Thursday, August 16, 2012

THE ONLY ONES

Every time I hear it out loud, or read printed words, calling a law enforcement officer (LEO) one of THE ONLY ONES if he or she has an accidental discharge, whether or not due to negligence, I get a little fired up. You see, to compare every LEO to the DEA agent who shot himself after saying in essence 'I am the only one, I know of, qualified in this room to handle a firearm' is ludicrous. As a matter of fact, they way the whole ONLY ONES thing is often stated, it makes it appear as if that DEA agent, and every other law enforcement officer in the United States of America, made the statement that only LEOs are qualified to carry firearms. That was not the meaning of the DEA agent's statement at all, listen to the video, you have to be a raving anti-law enforcement person to arrive at such a conclusion. The DEA agent was in effect just telling the children in the class that they should not handle firearms if not in some way qualified or instructed in how to do so, his meaning was pretty obvious or should have been even to a moron. All that aside, yeah, he did something very stupid in how he shot himself, I would bet he never does it again because pain can make you smarter.

All that I just said though does not explain why it gets me miffed when I hear references to THE ONLY ONES in that sarcastic or outright friggin nasty manner in which term is usually conveyed. Nope, it is not even that anyone says it with sarcasm or with anger or nastiness that gets me fired up. What gets me fired up is that the same disrespectful shitheads who group all LEOs together as some anti-gun rights group of ONLY ONES, never for a moment even consider that those same officers are truly, just about (and I said just about because there are some rare folks who are not LEOS that would do this) face the danger every day of being run over, attacked by animals (both two legged and 4 legged), beaten, tabbed, gunned down just because they are law enforcement officers in protecting you and yours. No this is not a debate so please do not start one and don't tell me how you should be free to own guns to protect yourself. If you know me at all, you know I think we should be free to own Abrams tanks to overthrow a tyrannical government if need be; I truly believe that was the intent of the inclusion of  the 2nd Amendment in the Bill of Rights - to assure the people kept the power over the government and not the other way around as it almost seems now.

No, this is about something else. It is about a class of people, not the bad apples, but the 90% or more who are truly good guys in law enforcement. A class of people who rush to shooting, stabbings, muggings, 9/11 catastrophes, to help those in need and possibly to face life threatening situations. And it is about they to whom it seemingly does not matter that they indiscriminately use the term the ONLY ONES to insult and demean LEOs who quite frankly may not, for even a second, deserve that term applied to them, in a negative manner, no matter what the incident in which they are involved. To those name callers, it does not matter if the LEOs are liberals, conservatives, libertarians, gun haters, gun lovers, lifetime NRA members, fathers, mothers, sons, daughters - they just know that if a cop, or other LEO, fucks up with a gun - he must be an ONLY ONE. How immature and how sad that such a view point exists in light of incidents like this:

http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/08/16/13315235-two-louisiana-deputies-killed-in-ambush-shootings?lite

You know, when I think of these apparent ambush style cop shootings, and when I think of officers who died in events like the destruction at the World Trade center on 9/11/2001, and when I think of cops delivering babies, or pulling people out of car wrecks, or federal agents risking their lives to try to stem the flow of illegal aliens and narcotics at our borders, or an undercover federal agent setting up terrorists for the fall, or a cop climbing a tree to rescue a darned cat, or any other number of things that most other folks would not do in a million years, because they think it is an LEOs job to put themselves in Harm's Way, well then that is when I think that yes indeed - law enforcement officers do deserve the title of THE ONLY ONES. Yeah sure, cops enforce the law but nowhere in any job description I have ever seen for an LEO does it say they have to put themselves in danger to save any one's sorry butt. Yet they do it all the time, and while some gun bloggers acknowledge this, I never have heard certain so called hard core pro-gun bloggers give these cops a nod of approval. They sure do slam them if ever they have a chance and an accidental discharge of a firearms seems all they need whether they know the facts surrounding it or not. All without knowing the officers stance on gun control at that.



As a matter of fact, the person from whose mouth I most recently heard the words THE ONLY ONES used in a somewhat negative manner against LEOs also had recently mentioned that he, in essence, quite possibly would not act like a cop in a situation where others (besides himself or his family) were being harmed by an evil doer. He would protect his family and himself and leave the rest to the cops. I am not saying I blame him, it takes a certain type of individual to guard the flock beyond your own immediate family. (By the way, no names, this is no attack on the person who said that, it is just a reiteration of something to give an example of what I am saying from real life. Please, no one take any offense to me using that example.) Nope, most people, even those who are 100% pro right to keep and bear arms, those who carry every day, those who consider themselves ready for action against bad guys, quite possibly would not help other citizens in dire need in such cases. Yet, LEOs are expected to go out of their way to do so each and every day. In fact, LEOs do that each and every day. Still, they are only considered THE ONLY ONES if they screw up. What a joke but not a funny one.

Yep, they truly are THE ONLY ONES but in a very different context than what most folks mean by it when they say it. When I say it I mean it in a very positive light.

Sure, there are LEOs whose heads are so far up their asses they are truly beyond hope - probably should not be cops just because of bad attitude but my bet is that copy is not going to ask you if you are pro-gun or anti-gun if he is saving your life from drowning, pulling you out of wreck, giving you a ride to the hospital, getting an attacker off of you, helping your wife have a baby, or whatever.Try to remember, please, they are citizens too and they do have the right to their political opinions and their own convictions, and they certainly do not have to be the same as yours or mine. There are also bad LEOs. Let's face it, some could probably have done quite well as members of any hate group of which you can think and some are outright criminals.

The truth is though that the great majority of LEOs are good guys and gals and they do not deserve being slammed in a discriminatory manner without knowing anything about them other than maybe one had an accidental and maybe even a negligent firearms discharge. Why not also give them their due and honor those who serve so well, to protect us, to help us, to uphold the law (remember we vote in the jerks that legislate those laws, the LEOs just enforce them) and who face serious an sometimes even life threatening danger on an all too frequent basis. Why not stop using such a derogatory term as THE ONLY ONES in reference to any LEO whom you pretty much know nothing about. If he is a rabid anti-gun person and truly believes that only cops are qualified to own guns, fine - fire away. But again, why is it I so rarely hear praise for the good things LEOs do from the same folks the likes of whom so frequently slam the police at every chance they get.

All the best,
Glenn B

9 comments:

YeOldFurt said...

My response:
http://www.policemisconduct.net/
AND the "good cops" cover for the "bad cops", therefore they get painted with the same brush. When the "good cops" start cleaning up their own house.....maybe I'll believe you.
YeOldFurt

Glenn B said...

See folks, that is what I mean, some people will never see good in any law enforcement officer - right away the above person sees some evil conspiracy of the good covering for the bad. He made my point for me.

Now, if you really want to live by the words you just printed, start believing that LEOs do all those things I said because I was an LEO for 32 years and turned in at least 3 bad LEOs to my superiors. One was reprimanded and lost job time, another was an NYPD cop who went under his own department's internal investigation (I do not know the outcome, I was not privy to it) and another was prosecuted, went to jail and was fired. But of course, why would you believe me about any of that because me being a good LEO most certainly, by your manner of thinking, must have covered for the bad ones. by the way, I was not unusual in what I did, I know many other LEOs with a great deal of integrity, in fact the great majority I know would never cover for another LEO committing crimes.

Not to believe that good LEOs do all the things I mentioned, is rather ludicrous when you can read about it in the news quite frequently. There is the proof they are doing good. If you say, oh that is the media - how can you believe it, then I have to wonder how can you beleivce anything about reports of bad cops as well.

Where is your proof that ACTUAL GOOD LEOs cover for bad. It is an impossibility. If a LEO covers for another who has commited a crime or other violation, it makes that one just as bad - he is not good, he too is bad. Yet somehow, in what seems to me to be a twisted view of good versus bad, you equate good LEOs with bad, by way of cover-up conspiracies, thus making them all bad. That is truly mind boggling.

All the best,
Glenn B

Glenn B said...

The only one I can reference in news reports, as the others were departmental:

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9B0DE5DB1630F931A15750C0A9609C8B63

YeOldFurt said...

Whoa up there Glenn, take a breath. As far as me never seeing good LEOs, that's not true. My Dad was an LEO for Houston PD. The Sheriff's Office here is packed with them and I'd trust my back to any of them. I also know the DPS that patrols around my neck of the woods and trust the hell out of them too. The common factor with all of them is that they don't put up with BS and mistreating the citizens. They use common sense and don't "just follow orders". They all believe in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. I hang out with them and shoot with them.
My point was/is that blind faith and belief is stupidity, so don't be putting words into my mouth that don't belong there.
Like a lot of retired LEOs, you've fallen into the mindset they're all as good as you were and that's not the case. When officers have to live and work with folks that know them and live side-by-side with them, they treat them different. More respectful as citizens and not arbitrary "dirt-bags".
Sure, the real miscreants deserve as much "force" as required to place them in custody and remove them from society, but quite a bit of the time, we see too much force used on someone that's not needed.
My point of including the link was to illustrate how some LEOs transgress without being punished. Other examples include the deaths by LEOs in Arizona and Las Vegas and I could go way back even further. Has there been ANY ramifications on those LEOs? Are those LEOs "good ones"?
YeOldFurt

Glenn B said...

Your words seemingly lumped LEOs altogether by saying they get painted with the same brush and by saying the good ones do something bad (which is what covering for other bad cops would be). It seemed pretty obvious that it equates all cops as bad because of the way you said it. You left much to the imagination in that brief comment but explain yourself much better in the second. My apologies for my obvious misinterpretation.

Your imagination goes overboard as well.

"Like a lot of retired LEOs, you've fallen into the mindset they're all as good as you were and that's not the case. "

It has nothing to do with retirement, I am not some type of nostalgic dreamer. I am calling it the same way I have called it throughout my career, as I see it (now as I have seen it and that is the only difference in retirement except that I am older). I have not fallen into any trap. What I see are good LEOs and bad, with the majority being good. Sure there are bad LEOs. I do not for one moment believe that all are good. In my estimation, based on the literally thousands of other LEOs I have worked with and seen working over the years, I do believe that at least 80 up to about 90 percent probably are good. That is based upon my experience and what I have seen in the news and in the courts. What I saw were good honest Joes and Janes doing good work with some bad ones giving all a bad name because they get painted as being the same. Truth is though, the bad apples I saw got weeded out and in the great majority of such cases it was another LEO who started the weeding. The thing about bad cops though, that makes people paint with wide brushes, is that they get almost all the media coverage unless good cops are involved in a catastrophe and there is serious injury or loss of life.

You rarely hear about the LEO who went out of his way to help old ladies cross the street, who plodded through case after case with good results, who worked hard on patrol in lousy conditions, who did good paperwork, who was honest. You hear about the bad apples, rotten to the core, who make the best press You hear about those who are slaughtered like the cops in the article to which I linked in my post because they too, sadly, make good press.

I do not exercise blind faith in my beliefs, I am one of the most skeptical and cynical people I know of and question almost everything then demand proof of virtually everything. My current belief that most are good is not based upon blind faith but on expereince. Yet, I know there are bad ones without a doubt. I had little problem reporting suspected bad LEOs at work nor reporting things like possible rights violations nor do many other officers. In fact, not long before I retired, I was called as a witness for the plaintiff in a rights violation law suit against the government, my agency in particular. I was there because of an email to my supervisor in which I had reported what I believed were possible rights violations that I had witnessed while on a major operation. So sure I know there are bad LEOs out there. I keep saying it, you seemed to have missed it.

What I am also saying is that there are plenty of good LEOs out there too and that they get lumped in with the bad by people just waiting for an officer to have an accidental and possibly negligent firearms discharge. Then they pounce on that officer without regard for his stance on the second amendment and gun rights and label the officer as one of THE ONLY ONES (a cop who believes only cops are qualified to carry firearms). Even that mindset was made up by these bloggers with regard to the term as it was first used, that is how screwed up is their regsard for law enforcement.
Doing that truly is painting with a wide brush or in other words is negative large scale bias based on no evidence at all. That was my point in a nutshell, I never once lumped all LEOs together as good.

All the best,
GB

YeOldFurt said...

Glenn,
Respectfully, this is your blog and your rant.
I, personally, would like to sit down with you over coffee sometime. I respect you and your opinion and do have my own thoughts.
In regards to that respect, I reckon I should allow this discussion to continue (or not) in other venues. I'm not abandoning the field, but I shall not allow the specter of being disrespectful on your blog.
With civility and respect,
YeOldFurt

Glenn B said...

I don't think you were disrespectful, at certainly not toward me. I hope you do not think I was being disrespectful to you. I say what I beleive based on what I have to go by. My apology, for my misunderstanding of your first post, was quite sincere. Hope I offered no offense in my third reply, sure did not mean to. By the way, if you are ever near NYC area and Long Island, let me know, maybe we can get together for a coffeee of even a beer if so inclined.

All the best,
Glenn B

Glenn B said...

Folks, what can I say but I have to respect a guy like YeOldFurt, who apparently disagrees with me pretty strongly (even though I think maybe we are not all that far apart in our beliefs) but who does not want to become offensive to the point of being disrespectful in his replies to me. He is a gentleman.

Wow, did I get him wrong when I replied to his first comment! Yes I did, even if he and I disagree! I do not give a turtle's tooth if he and I disagree, I do not think he does either. In fact, I think disagreement to be a good and great thought provoking process as long as it remains civil. So, if we can disagree with respect for one another's point of view (which I hope I maintained even though my reply to his first comment may have been a bit harsh if only because I apparently misunderstood his intent)then that is a wonderful thing.

TOO BAD THAT SEEMINGLY DOES NOT HAPPEN IN THE POLITICAL ARENA ANY LONGER! If politicians and their supporters disagreed in such a manner, we would be much better off because if they had respect for one another it would indicate they had respect for all of America.

YeOldFurt, I think, is a good American no matter any potential disagreements betwixt us.

All the best,
Glenn B

boarshide said...

Glenn, I too find it a bit insulting when I hear the term "Only ones" and how it is used on some of the blogs I read and some of the "cop hate". I just concluded my career (30 years LEO/So.Cal Jail/Patrol/DB) and during that time I investigated/stopped/caught robbers,burglars,rapists,kidnappers,murderers etc etc on duty and three incidents off duty! Did I get bonus pay for this ? no. Did I place my life in danger to the consternation of my wife and parents? yes. Why? because I wanted to stop the bad guys from destroying the lives of good people. During my career, I lost partners to gangsters gunfire and some who were fired for various crimes or policy violations. As you know, being a cop is not always easy. Being a crook is probably the easiest thing to be. Yes there are bad cops or crooks who wear the uniform. I worked a unit (not IA) that specifically investigated allegations of "criminal conduct." There were a few and if the DA filed the case, they went to trial. Some went to prison, some didn't. I look at www.lineofduty.com for their coverage of police activity across the nation, some good, some bad. I delivered a baby, crashed my patrol cars,got time off without pay for various policy violations,went to cop funerals,fed and clothed the homeless, particularly during the winter months,gave my personal gear and extra money away (sleeping bags, clothes etc. Some of my friends/officers I associated were/are of my mindset. We are Patriots,Dems,Reps,NRA,meat eaters, vegetarians, male, female,gay and straight. When I became a supervisor I guided the young officers and tried to impart my way of handling things, always spirit of the law, not letter of the law. Anyways, I'm tired of writing..I have 30 years worth of stories to tell, like you I sure! Take care.Ps I personally don't like CHP officers but, They're not all bad! LOL. And during my career I called in sick...one time!