Out of touch?
Every once in a while, I wonder if I’m getting out of touch with police bashing and other issues since I’m no longer on the job as an active cop. Not having to face the BS daily, I wonder if things might be getting better. Maybe I’m not as cynical as I think. (Anything is possible). I think: perhaps, some sanity has seeped into the liberal cabals. And then life provides me a sobering slap in the face.
Yesterday, I had the pleasure of chatting in a coffee shop with two cops each from neighboring [to Seattle] police agencies. Both are sergeants with many years of experience. One I’ve known for years, the other I’d just met. They expressed their concerns about policing today. Both spoke of the anti-police bias held by so many in the left wing of politics. They wondered how groups (such as Black Lives Matter) with such a blatant predispositions against cops could be so influential in a mainstream world (easy, they have the Democrats—and the media).
Cops today hesitate.
They spoke of being frustrated with the nonsense being taught to cops today, such as the emphasis on “crisis intervention training” for dealing with the mentally ill. We agreed, cops need to act based on an individual’s actions, not on what ancillary afflictions he or she may or may not have. They lamented police academy students and student officers who hesitate during mock scenes (scenario-based training), when placed in a position where force is necessary. Hesitation kills. Now, you probably didn’t hear that here first. That’s because it’s common sense—or it should be.
“Glad we’re not SPD.”
What struck me most were their comments regarding the Seattle Police Department. Neither of them blamed me for retiring as soon as I could but long before I had to. In fact, they wondered how I lasted as long as I did. One of the sergeants said, “SPD is the department we [surrounding agencies] are supposed to look up to. Now, we’re just glad we’re not you guys.”
No secret what the DOJ did to the SPD.
I was surprised at how in command of SPD issues they were regarding the department’s decline. One of the sergeants said, “It’s amazing how the DOJ could come in, not validate their negative findings, and then implement “fixes” that destroyed the SPD.” Yes, he used the word “destroy” (and the sergeant doesn’t even read this blog—but he or she will now that he or she knows about it).
Educating the public about what cops do.
These police supervisors confirmed for me things are still as bad for law enforcement as they’ve ever been. Part of the problem, which I’ve mentioned so often, is that law enforcement is awful at educating the public about what they do. However, that can’t all be put on your average police officer. After all, street cops normally deal with people individually or in small groups. It should be up to the people who run police agencies to educate the public. They are the people who have the “microphones.” Unfortunately, any police chief, as an appointed official—in Seattle, appointed by the mayor and city council, is likely to “educate” the public akin to how a liberal mayor would. And we’re seeing the results of that. Instead of teaching why the police had to do what they did, city leaders too often teach people that the police were wrong even when they weren’t.
Return to police bashing.
Perhaps, part of why I start to think things might be getting better for cops is when there happens to be a lull in police bashing because of some other media distraction. I just have to remind myself that the political left and media will always get back to “bad” cops, eventually.