It is unfortunate that the negativity associated with law enforcement gets most of the press today. We see the dissent for law enforcement taking the foreground in our news feeds, news websites and newspapers. What the public may not see on a daily basis, is the support for law enforcement growing as well. It is unfair to give only one side of the fence all the publicity. However, it seems as though the opposing team is the one making the most (and often inappropriate) noise.
It is imperative that those who oppose law enforcement know that there is an ever-growing opponent in those that support our men and women in blue. Just a few days ago I was buying coffee with a partner at Starbucks. A man in line insisted that he pay for our drinks. We, of course, insisted that he not spend his money on us, but that his support was appreciated. There is a big difference between those that show hate towards law enforcement and those that show support. Hate often comes in loud, inappropriate, overt acts of violence and protest, while support comes in small quiet acts of kindness.
While the opponents may be physically and audibly louder than the supporters, the quiet acts of kindness speak much louder lessons.
To those that oppose us, I ensure you that we are not wavered by your negative acts. We will not back down, we will not stop providing for the public, the public that you belong to. We will not stop serving you as we have sworn to do, despite your negativity thrown recklessly in our direction. Your non-support only goes to strengthen our unity, our resolve and our steadfast determination to serve justice when an injustice has been committed.
To those that support us, we often hear the phrase from your direction that “we see you”. Well I promise you and ensure you that it is we who see you. We see you day and night, with your kind waves of appreciation, your looks of fondness. We see it in your children as you embrace the fact that they want to talk to us, wave to us and refuse to pull them away from us and teach them hate. We see it when we step up to the cash register, only to figure out that our drink or meal has already been paid for and you have already disappeared, not wishing to be noticed, but only wishing to have taken part in an extremely kind act. We see it in the hugs, the posters, the blue porch lights, the FOP bumper stickers and the handshakes of appreciation. We see it in your regard for the law and your determination to take responsibility for your mistakes. We all, inevitably, make mistakes. We see your support in your understanding that we are human. I assure you, we understand you are human too. We see support in your compliance and in your respect.
There will come a time, and it is not too far away, where the support of our police men and women in this country will become far louder, metaphorically, than the dissent. We are very aware that the support for law enforcement is not the minority in this country. You are the silent majority.
We see you out there and, on behalf of all badge bearers, we thank you.