Police officers can only do what the politicians allow them to do. Officers are no longer permitted to stop known gang members and drug dealers and pat them down for drugs and particularly for guns. Officers can no longer stop vehicles containing known criminals to determine whether or not they are committing crimes or have committed a crime.
No more automobile chases, nor foot pursuits. These restraints have been placed on your police officers by those politicians you vote into office. These restraints are the direct cause why crime is up and arrests are down.
When a person points a gun at an officer, or a person carrying a gun is fleeing from an officer after committing a violent crime, my officers will shoot that person in order to save their own lives and the lives of innocent people. And they will shoot them as many times as necessary to prevent that person from killing the officer.
It only takes a millisecond for an offender to fire that gun killing the officer. A criminal can shoot while running away the police and can fire his gun multiple times in one second.
Officers never want to shoot anybody, ever! Ignoring the obvious, taking a life; officers never want to go through the magnified scrutiny of a shooting incident. It only takes an instant to pull that trigger: but the investigation goes on for months, if not years.
An officer will be suspended from his regular duties, investigated by the States Attorney’s Office, probably the federal government, civil suits are automatic, and the officer’s reputation and family will be scourged and dragged through the mud.
What you see in the media are still frame pictures that only capture a tenth of a second of a deadly interaction between officers and criminals. A still frame picture never tells the truth. These selected videos and pictures are used to incite rage against the police and the back stories are often massaged by the media to sell product. They have no interest in being neutral or displaying any ethical viewpoints. They want to sell blood and guts, not truth.
Respect is a term used by the media and politicians, ad nauseam. Officers don’t have to gain the respect of the public; they need the criminals to fear them. Most citizens already respect the police. Criminals and thugs do not, nor will they ever.
Review the respect in some neighborhoods that the police receive: parents teach children as young as 3 and 4 to say, ‘fuck the police.’ Activist chant, ‘what do we what? Dead cops! When do we want them? Now! Pigs in the blanket, fry like bacon.’
Heroes are those people that society admires and desires their children emulate. Heroes are individuals who run into a building while gunfire echoes off brick walls. Heroes are those who race into a burning apartment after hearing screams for help. A hero is that police officer that works a twelve-hour day in 90-degree heat, goes home and takes off the Kevlar vest, heavy gun belt, sweat soaked shirt and prepares to do it all again the following day.
These are heroes. Not the person who fights with a police officer over some petty crime. Not a violent criminal who has an arrest sheet as long as your arm. Not a drug dealer who poisons your children or gang member who forces your child into a life of violence.
DEFUND THE POLICE
The primary purpose for any government is to provide security to its citizenry. Those communities that have voted to defund the police, either by reducing the police budget or simply diluting use of force policies for the police department, have seen an immediate uptick in crime. Violent crime has risen dramatically and the good and decent people are suffering because of a small percentage of police-hating activists. Eighty-five percent of minority citizens are requesting MORE police in their neighborhoods, not less.
Two thoughts here: Those who hold power and are calling for defunding the police are in the position to either have personal security or have security paid for by taxpayers. Secondly, police are doing less proactive police work and are becoming report writers.
I would demand your local politicians commit to a ride-along with beat officers at least once a year to understand what real occurs on the streets. Make it mandatory for reporters and news anchors to ride alongside officers while handling the PCP overdoes, the drunken husband armed with a butcher knife, or the violent gang member who swears he won’t be taken alive. Let’s see if attitudes change.
Finally, I would demand that Politicians as well as the local media attend the funerals of police officers killed in the line of duty.
This way they could see that police men and women are human beings with spouses and children, not just robots that put on a uniform. And I would say to the politicians and media treat the police officers with the same reverence and respect you now bestow upon the criminals: they are that thin blue line that stands between you and utter pandemonium.
I would say these things if I were your police chief, but I am not. So, you will have to suffer through the political rhetoric and tip-toe for the remaining years before retirement. The job has morphed into something unrecognizable to us working police officers. We must change too.
Remember your priorities: family first and the job is second. Stay safe and protect yourself and your fellow officers and let God protect the rest.
To all my brothers and sisters in blue, lock and load and protect each other. And as always, stay safe.
“Above all, it’s about going home at the end of the shift … “
We couldn’t agree more.
Larry enjoys hearing from his readers – EMAIL
View Larry Casey’s website at www.StoriesofaChicagoPoliceOfficer.com/ and review his book by the same name.
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