posted on Mar, 4 2010 @ 12:40 PM
I think it is high time I speak out about a trend that I see on these forums that is extremely disheartening to me; the unabashed blanket
characterization of law enforcement officers as monsters, thugs, fascists, etc, etc…
I am a supervisory agent with a federal law enforcement agency. I have been doing this job for seven years and I have worked with all manner of
local, state and other federal agencies during my tenure. As I said, I am in a permanent supervisory position and, in the course of my supervisory
duties, initiated, participated in and handed down decisions in disciplinary actions ranging from instances of simple negligence to allegations of
civil rights violations. That being said, I think that I am qualified to make observations and statements about the field of law enforcement.
I don’t think that anyone, be it a civilian or member of the law enforcement community, can say with a straight face that misconduct, sometimes
egregious, does not occur within the ranks of law enforcement. It spans the entire spectrum, from the smallest police department to the largest
federal agencies. Corruption and misconduct exist; that I will never argue. However, my problem with many members of ATS starts here. Taking these
examples and using them as a basis to label all members of law enforcement as criminal anarchists is myopic at best; dangerous and inflammatory at
worst. I would think that it is safe to say that these opinions are widely held, however I do not think that the majority of members that post here
feel that way. I have seen many level-headed individuals point out that many of the shocking and offensive instances of police abuse are isolated
incidents that reflect the actions of a small percentage of law enforcement officers. Others will even have the level-headedness to recognize that
some of the videos you see are taken out of context and do not tell the whole story. Edited and sensationalized, many of the videos that show alleged
instances of police brutality are actually depictions of unfortunate chains of events that led to physical encounters.
Please note, please… I am not saying that about every video that is out there. Some genuinely show improper conduct on the part of the involved law
enforcement officers and should not be condoned.
For all of you that have shown that you are open minded and cognizant of the challenges that law enforcement officers face every day, I extend my
personal thanks to you for seeking the truth and not rushing to judgment by labeling the whole of law enforcement as jack-booted thugs.
Now, to those that still cling to your stereotypes and blanket characterization of all “cops” as a criminal scourge that must be eliminated, I
will make a final argument and appeal for reason. It saddens me when I see comments like, “all pigs are murderers and should be dragged out into
the street and shot.” I think we all can see that cops, just like any other profession, are drawn from the pool of society in general. As are
teachers, bankers, lawyers, pharmacists, etc. Being from the general population, which we all should agree is comprised of a wide range of people, it
should be safe to say that, as a cross section of society, some of the less desirable people will inevitably end up wearing a uniform. Or teaching,
or signing your loan paperwork, or filling your medication. To point out instances of these people behaving badly and applying a broad stroke of
stereotypical labeling to EVERYONE that wears a uniform is unfair. What about the teacher that molests his students; the pharmacist that knowingly
fills illegal prescriptions; the banker that practices predatory loan practices? Are these isolated incidents enough to call for the elimination of
the profession? When seen in that light, I hope this argument takes on a new shape.