To The Daily Sun,
These past few months and years, law enforcement has been severely tested. There have been multiple incidents where law enforcement activity resulted in the deaths of either suspects or innocent black men, or texted bias on cell phones. People may think all law enforcement is alike. This is not the case.
In spite of these tragedies, local police, FBI, etc. can be proud, for the jobs they do in their daily activities. Every law officer puts his/her life on the line, either on duty or off, from the moment they complete the requirements of their office and take the oath. Their job is to protect all citizens, even suspects and criminals to ensure rights are not compromised. It is a sad day when the officer never returns home to his family again.
A New Hampshire State Trooper or local police officer puts his/her life on the line patrolling the highways and interstates. A traffic stop puts them at risk for being hit by the speeders on the roads. Who knows who is in that car? Is it a criminal on the run? Is the person armed? Is it a person upset and distracted by emotional issues? Is there a child in trouble in the car? A woman under attack and frightened? The trooper/officer must be prepared for anything when approaching the stopped car. More than most professions, they are called upon to make correct decisions rapidly, on the spur of the moment. Incidents may be simple, others complicated, tragic. It could be matter of helping someone.
Local law enforcement officers do multiple duties: investigations, traffic control, construction protection and own civil matters. New Hampton Police is one example of fine men and women who protect all of their town. Home break-ins are handled professionally, assurances provided to the residents. Timely tips are given to prevent another event. Medical emergencies, accidents, they are usually there before EMS many times, offering first aid whenever they can. Some officers may be EMTs with oxygen and defibrillators. They provide heads-up to approaching EMS teams and fire companies. Life saving medications are provided to people with addictions.
We deplore these recent news of police tragedies. Please remember, one needs to put yourself in their shoes. Some officers do make mistakes. This does not and should not reflect on the entire law enforcement officers. "Bad apples" may exist. In time, they will face justice. These fine men and women who ride our roads, walk their beat, take to their bikes (both foot and motor), are indeed ones we can count on to protect their communities and civic/public events (i.e., Bike Week, etc.).
If you should encounter an officer, whether to say hello, or being stopped, please give them the respect they deserve, and make that moment an easy one for them (and yourself). Please be the one that enables them to go home with a smile on their face and in their hearts. They may have another even harder incident to deal with. Lessen their stress load. Give them encouragement, and make their day.
Robert T. Joseph, Jr.
- Category: Letters
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