Tuesday, January 27, 2015


You can hash tag anything on social media and it will invariably lead you to a world wide web of similar posts/articles/pictures etc.  The one I look up often is #coplife.  It brings up a plethora of police memes and a few anti-law enforcement rants.  It also brings up a few real stories of real police officers who wear the badge each day to ultimately be a part of something bigger, something that makes a difference.

The difference it makes isn't just in the community.  It's also in us.  Sometimes good, sometimes bad.  Each of us sacrifice a piece of ourselves on every call for service.  One day we look in the mirror and see a faded version of the hotshot rookie who thought they were invincible.  The spark has left our eyes, the newness of the job worn off with a layer of crass and criticism formed.  Our response to certain crimes becomes desensitized.

Eventually you get to a level where there's more politics involved in a decision than there is toilet paper to wipe up the crap that follows.  It becomes harder to make the best decision for the people on the front lines and more about what the immediate response will be if we don't "do this now to appease the public".  Our actions have become governed by the media and restrained by our own fear of being the next headline racist even when we act under the color of law....even if we bare the same color of skin.  

Then there's that moment.  A moment that makes or breaks us as cops.  It makes us question our faith, our priorities, our morals.  Yes, it's fun to chase the bad guys, it's rewarding to catch them, but it's downright humbling when a true victim is able to say thank you. 

Fellow law enforcement officers have agreed to share those moments in order for me to write them down and share with others.  A few have said it was therapeutic and they were glad to have had the chance to finally talk about it.  I give full credit to the brave men and women I am so blessed to work with for opening old wounds, picking old scars, and allowing me to pry a little bit.  

More will be added in a second installment after I get the first one launched so message me if you'd like your #coplife story included.  

With each story I've edited and typed I saw a part of me in that officer/deputy.  It humbled me to know just how vulnerable we all are.  This is my #coplife.