In Support of Law Enforcement

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l_camden_mentor_cops-2-1It breaks my heart when I hear reports of police shooting and killing an unarmed black man. This morning I read a report where a police officer in West Virginia was fired because he did NOT kill a man demanding to be shot, a so-called suicide-by-cop incident. Readers of this blog are aware I live in the county where the trial of Steven Avery took place; the topic of the Making a Murderer documentary on Netflix.

Black people are incensed by the killing of unarmed black men by police; they should be. White people are also killed by police, but there does seem to be a bias toward “shoot first, ask questions later” mentality when black men are involved. For a while it looked like retaliation killings of police officers at random would accelerate. It seems to have died down (or I miss the news reports).

Police have been the target of criminals for longer than the Black Lives Matter movement. I agree, black lives do matter and police need to act appropriately regardless the color of skin a suspect has. The moment police are targeted for harm, however, you have to stand up and just as loudly proclaim: Blue Lives Matter, too.

I have been critical of the police most of my life. I am critical of all government. With authority comes responsibility. Police are highly trained professionals asked to run into harm’s way when shit goes down. There is no doubt in my mind 99% of law enforcement officials are men and women of high moral character, values, and ethics. Unfortunately, the 99% of law enforcement officials who are honest are asked to make some very difficult decisions without all the facts, where lives are at stake, and given limited time to make the call. Some days you are damned no matter what you do. There have to be days it sucks to be a cop.




A World without Police

Imagine a world without men and women dedicated to keeping our communities safe. Now imagine waking each morning and going to work not knowing if this is the day a fucktard tries to put a bullet in your head because he wants to get away with stealing a package of Twinkies at the local mini-mart. Can you image working such an uncertain job where half the people like you for what you do and the other half think you are a “pig”? I wouldn’t do it.  Maybe an IRS auditor is loved less. Maybe.

Several years ago my office building was burglarized. The two geniuses who sodomized my building thought there was a soda machine inside and they were looking for some of that lucrative soda machine money to commandeer. When they discovered no soda machine they did the next best thing; they stole two computer monitors, a debit card, and forged a blank check from my business account.

The next morning the break-in was discovered and the police were called in. The police were assholes and elbows gathering information to catch the criminals and provide the district attorney’s office with charges. Before the day was out the police had a good idea who did the dirty deed and caught the guys a week later. Seems they were on a crime spree molesting soda machines all over town. Dumbasses.

The police were 100% professional the entire time. No doubt about it. The police were prompt, courteous, and respectful. I am certain the perps were not treated with the same dignity, but the situation is different when working with suspects. From what I gathered, the police still acted completely professional when arresting the two men.

Now think about this for a while. Imagine if there were no police. How often do you think my building would be vandalized, broken into, or damaged? Shit, some of these idiots look to the left, then to the right, see no cops and say, “Fuck it!” and break in anyway, or steal a car, or rape a passed out college girl. Once again, 99% of people in our society are good people; it is the 1% of idiots who fuck it up. It is this very small minority of people eager to do harm that makes me grateful the police are around and willing to drop everything and run to my rescue when the boom is dropping.

I am married to the beautiful and wonderful Mrs. Accountant, plus I have two awesome daughters. I have three more reasons to love the police and the work they do. How many reasons do you have?

Critical

Of course I am critical of police behavior. I wish the local police would acknowledge the errors made in the Steven Avery case. No matter the outcome of the appeals (Brendon Dassey’s conviction has been overturned by a federal judge and is being appealed by the state as I write) the people of our community have lost. If Avery did not commit the crime, the real criminal went free and my tax dollars were wasted, not to mention the damage to Avery’s life. If Avery is guilty, then the appearance of impropriety by the police could allow a murderer to go free. There is no way for justice to prevail in this case. As a community we were asked to reach for our ankles and smile as we reached. We must demand more professionalism from law enforcement.

Am I too vulgar as I discuss this? I hope not. I am passionate about the topic because it affects my clients, my business, my family, and my community. This is my home, too, you know. Earlier this year I was asked how I could live in such a corrupt community. The truth is, my community is no more corrupt than any other in the U.S. We are a small town with a big time crime and we did not have experience in these types of matters and it showed.




Support

All that said, I still support law enforcement 100%, even when they make mistakes. I know I never did anything wrong in my life, but for the rest of you so prone to indiscretions, need watching. Police work is not the most dangerous job in America, but it ranks up there. Police officers volunteered to take the job they do so I expect a level of professionalism even if part of the job description is getting shot at.

All police are highly trained. Most police officers are a credit to their uniform and profession. Pride causes police officers to defend an officer who crossed the line due to pride. It does not make them bad officers; it makes them human. It is easier to denigrate the accountants at Enron than for a police officer to chastise another officer in public. Public trust is the one thing that helps keep officers safe. Hence, the blue code of silence. You know as well as I we would both act the same way in the same circumstance.

Gunning for a Cop

Is there any legal job outside law enforcement where people actively try to kill you due to your profession? The military, sometimes. Drug dealers, sure, but that is not a legal job. There are people who want to kill cops just because they are cops! That is really messed up.

Minneapolis Police Squad CarThere is a logical reason for these people to want to kill law enforcement officers. They want to kill the defenders so the rest of us are more vulnerable. Think about that. When the manure hits the fan we all want the police to show up. We know police are our best chance at safety when things go wrong. When police are busy staying alive, we are at greater risk.

The recent news of so many killings of unarmed black men by white police officers has caused some to retaliate. A small number of bad white police officers who think black people are niggers and deserve to die stand out due to their devastating behavior. We can’t let the bastards win! I am white and so I enjoy white privilege. I like white privilege and refuse to give it up. Rather than me give up my privilege, how about we extend the same privileges to our black brothers. Just a thought. Maybe I am all fucked up in the head, but I personally think black people would be a lot happier with my privileges in life rather than bringing me down to their privilege level. Ah, must be my mental illness talking.

Let’s think about this a bit more. You read the news and learn another unarmed man has died at the hands of the police and it really looks bad. The cocksucker also looks like he is going to get away with it. Fucking police! So you get a gun and gun down a random police officer to send a message. But what did you really do? Remember, ninety-nine percent of police officers are courageous, dedicated, honorable, and professional men and women. The odds are you killed a good one. Did that really make your life better? What message did you really send killing an honest family man?

baltimore_police_officers_at_camden_yards

I’m not saying the Baltimore police did everything right. What I am asking is for you to think of the situation from their perspective. Then realize they are human. They look like a serious group of guys trying to keep a community safe under less than ideal conditions to me.

Environment

In America we have more guns per capita than anywhere in the world. I doubt war zones have as many weapons per person. Now with many states legalizing concealed carry and assault rifles legal, police are asked to walk into dangerous situations woefully outgunned. Ask yourself, Would you walk into a violent situation with that little pop gun most police carry at their side when the bad guys are sporting AK-47 assault rifles? I’d quit. And so would you.

Unless you are a police officer. They stay on the job, ask for some leeway, and keep showing up for work—and keep getting shot at! Now that I think of it, they are fucking insane. They must have medication for that by now. Must be one of those medications Martin Shkreli got his hands on and jacked the price 12,000%. Can’t afford that on an officer’s wage.

I have a suggestion when dealing with the police. Always show your hands so there is no question as to your intentions. Act professional even if the officer is not. Everybody has a bad day. If somebody shot one of my co-workers in another state I would be having a bad day too! I’d also be a bit trigger happy. Put yourself in the officer’s place and look at it from her viewpoint. What do you see then? I’m not tell you to answer any questions asked because that may be a bad idea. I would recommend following orders. The police have a job to do and once you start pushing they get nervous. How could they not? The officer does not know all the facts and does not have adequate time to figure it out. Taking you into custody is the one thing she can do to get more time to figure out what the heck is going on.

I also empathize with black people and other minorities. I wish I could say I understand, but no white person in America can truly understand what black people experience every day. All I want is for the police to stop killing—or even shooting or beating—unarmed black people. I want a safe neighborhood where the police are tough with suspects while maintaining professionalism just in case the suspect is innocent. I want police to get home safe to their families, too. The best day is a boring day at the office for them. Welcome to my world, officer, isn’t it great?

Black communities have suffered disproportionately. Regardless, I think 99% of black people respect and trust police, even if with guarded caution. Black communities want the same thing white communities want: safe, crime-free neighborhoods where their kids and family are safe.




What does this have to do With Money or Wealth?

Wealth creation and preservation is easier in a safe society with laws and rules. People forget how powerful a force police are in keeping our nation safe AND prosperous. My business exists because people don’t blow my building up or rob me daily. The police have something to do with that crime prevention. Even when the police are not around, people intent on harm know the police will be relentless once the crime is discovered. Without police Mrs. A and the girls would be at constant risk; even with police it is a concern. I can’t imagine the world my girls would live in without the threat of police action against those who harm women or children.

Without police I would probably be kidnapped and murdered when I refused to shut-up. (Who needs money when the shrill whine of this damn accountant never stops?) The next time you are critical of the police and their activities, also realize the vital role they play in our society and in our local communities. The men and women in blue are less than perfect, but they bust their asses every day to keep our world a safer and happier place. That allows me (and you) to run a business successfully, make a lot of money, preserve wealth, invest, create jobs, provide goods and services, and live a comfortable life.

I lift my glass to the men and women who dedicate their life to making mine better. Now I need to remember not to drive after lifting that glass or I’ll be sent to the slammer for drinking and driving. Damn cops.




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Keith Schroeder

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