Des Moines Public Safety Officer 911

The Unruly vs. Law Enforcement

By Sgt. David F. Brown, DMPD Retired

I have been retired from the police department for thirteen years now, I saw firsthand the problems that officers are dealing with on the street today, but to a lesser degree back in 2003 at the end of my career.  But I knew this was coming.  For years society has been demanding a kinder, gentler cop.  When in reality society has been becoming more and more violent -not just toward the police but each other.  Look what goes on in Chicago week after week.  Dozens of people being shot, quite a few of them killed. We deal with the same problems here in Des Moines just not to the same magnitude.

I saw how more and more frequently when an officer would attempt to make an arrest that the suspect would turn violent and resist the officer.  It was like we were expected to make an appointment with the suspect to schedule a convenient time to take them into custody.  And if the officer used force to make the arrest then they were subjected to criticism from the community and intense arm chair quarter backing from some very wishy washy administrators.

The trouble today is that we have a select group in our society -and this group is not limited to one particular racial group, it is a generation of people who honestly feel that our laws simply do not apply to them.  Our laws are an inconvenience to them.  They want to go out and do whatever they want and expect to get away with it.  And if confronted by the police they will just fight their way out of it and if the police so much as raise an eyebrow to defend themselves they will bring down a media firestorm on the officer(s) involved.  It is always someone else's fault, is their defense and method of operation.  

The bigger and scarier problem is that we have a large number of people in our society who feel we should simply acquiesce to the their desires and beliefs.  If we just ignore them and promote a warm fuzzy feeling our world will be a much safer and peaceful place.  It is a good thing for people who feel like that, that being stupid is not against the law.

Thankfully we have some good men and women who want to do the job of police officer.  They are our first and last line of defense.  They are out there to protect us from all the bad things that threaten our well being.  Unfortunately they cannot protect us from stupidity.

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