Ode to the career of a law officer: "We"
We are know by many names: police officer, trooper, marshal, sheriff, agent, inspector, and others
I recently finished teaching a college titled “Ethical Leadership in Criminal Justice”. Although the class consisted of forty students none of them were law enforcement personnel or have police experience. When we began discussing the police code of conduct and our oath of office it was readily apparent that although students were engaged, they did not have the background or experiences to fully appreciate what the oath means. They also didn’t have the frame of reference to truly know what law enforcement officers really do.
So I wrote this ode for my students, for those of us who have fallen, and to honor each and every one of you who have chosen a profession which calls us to step in harms way.
• are at our best when the people and things around us are at their worst
• defend the constitution, freedom, and the American way of life
• give comfort to those who society is uncomfortable with-the homeless, the helpless, the
• lead other centered lives-lives which make a significant difference to the people we serve
• willingly step in harms way to protect those who can not protect themselves
• give comfort to those who society is uncomfortable with-the homeless, the helpless, the battered, the weak, the old, the infirm and the oppressed
• give aid and sustenance to the injured and the dying
• are light children run smiling and laughing to-those who would steal their innocence cower in our presence
• defend the peoples right to speak and assemble regardless of their viewpoints, the color of their faces, their religion, their ethnic background, or social class
• are the long arm of the law, the defenders of justice, the pure of heart, the protectors of the homeland, the brave men and women ready to spill our blood to uphold our oaths of honor
• honor our dead, our traditions, and our creed
• seek nothing in return for our service-rejecting all who would seek to influence our actions through gift or favor
• cry alone — lest those who depend on us would lose heart in our suffering
• are courageous in the face of danger-we never retreat or shirk our duty
• stand alone and bow to no one in the pursuit of justice
• can not be influenced in the performance of our duty by others who have been out in position of authority or power
• are not a religious order, but like the Texas Rangers of old embraced our calling as a way of life — not a job or career
• recognize here are no retired or ex-lawmen-only those who are currently active and those waiting for the pipes to call them to duty once again
• know that evil is greatly attracted to the goodness in us and constantly guard against temptation in al its forms
• are the beacons of light in the darkness created by evil-the light of our shields give comfort to the forlorn and evil can not prevail against it
• gather as a group and the downcast are heartened, the outcast are hopeful, the needy rejoice, the old become invigorated, and the young sing songs of joy
• are the true Jedi nights, the night ranger, subservient to no one, yet humble in the presence of our brothers and sisters
• recognize that because we have a great capacity for love we also have a great capacity for sorrow and are constantly vigilant lest one of us should fall into the grips of despair-the siren call for all who live lives as care givers
• wear the medal and ribbons presented to us by our brothers and sisters only t pay homage to our mentors, teachers, and those who came before us and will come after us
• accept the insignia or promotion as a special privilege, trembling in fear of letting those down who have put their faith in us
• reject those who wear the badge and carry the gun, but have fallen to the dark side of pride, greed, temptation, abuse of power, and dishonor
• treat the disrespectful with respect, the addicted with dignity, the mentally challenged with kindness and fight evil with good
• answer the call to service though we may be tired or ill — in snowstorm or desert heat, in natural disaster or national holiday — putting the needs of others ahead of our own wives, husbands, sons and daughters
We are known by many names: police officer, trooper, marshal, sheriff, agent, inspector, and others. We are different, but yet the same. We all took the blood oath, we all step to the beart of the same drum, and we all answer the same call to serve.
We are law officers!
Be safe out there!
Larry the Jet