An Open Letter to Those Holding the Line:
Last night was terrible for law enforcement. We now know that six officer were shot across the country, of which one has died and another is in “very grave” condition. I learned this morning that yet another deputy was stabbed in Carson City, NV. A terrible day indeed.
Since my career ended over an injury two years ago, people often ask me if I miss law enforcement. The truth is I don’t usually. It’s not the same job it was fourteen years ago when I was a rail thin kid still wet behind the ears chasing bad guys all over the county. Politics, the media, and social media justice took the fun away from me. I felt my thoughts turn away from, “How can I get a bad dude off the streets today?” They moved toward, “How can I avoid getting fired today?” I’m sure many of you have felt this change as well.
So, no, I do not usually miss the job. I don’t miss backstabbing administrators, or self-promoting politicians. I don’t miss the revolving door of justice. I don’t miss the constant influx of profanity laced tirades directed at me from people who do not know or care to know me, all the while being unable to respond because discourtesy could cost me my livelihood.
I do miss my brothers and sisters, though. I miss being there when they need me. Especially on nights like last night, when events two thousand miles away trigger that old question, “How can I get a bad dude off the streets today?”
Unfortunately, the answer to that question today is I cannot. But, those of you still walking the line can in my stead. I imagine many of you have experienced the same disillusion with the profession. Put it aside. Do not let them win. You are a warrior for your community, and your community needs you now more than ever. Stand with your brothers and sisters, lean on them if need be. But, get out there and hunt evil. Just like you were born to do.
I’ll leave you with Invictus, which means unconquerable in Latin, by William Ernest Hensley.
Out of the Night that covers me
Black as the pit from pole to pole
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud
Under the bludgeoning of chance
My head is bloody but unbowed
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the horror of the shade
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me UNAFRAID
It matters not how strait the gate
How charged with punishments the scroll
I am the master of my fate
I am the captain of my soul.
Director, Humanizing the Badge