home safely at the end of each shift.
To call them and their recommendation completely asinine is a tremendous compliment. When I read that, I thought to myself, “If I wanted to listen to an asshole, I’d fart.”
BREAKING MY HEART
Last weekend, I was crushed when I heard that one of our Brothers and a Sister had been shot at close range in Compton, CA. They had been sitting idly in their patrol vehicle, bothering no one when a useless Piece of Shit Ran up to their vehicle and shot them both. In the head.
At the time of this writing, it is said that by the Grace of God, they will both probably survive – but neither will ever be the same. It sounds as though their careers and their lives have been stolen from them. I yearn to come across the shithead who did it. I would give my own life to avenge theirs.
Stay tuned and please, try to support these two rookies.
Glimmer of Hope. There was ONE piece of good news out of all this. Yet more assholes decided it would be appropriate to stage a riot in Lancaster, PA very early last Monday morning.
Police shot one knife-wielding man – his condition is unknown. We can only hope they are planning his funeral. The prosecutor there brought charges on the remaining twelve following their arrest.
HAPPILY, this judge ordered them held on ONE MILLION DOLLARS BOND – EACH. How wonderful!
WHAT CAN YOU DO … FOR YOURSELF?
I have found solace and comfort in this book –
“Blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called the children of God.” Matthew 5:9
Find a quiet place – if only for a few minutes. Grab a Bible. If you don’t have one, they can be obtained for a very reasonable price at bookstores and quite often at the Dollar Store.
Check out the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Those are all stories of Jesus’s life – as told by men who worked and walked with Him.
Think of all of the struggles He faced, including being put to death on a cross. Three days later, He rose from the dead. He conquered death and said that He would give us the same. We will prevail over all – including assholes on this earth who want to harm us.
All he asked of us was that we love one another and love Him – just as He loved us. Pretty simple, eh?
Loving one another.
Aaahh, yes. Too often, we get so caught up in being strong, self-sufficient, macho, ‘can-do’ men that we forget. We forget that we promised to take a bullet for our brothers without a moment’s hesitation.
You promised to die for a Brother in Blue and he made the same promise to you. Can there be a deeper love one man has for another than being willing to die for him? That’s pretty much the top of the heap.
“Isn’t that gay, or something?” you ask.
The love of a brother has nothing to do with sex. You see love isn’t a feeling or passionate love-making. Nope.
Love is a decision.
Loving another means that you have decided to put their needs ahead of your own. That’s love.
If you partner or any other cop whom you know, is struggling, grab on. Get up close and personal. Remind them: they are not alone. Never will be. Help them see the good things in their life.
I have had more than one conversation with a brother which ends with a firm handshake, a solid hug and a reminder as I look them in the eye and say, “I love you as my Brother. I’m here for you.”
Those words are so powerful that they can lift the weight of the world from the shoulders of another.
We are not out there alone. God is with us through thick and thin. So are our Brothers and Sisters in Blue.
Remember: For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven.
At the moment it seems as though we cops have been made to be the bad guys and the dirtbags are victims. This is a temporary moment in time. It too shall pass.
We play a major role in bringing change.
We are fortunate enough to be able to choose our leaders. They make the big decisions – including who will be leading our police department. For a sheriff, we get to select him, ourselves.
For our own wellbeing and the wellbeing of our country, it is critical that you take that responsibility seriously. Educate yourself on the candidates and the issues and make the best choices you can. The results will have a direct effect on whether we spend more years in purgatory or if we move into the light.
Take on this task as if God were watching. Because, He is.
“Above all, it’s about going home at the end of the shift … “
We couldn’t agree more.
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To our BROTHERS and SISTERS in BLUE: We have now arrived at the time in the ELECTION SEASON when each of us MUST pay close attention to what candidates are saying. Every person we elect in November can affect our lives as cops. Will we THRIVE, just get by or will we DIE?
- Consider the disaster created in New York by Mayor Bill DiBlasio.
- Look at the number of cops who have been critically injured by the Portland District Attorney, Mike Schmidt.
- We cannot ignore how cops have been blamed for the problems in places like Chicago, Minneapolis, Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Austin, Baltimore and other cities where civilization has damned near crumbled.
- Don’t think that school boards are immune. Last Saturday, Steven Lysenko of Spencerport High School, went on a tirade against police officers for targeting protesters in Rochester by yelling, “Fuck the Police!”
- Last, but most important, is the top job: the Presidency. Electing Joe Biden would have a horribly deep, permanent and (in some cases) fatal effect on every cop in the nation.
EVERY ONE OF US MUST PAY ATTENTION AND GET INVOLVED.
OUR LIVES DEPEND ON IT.
Thank you for supporting CopBlue.