Our police officers put their lives on the line for us every single day. A simple traffic stop could end in a fatality because that is life today in America. When we read or see on the news people and officials promoting “defund the police,” I simply cringe at how ridiculous it would be to do this. Our police officers deserve to be respected for everything they do to protect our lives, our homes, our businesses, and communities. I can’t image life without police protection in our country and I am grateful for all they do. These are very brave men and women and we should be thankful and support them in every way we can. Citizens should respect each officer’s position of authority within the community. Very often you will find that your respect will be paid back by the officer.
Mutual Respect Guidelines for Citizens
- Remain calm.
- Keep your hands where officer(s) can see them
- Address police officer(s) as “officer” or “officers”
- Tell the officer(s) if you have a weapon and its location
- Tell the officer(s) your name and address when asked
- Answer the officer(s)’ questions truthfully
- Comply with the officer(s)’ instructions
- Ask for assistance if you need it
Over the years I have gotten to know some police officers and, from various conversations, I see them as dedicated and kind individuals. My uncle Pete was a New York police officer and, when visiting him in New York, he would often take me on his lunch break to Little Italy where we would be treated like royalty. Those days need to return in our country, and it can start with each and every one of us.
Please don’t confuse the current “Blue Lives Matter” movement with respecting and honoring our police departments and individuals. This movement was formed in December 2014 after the homicides of NYPD officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu in Brooklyn, New York. Blue Lives Matter is a countermovement in the United States advocating that those who are prosecuted and convicted of killing law enforcement officers should be sentenced under hate crime statutes. There are various opinions about this organization, but I don’t feel qualified to comment one way or the other on its activities.
Check with your local police department to see what you can do to help the department, or consider donating to the National Police Association, which is a 501(C)3 non-profit organization, EIN 82-0647764, founded to educate supporters of law enforcement in how to help police departments accomplish their goals. The National Police Association is supported solely through the generous contributions of individuals and organizations. Donations are tax-deductible.
Just remember our safety counts on these dedicated professionals who should have our utmost respect.