I served as a cop for thirty years in Miami. The greatest honor was to share the camaraderie and friendship with the finest, most caring and bravest human beings on planet earth. There are nearly 800,000 police officers in the United States. Their services are called for nearly 183 million times a year. That’s a lot of danger.
When applying for the job, most police officers not only sought pay and benefits, they also felt a calling, to be among the greatest of public servants. I loved being an officer, because I helped to save lives and rescued others. I fought criminals, put many dangerous people away, while I protected the innocent. I worked all corners of the urban arena in Miami. Voices from citizens often ring in my ears; “Thank you, Officer, so much.”
I personally knew fifteen police officers, black, Hispanic and white, male and female, who gave their lives in the line of duty and many more who were disabled, for life. They had families at home. I knew scores of cops who fought hand to hand with criminals, saving lives for you and for me. Other than war, there’s no other job as risky. I too was shot, suddenly blindsided by an insane woman. I have held dying people in my arms, swathed with blood, pleading with them to hold on. Every day, I had no idea what I’d have to face.
In my 30 years of the job, I never actually witnessed an officer using unnecessary/excessive force. I’m sure it happens now and then, but I was one of the lucky ones. It is not a common occurrence. Don’t believe people who tell you otherwise. With rare exception, there are no racial motives, not in these times. There is no such thing as “systemic” brutality. That’s what some media or cop haters want you to believe. In some cases, a cop will lose control, generally a reaction to fighting, or chasing, being assaulted, or because the power of adrenaline takes control of the cop, instead of the other way around.
Do I blindly cover for bad cops? Not if you check my record, which included my role as chief investigator of the notorious killing of Arthur McDuffie in 1979 when I arrested five officers for beating him to death. That was one example of an adrenaline rush.
I had a personal life as well, which suffered because of my devotion to the profession. That, also, not uncommon. The rate of broken marriages is higher than average for police than other careers. (Exact statistics unavailable)
We are now in a terrible state of chaos, much of which is systemic, because the latest violence in American cities are clearly planned, financed and engineered. Anarchists are flexing muscles by denigrating and reducing police officers through sheer humiliation leaving our constitution on the chopping block. Inept or hateful politicians are aiding and abetting the lawlessness. Anarchists are well trained and programmed on how to get people to hate police officers. It’s all about politics and power.
Cops are told to take it or leave it. Respect for law enforcement from some political leaders has found its way down the drain. Anti-police sentiments, such as those taken by several mayors and governors, show contempt for cops who have no choice but to stand and take it when doused with water buckets, flammable fluids, smashes in the head with deadly objects, pelting stones and fireballs while their cars are immersed in flames. Imagine, being an officer standing at attention in tandem, while denizens of the neighborhood scream deafening expletives into the ear canals of officers doing their jobs, by forcing themselves to look straight ahead. They’re doing their best to remain sane.
Why? Because they ARE the first and only line of defense for decent citizens who are suffering enormously by the actions of hate organizations are given Carte Blanche to destroy what they wish while we all look on.
Cops are not robots. They are human. They get plenty of training. Sometimes, a cop will screw up. It’s the nature of the beast. Officers who commit crimes should pay a price like any other law breaker. Considering the volume of calls they answer, and the violent confrontations they face, it’s utterly remarkable they still report to duty.
In these times, thousands of cops suffer in their own personal lives. Families suffer. Mental health suffers. Kids suffer from broken marriages. According to the Addiction Center, police officers rank highest among professions for committing suicide. I knew several cops who took their own lives. Some were good friends.
Cops meet death on the job roughly once every two days.
Imagine being one of those 800,000 career cops watching police hatred fester while organized violence explodes against neighborhoods, monuments, businesses, government buildings, police officers and innocent people. Thanks to pathetic excuses by government politicians, many wish they never became a cop. Today we are witnessing the erosion of budgets meant to protect cops, and citizens. Some cities and states are virtually defunding police budgets. Mayor De Blasio, of New York City, is cutting a billion dollars from the police budget. All that can come of this: Cops will be powerless, our enemies will be emboldened.
Sound familiar? Think: Marxism. Think Cuba, Venezuela, and China.
Police officers retire early these days. Others are withdrawing their applications. Some will look the other way when suspicious circumstances arise, unless they have no choice. Who’s the biggest loser in the “Hate-Cops” era? Americans. Citizens suffer, along with police. It is they who are afraid like anyone else. It is they who just want to be safe at home with their families and work at their jobs. Each day, cops hope and pray they can make it to the finish line: Retirement.
Cop Lives Matter…as do all lives.