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Saturday, September 5, 2015

THE CRISIS IN LAW ENFORCEMENT ~ PART I

The Huffington Post recently published my two part article examining The Crisis In Law Enforcement. 
 
THE CRISIS IN LAW ENFORCEMENT
PART I
Paul Bishop
 
Because of my 35-year career as a sworn, gun-toting, member of the Los Angeles Police Department, I am often accosted by friends and acquaintances demanding explanations for the recent flood of police abuses across the country. Many of these inquiries are genuine. However, the aggressive tone of many others clearly shows the questioners have already judged me as complicit in these events -- guilty by association. While I am not privy to any insider information regarding these events, I do have the experience to provide a different perspective on the current crisis in law enforcement from the inside.
 
As an experienced Law Enforcement professional, I understand the public's frustrations and anger caused by the recent rash of incidents of questionable -- possibly criminal -- police shootings and misconducts. I too am frustrated by the deadly cost of these egregious episodes of police violence, failures in training, and unprofessional behaviors.
 
I am also exasperated by the way these incidents which should and must be objectively investigated and adjudicated have been hot-buttoned, twisted, and exploited for media soundbites, headlines, and political advantage. Finding solutions to the issues behind these incidents is difficult enough without the flames of undirected unrest being constantly fanned by a quest for ratings or personal political gain.
 
To confront the elephant in the room, there is no excuse for a police code of silence in any form. It is plain and simple corruption. Police are no more immune to the laws of the land than any citizen. If anything, police should be held to a higher standard because of the position of trust and responsibility they have willingly accepted. Lying, turning a blind eye, or joining in a cover up at any level makes those participating as guilty as those involved in the original incident.
 
I intend no offense in this column. The ability to have frank and respectful interaction between opposing viewpoints will often reveal a wide common ground. Through conversation, we achieve revelation, understanding, and the ability to change for the better. We may agree in the end to disagree, but that is the nature of controversial situations and personal experiences. However, respect and control over our emotions is the quickest way to find eventual solutions in which compromise and decision can be reached.
 
Consequently, the purposeful fueling of controversy by the news media and the virulent rhetoric of agenda driven politicians continues to cause potentially irreversible damages to both sides of the controversy. It is completely contrary to sincere attempts to find answers and apply appropriate actions. Public blind acceptance of the malfeasance of these self-centric entities can only lead to anarchy and chaos.
 
Anger mongering, self-proclaimed, Facebook and Twitter pundits, who have no experience dealing with the split second decisions law enforcement is forced to make every day (the huge majority correctly) only distract attention from the real issues. They are engaged in nothing more than jumping to conclusions, jumping on bandwagons, or simply jumping up and down waving their arms to get attention.
 
FOR THE FULL ARTICLE CLICK HERE

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