There’s been a lot in mainstream and social media about bad law enforcement behavior, militarization of local departments, and alleged overt harassment, brutality, murder, etc., perpetrated by members of these agencies.
Not saying these things aren’t happening.
Still, should you be surprised law enforcement agencies are militarizing? Should you be surprised officers are breaking bad? Should any of this be a surprise? Or are these examples classical symptoms of an increasingly divided society?
I don’t blame peace officers. They are victims, just as those they humiliate, kill, maim, incarcerate, and ignore are victims.
Was there was ever such a thing as a “peace officer,” meaning “someone who maintains the peace”? “Peace officer” is a misnomer. I learned, for example in my advanced pistol course that peace officers, aka “law enforcement officers”, aren’t employed to protect us, merely to enforce laws. Law enforcement officers these days sometimes incite more non-peace than peace, thought not always. For every officer who does something stupid, there are probably many others just trying to do their jobs.
For their sake, let’s redefine “peace officer”. It’s easy. We simply create a society where those whose job it is to keep the peace are no longer rewarded for enforcing laws. Rather, they are rewarded for ensuring people are cared for, protected, and served, as in “performing duties for another person.” That’s how peace is maintained.
Far fewer macho, maniacal, egotistical men and women would sign up for such redefined roles. A good thing, likely. Those who stay would feel better about their work. Those they serve would, too.
After all, wouldn’t you respond differently to an officer who approached you to ensure you were doing well, rather than apprehending you because you did something wrong?
I sure would.