The recent incidents of perpetrators throwing buckets of water or spraying police officers with water guns has outraged most reasonable citizens while others say, “Ah come on man, it’s only water…what’s the big deal?”
Today it’s water, tomorrow it’s gasoline, bleach, acid, urine or anything imaginable made to humiliate and instigate an aggressive action from the officer. Failure for officers to utilize defensive tactics on the assumption water will not hurt you or the fear videos will record their appropriate response negatively by their superiors, media commentators or self-promoting politicians, will jeopardize their safety because of hesitation.
The lion tamer uses a whip and chair to control a 400-pound lion with the full knowledge that when respect is lost the lion will kill and eat the tamer. When the citizen loses respect for authority, the police officer in this case, then chaos and anarchy will rule the day and survival of the fittest will overtake the rule of law.
I learned quickly as a young beat officer that respect or fear equals compliance. Suspects that directed foul, disrespectful words against me would not receive endearing love and understanding but handcuffs and a ride to jail. Anything less would make it more difficult for the next officer who encountered that behavior.
As a Christian, I always had a difficult time with the precept of “turning the other cheek.” Street credibility was the currency I used daily. And when dealing with “the wolf,” I was a sheepdog that never wanted to be confused with a sheep.
Growing up in Miami, if I was pulled over by the Metro-Dade police department, I would either get shot, beat-up or a ticket. Considering those options, I was pretty glad to get the ticket. My parents taught me to respect the police and always told me if I got locked-up they wouldn’t bail me out…so don’t get locked-up. “For he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain.” Romans 13:4.
When I see these malcontents throwing water on police officers, I have but one question…where is Daddy? They do not respect themselves or authority for their identity is found in the mob, not the individual.
During these ongoing mass shootings, you see 99 percent of the people running for their lives from the threat and 1 percent – law enforcement – running toward the danger…because as crazy at it sounds, we want to “get some.” If there was ever an occupation more deserving of respect, it’s the law enforcement officer, who would lay down his life for a complete stranger. And humiliating them is trendy? Shame on the trendsetters.
My law enforcement training and street experience has left me a dinosaur unable to adapt to my ever changing environment as my brain is full of buttons that when pushed, with actions of disrespect, will trigger responses no longer acceptable to this politically correct world of whimpering crybabies.
I can tell you long before I retired, if some dirt bag tries to throw a bucket of water on me or my fellow officers to test our resolve you would not be disappointed if an action packed, scuffle in the street video is to your liking. Earning and maintaining respect in the criminal world I worked in is not for the faint of heart.
Nowadays, the only folks I bounce around are grandkids on my knee. Film away.
The Precinct Press is authored by W.J. Butcher, a retired 26-year veteran of the Atlanta Police Department. Send comments, kudos, and criticism to: firstname.lastname@example.org .