Today while reviewing a blog entry on Officer.com, a pro-law enforcement website, I found the second comment from Callahan very intriguing:
I know this is a rather simplistic view, but these were not cops. They are criminals who wore a uniform. Real cops do not commit crimes.
Being a former officer myself, I was immediately captivated by this summary. I agree that the people who were discussed in the article and allegedly stole drugs from their department are "criminals who wore a uniform" — but only once they are convicted. I bet now those officers are really looking for a criminal defense attorney, sorry guys, I’m not licensed in Tennessee….
But the followup to that is so far from the truth…
Regardless of what someone says, we all commit crimes. Even if it is speeding, and we know that most cops do that because of the old belief in "professional courtesy" and taking care of one another, that is a crime. If Callahan were correct, I would have much more respect for officers overall, but I have seen and heard far too much from officers that I worked with and people that they knew… from those who raced around in their modified sports cars to some who are members of motorcycle possees (‘aka gangs’), we all have a history.
In sum, it is this "holier than thou" attitude that so many officers maintain that really bothers me about the profession and caused me to leave it. It is not so much that an officer is focused on doing his or her duty and upholding the law, but it is the gile and disgust that so many exhibit towards the rest of us mere mortals that is offensive.
But I assure you, real cops do commit crimes… even if they are minor ones.