There are more killings by cops then we know. Sadly we know even less about the number of cops killed by their job.
Wait. What was that? Cops killed?
I would like to introduce a new angle on everything that is going on with all of the headlines.
We all knew “those kids”, the one’s who wore capes and broke several bones flying then falling out of trees to prove they could fly, the one’s who mediated the school yard spats, or became hall monitors. The one’s who were going to save the world.
The same ones who went through the academy while everyone else was out clubbing, the same ones who took it that step further and went on to college to get various degrees so they could be even better at their job.
I have several Uncles in Law Enforcement, they were going to save the world. Then one day one of them were walking around and heard a blood curdling scream coming from an apt with the door partly open. He runs in and catches a father raping his 4 yr old daughter and tackles the guy, backup arrives and the guy is carted off to jail and the little girl is taken to a hospital.
This image will stay with him, every moment of every day of his life. He didn’t get there in time to “save her” but he’s going to be a damn good witness and he is going to make sure that never happens to her again. Right?
Wrong… Seems just because the door was partly open, it still was an unlawful entry, the case is no good. Worse yet, the little girl is returned to the same home. He failed, but it is only the first of many failures. A little girl who made a strange comment at a school presentation, buried a month later. As he makes a furious pedal to the metal dash across town to a call he gets there as he hears shots ring out, a woman has been killed by her estranged husband. That call to a home where a woman has marks on her neck but won’t tell him what happened, he can see the fear in her eyes and he can do nothing as he peers past the woman into the eyes of her frightened children. He can do nothing but walk away.
It may seem as if I am talking about a series of events in a 30yr long career of a seasoned law enforcement officer but I am not. I am talking about 1 week, actually 1 workweek ~ 5 days in the life.
Did anyone ever stop to think about the emotional toll the job has on the one doing it? Please don’t think I am trying to justify the behavior that has been making headlines, I am not. I just want you to understand the mindset. I don’t care how emotionally well balanced you are, if you see enough of this stuff it is going to spin you out of control on occasion.
Why is it that counseling is not a mandatory element of any job in all emergency responders and law enforcement? We can sue the crap out of the ones who snap but that does not solve the problem, it just throws money at it. There is no incentive to change anything.
Yes there are very very bad cops out there, predators who took the job for various reasons: None of them good but they are the exception, not the rule.
A prime example is the Officer (Casebolt) that snapped on a bunch of smart mouthed kids at a pool party. He had been to 2 previous calls, one a suicide that was successful, another that was not thanks to him. At that point he should’ve been yanked off the streets and given a cooling down period so he could regroup and work out his feelings about it.
We provide grief counseling at schools when there is a shooting, companies provide it in times of a catastrophic event, so why not the very people we give guns to? Marriages die, lives are destroyed, homes are broken and with any luck most of them drink themselves to death quickly rather then slowly. Or worse yet they become the monsters they are fighting…
We have got to do something different, that much I think we can all agree on.