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Posted: 6/13/2003 11:22:23 AM EDT
Serious question, I'm honestly not trying to insult anyone in particular on the board, but I think this is a fair question from another side of the argument. Here's my outlook, so you can determine my 'bias' right from the start. I think that there is probably the same percentage of a-hole cops as there are a-holes in any profession (doctors, mechanics, accountants, pig farmers, etc...). MAYBE a bit higher percentage due to the high numbers of males in the profession and the nature of their work combined with the day-to-day shit that they see and have to put up with. Thus an accountant may be less likely to turn into a jerk, because he'll never go to work to see the body of a child who has just been killed by his father, or have a perp pull a gun on him during a traffic stop. Doesn't make it right, just puts the behavior into a new perspective. Now when I was a teenager, I thought the world was against me, and most cops seemed like a-holes to me, even though I NEVER had any experience that I would consider a violation of my civil rights. Sure I thought I was 'harassed' once or twice, but I probably deserved it for being in the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong people and having the wrong attitude. Even then, it was never more than a 'move along' type of response from the cops who were 'harassing' me. As an adult, I have never had a 'bad' experience with a police officer. Sure getting a ticket is a 'bad' experience on my end, but the officer was always respectful, and I showed him the same respect. Plus, I did the crime, so I should face the consequences, right? Hell, I've even been let off by officers with a warning several times, so why should I complain? So why is it that some people always run into 'bad' cops? My theory is that 'a-hole' people will more often be doing the activities that attract the most attention from cops, so after a while, they will begin to view any encounter with the cops as a negative one. If you compare two people of similar race and background, and present them to the same police officer in the same situation. Person A (clean record) will describe the experience as neutral or positive, while B ('a-hole' with a record) will describe the same experience as negative. Even if the cop is being polite and respectful, it is more likely that person B will do his best to escalate the incident and generally making the experience longer and more painful for both parties. I base a lot of this theory on the experiences of an a-hole I had the displeasure of knowing. The guy had about 4 DUIs (usually accompanied by possession charges) charges for resisting arrest/assaulting a police officer. It always baffled me that he hated cops so much because he based his hatred on this one incident: he was piss drunk, wrapped his car around a tree, and when the cops responded, he grabbed one officer by the throat and slammed him against the police car (the guy I knew was an ex-college football player, 6'+ and just under 300lbs). Although he should have been happy that the cop hadn't shot him on the spot, he forever hated cops because the second cop OC'd him when he had the first cop by the throat! He said they were 'pussies' for spraying him, since there were two of them and one of him! But I am of course assuming that not all cops are a-holes, if you don't agree with me, then that blows my theory out of the water...
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 11:28:43 AM EDT
Ever buy a red car? Then notice *how many* red cars there are? People see what they want to see, then make up "rules" about it, confirming their pre-existing beliefs. It's simple, really.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 11:30:00 AM EDT
There are assholes in every profession. Most of my encounters with police have been fair if not great. I was actually let off from a DWI doing 124mph on route 15 in New Jersey by a State Trooper when I was 19. I told him I was f'd up..really f'd up and going to my sisters to say good bye before going into the service. After the DWI test that I failed miserably, he ticketed me for a minor speeding violation. He then contacted the local authorities who in turn called my sisters house. They told them I had car trouble. My brother showed up with my sister. The Trooper told them I was lit like a kite and for one of them to drive the car to the house for me. Luck, compassion? I dont know. I was honest and he wasnt a dick. Thank the man above for that and this fine officer. Treat everyone with respect regardless of who they are...it will payoff in time.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 11:52:39 AM EDT
On any summer day my patrol area has 172,000 people in it, and only 2 to 5 cops. To get my attention you have to be trying pretty hard. If you are such a special person that you are the one guy out of 172,000 that I pick to contact, you probubly wont like me...
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 11:56:55 AM EDT
mostly good experience with cops, seems the women cops try to act real tough, I guess to intimidate you. Then I had a run in with a black cop I think he was trying to show his power over whitey in the middle class white neighborhood.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 12:06:48 PM EDT
Are most cops jerks?........probably not. Do jerks attract most cops?..probably so. CHRIS
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 12:13:37 PM EDT
No, most cops are honest hard working people doing a thankless job...BUT...just as in most professions, the bad eggs always get the press and give the rest a bad name. The fact that cops are under constant media scrutiny doesn't help either. I just wish the good ones wouldn't stick up for and cover for the bad ones.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 12:29:22 PM EDT
HKocher, I think your observation is pretty much accurate. I'll give you another data point. When I started out as a police officer 30 years ago, I had only spoken with a couple of policemen in my whole life. When I started patrolling, I found that I became more and more callous. I finally read some of Joseph Wambaugh's books and it was like a light coming on. He pointed out that policemen tend to deal with the 5% of the worse of society. We see the abused kids, the lying men and women, the cheats, the murderers, the thieves, etc. every day, all day. You finally began to believe that everyone is a scumbag. But they're not. Most people are pretty decent. It's just that as a LEO, you don't tend to deal with the good people. So, when you do deal with a decent person, you are so used to dealing with the scumbags, you tend to distrust the decent folks like the scumbags. When I finally got out of law enforcement, I was pretty cynical and bitter. It took a while, but now I'm my pleasant and wonderful self again.[:D] But I truly believe that if you treat most LEOs like you would like to be treated, they will do the same. "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." Good advise from the Good Book.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 12:38:01 PM EDT
I think they are not PETA people for sure, the way they decimate the canine population.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 12:39:44 PM EDT
Most cops are decent hard working people that believe it or not, dont have any big desire to trample someone's rights. Its like any other profession, it attracts assholes. But even the good guys have bad days in terms of how one interacts with the public. You get attitude from people in the private sector too. The fact of the matter is, when you deal with the same trogs day in and day out it does color your opinions and you have to make a conscious effort to remember that people you deal with the most arent most of the people.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 12:47:30 PM EDT
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 12:56:57 PM EDT
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 12:57:27 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Lumpy196: Most cops are decent hard working people that believe it or not, dont have any big desire to trample someone's rights. Its like any other profession, it attracts assholes. But even the good guys have bad days in terms of how one interacts with the public. You get attitude from people in the private sector too. The fact of the matter is, when you deal with the same trogs day in and day out it does color your opinions and you have to make a conscious effort to remember that people you deal with the most arent most of the people.
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True. While the guy in the thread about shooting the dog is an obvious dumbass who is too stupid to be trusted with anything involving more than 2 moving parts, that guy ain't your typical cop. I myself have never met what I would call a "bad" cop. I don't even consider getting a traffic ticket, or even getting arrested for "creating a public disturbance" (a long time ago, when I was young & stupid) a bad experience. I fucked up, and got nailed for it. No biggie; take the hit, and drive on. It's dumb to generalize cops, just like it's dumb to generalize any group as a whole. I have nothing but respect for cops; I have nothing but contempt, however, for a dumbass. The cop that shot the dog is simply a dumbass, and while he deserves all the bashing we can throw at him for THAT, cops in general don't deserve it.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 1:04:30 PM EDT
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 1:09:16 PM EDT
I think your observations are correct. Most of the time when the cops stop you it's for a damn good reason.
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Like 10 miles over the limit and such, right. In a area where there are no kids, homes are hundreds of feet of the road, and you are not a threat of harm to anyone, like I said right.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 1:12:42 PM EDT
There are no such things as "jerk cops", but there are civilians with attitude problems who disrespect law and order.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 1:17:07 PM EDT
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 1:19:28 PM EDT
I think to some degree a large percentage of police officers in this region of the country (southwest) are pretty piss-poor. And I attribute that to the level of pay and benefits in many departments; i.e., if a department wants to attract and keep good people, they need to offer a good level of pay. Most of the bigger and state supported departments in Oklahoma pay well and hence, have fewer problems with their officers. The opposite is true of the small town departments here. Most pay less than $20K a year for a full-time officer and it seems MONTHLY, there's some bag of shit making the news for drug crimes, sexual assault, burglary, etc. Now just what kind of person do you think is willing to perform a potentially dangerous job for that kind of money? I'm not just basing these observations on how I was treated in a traffic stop or whatever. I know and have known people who've worked for all types of departments here and I can often tell a distinct difference in attitudes. The better paid guys seem more stable, are generally better educated, and are just more professional. Yes? No? Maybe? Am I full of shit?
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 1:22:14 PM EDT
Originally Posted By cyanide:
I think your observations are correct. Most of the time when the cops stop you it's for a damn good reason.
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Like 10 miles over the limit and such, right. In a area where there are no kids, homes are hundreds of feet of the road, and you are not a threat of harm to anyone, like I said right.
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I don't mean to pick on Cyanide, since I've already called him an A-hole on other threads [;)] but this is a little of what I was talking about. It seems like the guys bitching about cops, usually admit to doing wrong, but they always justify their actions and blame the cop for being an a-hole and busting them. "Sure I was going 15MPH over the speed limit, but nobody was around." "Sure I was smoking crack, but I was doing it in the privacy of my own home." "I drive better when I'm stoned/wasted" "That guy needed killing anyway." This is a bit of an exaggeration, but my point is that if you're doing something that you know is illegal, be prepared to face the consequences wether you think it's fair or not. Seems like the guys who are always complaining that cops act as if they are above the law, also believe THEMSELVES to be above the law.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 1:22:33 PM EDT
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 1:30:53 PM EDT
My dad, who is a retired cop, got ahold of me after I had been on the job for about 5 years and I thought I knew everything. I was already the head of my unit and coming up fast but I felt like shit all of the time and was trying to remember why I even wanted the job in the first place. He saw what was happening to me already and told me what should have been obvious, we only get called when something is SO SERIOUSLY F_'ed UP that no one knew what else to do but call us. When you spend all your time with the scum, the whole world looks like scum. Dad told me to spend more time with the living and less time with "the dead". I'm not a hard-ass and have been told by my own people that I can't even put on a convincing show when I'm trying to act like one. I get more confessions by talking nice to people and telling them what they're facing, then asking them to help me help them by telling me THEIR side of what happened so I can explain it to the ADA or AAG. I try to be sympathetic whenever possible because I think most people in that position made some bad decisions that got them backed into a situation that got out of control. Of course, there are some real bad guys out there, but I think they are the truly the 1% out of a hundred. My tolerance starts to wear thin when it comes to people who hurt innocents, ie violent criminals, spousal abusers (male OR female) DUI drivers, thieves, etc. But I'll usually give back whatever I get as far as attitudes are concerned.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 1:49:16 PM EDT
Originally Posted By HKocher:
Originally Posted By cyanide:
I think your observations are correct. Most of the time when the cops stop you it's for a damn good reason.
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Like 10 miles over the limit and such, right. In a area where there are no kids, homes are hundreds of feet of the road, and you are not a threat of harm to anyone, like I said right.
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I don't mean to pick on Cyanide, since I've already called him an A-hole on other threads [;)] but this is a little of what I was talking about. It seems like the guys bitching about cops, usually admit to doing wrong, but they always justify their actions and blame the cop for being an a-hole and busting them. "Sure I was going 15MPH over the speed limit, but nobody was around." "Sure I was smoking crack, but I was doing it in the privacy of my own home." "I drive better when I'm stoned/wasted" "That guy needed killing anyway." This is a bit of an exaggeration, but my point is that if you're doing something that you know is illegal, be prepared to face the consequences wether you think it's fair or not. Seems like the guys who are always complaining that cops act as if they are above the law, also believe THEMSELVES to be above the law.
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When do you drive 25 MPH, come on, that is crawling so is 35, your not really driving a car till your going 45 MPH or more, try it today, drive 25 and say, that is a realistic speed to post.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 1:51:36 PM EDT
Most cops are decent people. Unfortantly the ones that are criminals or take advantage of there job and the power givin them ruin it for the other 98%. I have had run in's with both types of police officers. And the only time I lost my cool was when I was almost side swipped by a cop that ran a red light without any lights or siren. I laid on my horn gave him the bird and flashed my headlights at him while screaming out the window every absenity that I could come up with to describe that POS. That was the only time that I was adversly affected by a cop when I didn't deserve it. Well other then my seatbelt ticket in a parking lot while I was reporting an accident. But I have also been let go for speeding, reckless driving, seat belt, expiered inspection, and in my stupid youth DWI, and running a stop sign in front of the sherrifs dept AHAHAHA.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 2:34:17 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Paul: (snip) If you keep your car plates current, maintain your lights and signals (and use them), and drive within some pretty broad boundarys you'll not get pulled over (snip)
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It also helps to drive a well-maintained late model car. Back when I used to tool around in old junkers, even if they had valid plates, current inspection stickers and paid-up insurance, even if I was a model driver, I would STILL get pulled over... A friend of mine still rides around in old jalopies, same deal, still gets pulled over all the time...[rolleyes]
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 4:10:03 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/13/2003 8:05:18 PM EDT by Happyshooter]
The progression of the professional policeman in the decaying areas: 1. They only socialize with cops on the same track as they, at differing points, due to the 9mm cross they bare and the odd shift work. 2. Everyone I meet on the job is a sobbing victim or scumbag. 3. The other cops kinda suck, too (see #1). 4. All people are scum. 5. I am a person. 6. Alkie, super asshole, or eat their gun.
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 4:39:37 PM EDT
I just wish the good ones wouldn't stick up for and cover for the bad ones.
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Ain't that the everloving truth. Makes the ones that do that seem like their bad too. Get's old
Link Posted: 6/13/2003 4:43:23 PM EDT
Most cops start out trying not to be jerks. Unfortunately the very nature of their job has them dealing with the biggest J-Holes around. So, they invariably fall into the trap of assuming everyone that they come into contact with is. Including us good guys. That applies to most cops, the rest are simply J-Holes from the moment they were born and if it were not for the badge, they would be the jerks getting the cops attention.
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