Alexander Pope, in his Essay on Man, captures our potential as a human race as well as our reliance on God.
This morning I woke and checked the news. I came across two articles written by conservative commentators: Matt Lewis and RedState’s Leon Wolf. Please take time to read the articles.
It should not be necessary to repeat this again, but there are hundreds of thousands of good law enforcement officers across the country, yet there are also reckless officers as well. The Blue Wall of Silence has been no friend to good law enforcement. Just like any other profession, priests, teachers, doctors, lawyers, you name it. There are those who have a passion for their vocation, and there are those who hide behind their badges, degrees, collars, and unions.
There is a Facebook post by Steven Hildreth Jr, an African-American pulled over by the Tuscon police in 2015, that went viral then and has recirculated. In the post, Hildreth makes the point that if you treat law enforcement with respect, you will receive respect. Well, with all due respect to Hildreth the onus of respect is always on those in power.
These two pieces by Lewis and Wolf give me hope. Hope that we as a nation of Blacks and Whites, Asians and Latinos, Republicans and Democrats, Men and women, Homosexuals and Heterosexuals…that we will realize that violence by law enforcement is a cancer on all of society, especially on good law enforcement officers, and has been disproportionately inflicted upon Americans of African descent.
We all expect bad politicians to be held accountable. We all, whether Catholic or not, are angry at the lack of accountability by the Catholic Church for the abuse of our children. We mock professional sports for not holding rapists, drug users and weapons violators accountable. We demand accountability when teachers attack their students sexually. All of us seem to have pet peeve professions which we demand more from or expect more accountability by. Perhaps it is time to remove the partisan and racial lens from our view of law enforcement.
I have many friends and former students in law enforcement and I know how heavy their hearts are, when a fellow officer falls in the line of duty as well as when a fellow officer betrays the oath that they all take to serve and protect:
“On my honor, I will never betray my badge, my integrity, my character, or the public trust. I will always have the courage to hold myself and others accountable for our actions. I will always uphold the Constitution, my community and the agency I serve.”
I expect this accountability from my law enforcement. And I expect their service to be respected. No one, regardless of profession, race, or political affiliation, should be assassinated anywhere in the world, but especially in our United States of America.
Dallas shooter Micah Xavier Johnson, anti-government militiaman Bill Keebler, the Boston Bombing Tsarnaev brothers and so many more. They are domestic terrorists. African-American or Caucasian, Christian or Muslim. It doesn’t matter. They are all domestic terrorists and should be repudiated by all Americans. And all Americans should expect law enforcement to protect and defend all Americans, regardless of race, nationality, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, gender, or country of origin.
Yes, all lives matter, but what Lewis and Wolf have written about is that its time to acknowledge that some lives are more prone to being lost than others. Let’s end both police violence and violence against law enforcement.