Respect police and their authority

166

To the Editor:

It is with a heavy heart that I read and hear negative stories about the police who all take an oath to serve us. The media carries endless repeats for the same gotcha stories and videos. The worse, the better. It incites mobs to protest with riotous and damaging outcomes and then complain when the police move in. I believe those who march and rampage against the police should never in good conscience call 911 for assistance. They will have forfeited that right by their actions.

Even the clergy has some who must be eliminated from service. It happens in every profession and job. But to taint all for the behavior of the few is misguided. Police represent law and order without which we will devolve into anarchy. Current news indicates we are well on our way with talk of defunding the police, limiting their authority even in life threatening situations and encouraging civil suits against police at will. Instead of arrests it is being recommended that referrals be made to community agencies. Crime will escalate as police authority and respect diminishes.

It is really so simple. If a police officer asks a member of the public to do something as part of his job, just do it. If there is some complaint, report it to the proper authorities after the officer’s request has been obeyed.  If actions could imply guilt or the officer feels his life in danger, he should be able to defend himself or us with whatever action he thinks the situation demands. More police are killed in the line of duty each year than are lost each year in our current wars. Behind each of those killed or wounded is a family who must wonder if it was worth the sacrifice.

The current demonstrations against police are just one more reminder of the decline of respect for authority. Once we accept that as a new normal, we are in a steep decline as a country. A simple and obvious example is the refusal to wear masks during the COVID-19 crisis. As a result, there is a rampant spread of the virus. And that, too, has long range effects.

 

Priscilla Ham

Shrewsbury