Is law enforcement being overwhelmed with responsibilities?
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Following the assassination of the five Dallas police officers in July (7th), Police Chief David Brown lamented, “We’re asking cops to do too much in this country,” and there is a lot of truth in his comments.
In the old days, law enforcement was basically charged with capturing the bad guys involved with such things as burglaries, robberies, assault and murder. They also controlled traffic, and assisted the fire department in cases of emergency. Unfortunately, it has gone way beyond this.
Due to the erosion of parenting skills and interest in religion, the police are more involved with correcting youthful indiscretions than ever before. Today we have deputies in junior and senior high schools arresting students for violating school policies and offensive conduct. Here in Florida, sheriff departments sponsor youth ranches to assist youngsters in becoming lawful, resilient, and productive citizens, thereby giving them purpose, structure, organization, and respect for the law.
In the absence of effective parenting, gangs establish a fraternal bond with children and, in the process, teaches the mechanics of crime. These become the schools where young criminals learn their craft which will follow them for the rest of their lives.
Drug addiction is still a problem, leading not only to serious health problems and death, but adding to the crime rate to pay for a person’s addiction, such as theft on a petty or grand scale.
With the closing of public mental institutions across the country, the police must cope with deviant behavior, such as sex offenders, pedophiles, slavery, and anyone with mental defections who are unwilling to conform to social mores. In addition, they must deal with domestic disputes where couples have either forgotten their wedding vows or are down on their luck leading to frustration and violence.
The police are even summoned to collect stray dogs, snakes, reptiles, and other animals posing a threat to pets and citizens.
The point is, if you have got a problem, large or small, you call the police and nobody else. As Chief Brown observed, “Policing was never meant to solve all those problems.”
Interestingly, for everything law enforcement does for us, “to protect and serve,” we have a vocal minority of people in this country who berates and chastises them. Are the cops perfect? Of course not. Like any profession, some are better than others. For everything law enforcement does right though, it is forgotten quickly and the media only reminds us of everything they have done wrong. However, if it is a matter of choosing between anarchy and the police, I’ll take law enforcement any day of the week.
For all they do, we should show more appreciation, not less. If you are still not satisfied with the police, do as Chief Brown suggests, “Serve your community; don’t be a part of the problem. We’re hiring. Get off of that protest line and put your application in.”
Keep the Faith!