The amount of trust, integrity, and privilege of being in a position of authority is like a category 4 hurricane in full meltdown. A hurricane is a force of nature that is both inspiring and powerful; it has the potential to leave a path of destruction in its wake; at the same time, it is an inspiring sight when it doesn’t cause damage or loss of life. For law enforcement professionals, the same principle applies. There is an oath one takes to protect, serve and uphold justice when there is a need for it. These individuals in such roles have a lot to deal with on a daily basis and are willing to put themselves in positions that the average individual is unwilling to do.
Keeping the public safe often provides an adrenaline rush similar to racing a wave runner at 70+mph, downhill mountain bike racing at 30+mph, or getting slammed by that wave you just caught while surfing or body boarding. Now there are a lot of times some situations spiral out of control; after all, nothing in life is certain; everything is a risk, and law enforcement professionals often acquire a “bad rap”. Not everyone in these positions deserves this type of negative stigma. It doesn’t take much just to say thank you. Sometimes that’s all’s it takes to make someone’s day. This goes for anyone, regardless of profession.
Regardless of the role, critical thinking is a necessity and has to be done quickly without bias. For example: Let’s say your role is a supervisory one, which may entail releasing a colleague and / or subordinate from her or his position due to inappropriate conduct. When that employee is armed, as are you, the situation could easily turn hostile, and it does. Unpredictability reigns.
So, what is the point of this blog post? In any situation in life, while you may be able to measure outcomes in some situations, in many it is challenging to anticipate exactly how a fellow human being will respond. (Sound similar to the hurricane analogy from the first paragraph?) So, the next time you are pulled over in your vehicle, or encounter a member of law enforcement, keep in mind he or she is not there to purposely make your life hell or out to get you. That officer pulling you over might just be letting you that you have an open gas cap. That security officer just might be saying hello, or that Park Ranger might just want to make sure everyone is ok.
See you in the next post!