Good read. I'm glad he went on to provide support for others experiencing the same. We need police who care, instead of those who only relish in the position of authority.
But being an honest, empathetic human in that position can be traumatic.
Agreed, and an important article to repost here where we normally only see the cluelessness of law enforcement. Cops are three dimensional, complex people, not merely heroes or villains.
This does not excuse things like the abuse of steroids that we are currently seeing in American police forces, but if we better understand why, we can better keep cops from feeling the need.
This is why we get abusive cops.
The police should be the best of us, but we let their jobs grind them down into damaged, abusive assholes. We need both stricter standards of behavior for cops who step out of line, and also much better treatment for the average officer. That means, IMHO, better pay, better benefits, comprehensive and proactive physical and mental health care, and a culture that doesn't encourage officers to hide their damage under a macho facade.
It's hard work violating all of those rights.
Do try and pay attention. We have so many bad cops because trauma makes the good ones either quit or go bad, not because cops are inherently wicked.
I'd like to believe what you claim is true, and it may be in part, but here in San Diego we have some major issues with some horrendous cops who have only been with the police department a few years. The biggest issue we're facing with our police department I can think of is sexual assault (and our former mayor resigned for that kind of behavior). In fact, our former police chief, just a few weeks ago, suddenly retired without explanation. The smartest thing our newly-elected mayor (a Republican, no less) did was to appoint a woman as police chief, the first female police chief in the city's history. Already, she's making some changes that I think will help.
But I digress - there are plenty of cops that are bad from the outset.
yeah, that's pretty fucked up. it's hard to be empathetic when they take it out on us, though. someone's gotta do something, because I am fucking sick of every cop being a dick all the time.
I agree, actually. By creating an environment that encourages good cops to go bad, and by refusing to crack down on bad cops at any time, we create an environment where good cops feel powerless and bad cops feel comfortable and welcomed. I'm saying we need a carrot and a stick: reward and protect good cops, drop the hammer on bad cops. It's not enough to just punish the few individuals who get caught when the whole police culture encourages bad behavior. We need to change the culture.
This has been true for some time.
"When constabulary duties to be done, to be done
A policeman's lot is not a happy one"---W. S. Gilbert
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