Imagine a system where you don’t have the opportunity to defend yourself. Imagine you are accused of an infraction or a crime, and without a hearing, trial or any type of due process, those in charge can determine that you are guilty and should be punished to their liking. Lately we have heard that our system of justice is not fair to everyone, but that the same rights that people demand to be afforded to someone who has allegedly committed a crime should not be afforded to those of us in law enforcement. The rhetoric now has changed, and we are guilty until proven innocent. The numbers of complaints have risen to an unbelievable level, and even the complaints to the citizen review board have increased. What has changed is the brazen lack of respect and the total disdain for anyone wearing a uniform.
So, the complaint comes, and it generally comes from someone who is in trouble or facing trouble. Now every time someone is pulled over, it is considered to be a racial issue. Actually, this is what people want you to believe; the real truth is that people use the excuse of race to make an officer uncomfortable in the hopes of getting out of an infraction. These days, during a simple traffic stop, you are now likely to have someone’s camera in your face while they ask why is this necessary. This seems to be the new norm, and in my opinion it makes something as simple as a traffic stop very dangerous. Couple that with the fact that your administration may not have your back, and if it comes down to your word against the word of an ex-felon or an angry parent, you may not get the benefit of the doubt.
I recently watched a so-called peaceful protest where a group of people decided to block an entrance to a gas station, the owner asked them to politely refrain from blocking his customers, and he was met with threats and rocks and bottles being thrown at his establishment. But when groups made their way to the home of the mayor of Chicago or a city councilmember in Los Angeles, they called for the police to protect their families and property. If it’s a peaceful protest, why call on the police? I have seen mayors, councilmembers and other elected officials jump on the bandwagon and turn their backs on law enforcement. The negative rhetoric could have been avoided with conversation and support, but here in Nevada, our governor, certain state senators and even certain congresspersons have shown us that they do not support law enforcement and are merely trying to further their own personal agendas.
All we ask is that our officers be given the same rights as everyone else and that our word continues to mean something. Because at the end of the day, the only thing standing between law and order and anarchy are the brave men and women who stand for what is right.