Sunday, November 21, 2010

Defending those who protect and serve us

I am the wife of a Retired Ottawa Police Sergeant and the stepmother of an Ottawa Police constable.  There are days when I feel like all I do is defend the Police in general.  Lately there has been a lot of negative press in Ottawa on the conduct of Police Officers in several different arrests.  I could go on for pages on all the wonderful things Police do for us everyday, but of course they are just doing their job.  It kills me how people are appalled when they read something in the paper about the Police, my issue is that the story is usually one sided, you never hear the side of the Police officer. 
The other day I watched a video from the G20 demonstration in Toronto and there was a woman blowing bubbles in a Police Officer's face and he asked her to stop and she continued and he quietly said to her if you don't stop I could arrest you.  She was arrested but not for blowing the bubbles.  The video then showed a group whom decided that since the demonstrators being arrested was so traumatic they needed a bubble blowing picnic at a park.  The next part of the video showed some guy babbling on about the Police and the SIU, and how of all the SIU investigations only like 1% ended in a charge to the Police officer and how terrible that is.  I wanted to climb in the video and freak out.  I showed the video to my husband and asked him if people were seriously that gullible.  He looked at me and said like I have told you before Common Sense isn't Common to everybody. 
I was upset by the Video and my husband told me not to dwell on it, it really wasn't a  big deal. Unfortunately the public likes to dwell on what they perceive as the Police doing wrong, instead of the criminals that set a $150,000 car on fire that the tax payers will now have to replace.  The Vandals who broke shop windows of innocent shop owners, God forbid Society should fault them, no they would rather sympathize with the poor bubble blowing woman who by blowing bubbles after the Officer asked her to stop was technically assaulting him (just like spitting on him).  The SIU ranter who has no idea what the SIU is or what they do.  They are a Special Investigations Unit made up of Civilians and the odd Retired Officer, they are called in anytime a Police Officer pulls his gun or is involved in an accident involving a Civilian and a Police Officer.  They are there to provide a unbiased investigation.  It usually reveals the Officer was just doing his job and followed proper procedure.  Yet when I read or see this stuff I very seldom see anyone defending the Police Officers.
Even as the wife of a Retired Police Officer I didn't see or hear about the majority of the stuff my husband had to deal with everyday.  I remember one day he came home and appeared quite sad and I asked him what was wrong and he told me that he had to go to 8 deaths that day, As a Sergeant he was required to attend any death his platoon Officers were called to.  Some days were harder than others, and like he often tells me he loved his job because everyday was different.  Some days he wasn't paid nearly enough, and others he was paid too much, but he wouldn't have traded it for anything.
I read the stories and like the rest of the public sometimes think holy crap !!  Then I discover the real story (that the public never hears) and I think what the heck if the public only knew the real story they would be shocked.  Yet it is a lot easier to put blinders on and believe that the horrible things people do to the Officers while they are being arrested or even stuff they do in the cells knowing they are being monitored never actually happened, some of it would make you sick, and definitely disgust you, yet we never hear about it. 
I wish we could always see and hear both sides before we make a judgement, but in the case of the Police we never seem to.  My husband reminds me that Police are Public servants and are always in the public eye, and that I may be considered bias being married to one.  I may be bias, but I am also proud of all the Police Officers because I know that if I call 911 an Officer is going to respond and help me with whatever situation I have called them for.  I trust them and I respect them because I know their job is to serve and protect me and my family and friends.  So I will continue to defend them and stand up for them and believe in them, and give them the benefit of the doubt no matter how they are portrayed in the media until I myself hear the full story.  The arrestee's story will always be taken with a grain of salt, as I know the Police aren't in the habit of going around and arresting innocent people, they are way too busy with the criminals.  As for our Criminal Justice system don't even get me started ......

No comments:

Post a Comment