This blog is supposed to be about the things I observe and care about. I care about police. And not just because I am obsessed with cops shows. And one thing I’ve observed in the world is cops doing good and deserving respect. This is not a piece to counteract the ones I’ve written on race lately. To recap: the Fuselang Principle: I am against brutality by cops and against brutality towards cops.
And I am 100% against prejudging and stereotyping any group of people. I think we need to recall there are so many people in uniform just trying to do the job of protecting civilians in a dangerous world. And so here are ten cops I want to give a shout-out
Cop 1: The School Resource Officer at the high school where I work. This guy is the walking role model of community policing. He knows the kids, the school, the town, the issues, he has an open-door policy (literally, always kids in his office..) and a heart for the kids who are kind of lost. He is laid back but problem solves and is just all around the kind of cop you’d want working with your kids keeping them safe. Awesome guy.
Cop 2: The State Trooper who came to help me when my car broke down in the fracking Ted Williams Tunnel. Okay, he wasn’t exactly Mr. Personality, but I wasn’t in need of a new buddy that day, I was in need of getting the heck out of the fracking Ted Williams Tunnel! He hooked that up when I had no idea what to do other than call 911. He showed up. And all was well in what could have been a dangerous situation.
Cop 3: This guy. I saw this interview. This guy is in a tough position, but he has stayed there for 37 years and is trying to come up with solutions. He seems like a bridge builder.
Cop 4: This guy who has been in the news lately in Arkansas for creating rapport with the community where he works. You can see how he does it. It’s awesome. Obviously, he has a gift for communication and connecting and he is putting it to good use.
Cop 5: This woman a Chicago cop who saved 4 people from a burning building. Plus pets. “Just doing the job,” she says. We’d all like to think we’d run into a burning building to save people, but this woman did and four people are still alive because of it.
Cop 6: This dude . I have no idea where Mountainburg is, but one of their cops was serving a warrant to a suspected Meth deal – a thing most people would seek to avoid doing. That in itself is a big deal because Meth is killing people all over the country. But then he went the extra mile, noticed the suspect was losing consciousness and did 4 minutes of CPR on the guy to keep him alive. Goes from law enforcer to EMT in seconds flat. Just doing the job, he said. Oh, Mountainburg is in Arkansas. What’s up with Arkansas cops?
Cop 7: Whoever the cops were who walked into a smoking parking garage in Boston a few years ago to see what was going on. For some reason, I always remember seeing this story on the news and thinking clearly: that’s what the police do. No one had any idea what the smoke was: poisonous fumes, a car fire, an explosive? so the cops walk into it and and figure out how to fix it for the rest of us.
Cop 8: Every single cop at this. Wichita Kansas citizens and cops got together for a cookout calling it “First Steps.” People seeing each other as people and listening to each other. There’s a concept.
Cop 9: My college roommate’s dad, who kept the nickname “Stan” in circulation. Cops are dads and mums. Look for the common ground.
Cop 10: The suburban detective who was great to my pregnant sister in law when she had to testify against a really bad dude one time in court.
Cop 11: The negotiator who got everyone out of here unhurt.
Cop 12: This team. A man in San Diego was allegedly setting sleeping homeless people on fire. He killed 3. The SDPD brought him in, showing the true concern for people who usually get ignored by mainstream society.
Cop 13: These benefactors. Atlanta area cops raised funds for a young man they found biking 50 miles to college and living in a tent on campus.
Cop 14: Those who had to go to this scene and deal with the horrible thing they saw.
Cop 15: New Hampshire officer who came up with this, because it’s awesome. Talk about leveraging technology. Cops are using the promise of collecting a rare Pokemon to attract fugitives from the law. The fact Pokemon was so quickly enlisted is impressive. Collect ’em all indeed.
Serious issues like police brutality demand serious solutions and critical, collaborative thinking. While blind hero-worship is not productive, neither is generalizing from headlines or negative personal experiences. Let’s try to see each other as fully human and work with anyone who is willing to rationally, non-violently and concretely end the violence too present in our country. Good cops and civilians need each other. We need to have each others backs.
Thanks for reading,