Why be a LEO?


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TechBrute
March 14, 2004, 01:44 PM
So the latest bunch of anti-LEO threads have got me wondering... why would anyone want to be a LEO?

Cons:
Low Pay.
High Risk.
When people see you, their stress level goes up.
You're a target for the press, activist groups, criminals, etc.
Lack of support from the community.
Lack of support from your superiors.

Pros:
Get to carry a gun.
With a bit of effort, you can convince yourself that you're making a difference.
Paid administrative leave when you screw up.
"Get out of jail free card" from traffic tickets.
People have to do what you say.
Easy to qualify for the job.


There's obviously something I'm missing from the PRO category. Let's hear why someone would become a cop.

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Kodiak AK
March 14, 2004, 01:55 PM
Well . From speaking with a quite a few oficers in my day I have gotten a lot of different reasons .

1.No body is going to pick on him anymore. (That guy actualy scares me, I don't hink he should be in the general population much less wearing a badge on top of it .)
2.My older brother died from a drug overdose.
3.My little sister was raped.
4.My brother was killed in a gang drive by.
5.My uncle was killed by rasicts.


Also from my personal experiance with speaking to a bunch of different officers , it seems a big city cop is more likely to have a chip on his shoulder and get into police work to be "A big man with a badge and gun."
Small town cops seem to be more likely to do it just because it is something to do for the town .

Face it man . There are good cops , and there are bad cops . Just like any other profesion even lawyers . I can actualy name two good lwyers off the top of my head . The problem is , the bad apples give the rest of the profeshion a bad name .

TheFederalistWeasel
March 14, 2004, 02:10 PM
Your PRO list tells me a lot about you.

If you want to get into LE just to carry a gun your in the wrong profession.

“Convince yourself your making a difference”?

So last week when I made those two felony arrests for $2,500.00 in bogus check, taking a man who made is career out of defrauding banks, is that not making a difference to you? Or what about the guy who put his wife in the hospital with two broke arms and a fractured skull, I hooked him up for aggravated battery, he’s on probation for two other felonies, upon conviction of this one he’s gone!

Is that not making a difference?

Paid admin leave?

Partner you only get put on PAL when you use force in the line of duty where I work, if you f**k up elsewhere it’s without pay or they rip you for damages.

Example you wreck a car and it’s your fault it comes out of your check!

“Get out of jail free card”?

Yea it’s called not breaking the law; I’ve never even been pulled over before, period!

“People have to do what I saw”?

Negative, if I encountered you, a law abiding person and I just told you to do something just for S&G’s you do not have to do it, where the heck did you come up with that?

Too much TV?

“Easy job to qualify for”?

Here is the process I went thru…

I applied for the Police Academy

Was interviewed by the director

Completed a POST background check, which involved a GBI Agent interviewing my family, criminal and drivers history, fingerprints and a polygraph.

Next two POST Instructors interviewed me again

Took assessment written test

Took POST Skills written test

Completed a complete medical physical to include a stress test

Completed a psychological examination, which included SIX tests three written and three computer based and culminated with an interview with a Psychologist.

Then I was cleared to enter the Academy.

13 weeks each week ended with a written exam which I had to pass with 80% or higher plus 4 standalone modules, had to pass 12 practical exams, in all 17 written exams and 12 practical. Had to complete Emergency Vehicle Operations Course and meet the Georgia Firearms minimum standards. Two 80% or higher scores on the GDAC, I topped out at 98.8% and won the shooting trophy, I also won Academic excellence award in my class 97% GPA.

Next I had to apply for the department I currently work for.

Was called for my initial interview with Internal Affairs, yes they do the app screening.

Submitted to YET ANOTHER background check,

Had YET ANOTHER Medical physical/drug test etc…

Had YET ANOTHER psychological examination similar to the one above.

PT Test

Chief and Asst. Chief Interview

Met with Patrol Major

Waited for my letter

Was hired only after I completed all of the above

Then I was subject to 12 weeks of Field Training plus four more schools I had to complete prior to being turned loose on my own.

Yea-easy job to get.

Oh yea all the while I was in the Academy I did not get a paycheck, I sponsored myself,















:fire:

Andrew Rothman
March 14, 2004, 02:21 PM
I think it's fairly simple.

Because cops are the good guys.

Yes, I know: a few aren't. But by and large, most police officers set out to, and do, do good.

They are perceived much like lawyers. People bash them until they need one -- and then they have high expectations for their performance.

In the recent past, and still in some places, joining the cops was a ticket to middle-class comfort for those unsuited, either by education or inclination, for other good-paying jobs.

Today, with the "professionalization" of the police, entrance requirements are increasing. For example, in Minnesota, a cop MUST have a 2-year law enforcement degree or another4-year degree PLUS cop skills training.

And in the recent past, and still in some places, police officers are actually respected by most of the people they encounter.

It's not bad work. Police officers work autonomously, with little direct supervision. They get to exercise a great deal of discretion in their work.

And it's an honorable profession. And some folks still care a great deal about honor.

TechBrute
March 14, 2004, 02:43 PM
Well put.

PATH
March 14, 2004, 02:46 PM
When the the feces hit the rotary twirling blade device it is always the LEO's who get called. Our LEO's fight crime, deliver babies, direct traffic, respond to accidents, keep the roads safe, and perform a whole host of duties you'll never hear or know about.


Why be a LEO? Yes, it is a secure job in terms of a paycheck. More importantly it is one of the greatest services you can render to your community. Do it for the best of reasons. Make a difference!

Remember that you are paid to run into what others run away from on a regular basis. LEO's put their lives on the line everyday they suit up and go out there.

I'd also like to take this oppurtunity to say THANK YOU to all the fine men and women who put it on the line everyday!!! It is a noble calling and profession!

Baba Louie
March 14, 2004, 02:48 PM
Gosh, I thought it was because it feels great to put Bad guys where they belong and to help others in times of need.
And fill out paperwork. Don't want to forget that.
And dealing with drunks and dopers, liars, cheats and thieves. Gotta be a whole lot of fun.

And the Pay.
And New Years Eve off, celebrating with family and friends, then sleeping in the next day.
Great for keeping good relationship with significant others too.

Target complex for everyone to aim at... and I mean everyone.

7 hrs 59 minutes of boredom and 60 seconds of sheer "Why DID I sign up for this?" each shift.

Sometimes I do wonder why these guys and gals want to wear a white hat.

Don't even want to think about where we'd be without them.

Hkmp5sd
March 14, 2004, 02:53 PM
Why be a LEO?
For the same reason some people join the military. They want to contribute something positive to the country and its citizens. Protecting people from enemies, foreign and domestic, isn't something you do for the money, power rush or to get to play with guns.

orangeninja
March 14, 2004, 03:06 PM
Why become a cop? I'll try and answer your questions without being offensive:

Cons:
Low Pay.

Yes, it doesn't pay crap, but in my case the benefits i.e. medical, dental, rule. The rule of thumb is, if you get paid well, your benefits suck, if you have good benefits, your pay sucks.

High Risk.

Only some of the time. I am in a very unique law enforcement job, I don't fight drunks or deal with domestic abuse, but when I go on a "mission" it can get deadly dangerous before you know what happend. So the risk is not TERRIBLE but it's not a 9-5 accounting job either. If you want REAL high risk look into armored truck work. YEESH!!!


When people see you, their stress level goes up.

Not everyone's. I have to admit however, when I was 16 I had a townie cop stick a gun to my head and scare the living ????? out of me. I have never quite gotten over that and yes, when I see one of those bozos my stress level goes up. (and I'm a cop) so usually there is some other reason than you being a cop to stress them out.

You're a target for the press, activist groups, criminals, etc.

Always have been, always will. It's because it is a high profile job. Cops are easily distiguished from the public and everyone wants us to enforce the law on everyone BUT them.

Lack of support from the community.

This is true. This is false. It depends on the person. I have been cussed and hugged. I have been ridiculed publicly and praised publicly to the point of turning red.

Lack of support from your superiors.

This is almost a constant unfortunantly. You really are out there on your own. This is also why some officers become so attached to other officers, its all they have. We share a common affliction. Politics may be blamed I guess.

Pros:
Get to carry a gun.

WHAT!?!?!? Do you know WHY we carry a gun? Self defense. A handgun is a defensive weapon, not an offensive one. A rifle can be either but a handgun is only good at defense. Want an example? Go clear a room with nothing but a handgun when the perp was last seen with a 12ga. You WILL know fear.

With a bit of effort, you can convince yourself that you're making a difference.

Okay, now that is offensive. If I did not do MY particular job you would know it. Your pay check would be worth less than the paper it's printed on. Yet you have never seen or heard from me or my guys, we protect even YOUR interests.

Paid administrative leave when you screw up.

Thats a joke. Paid administrative leave is like being in purgatory. You sit, out of communication with your fellow officers for days or even weeks while they tear apart your every action and word during a situation. You don't know if you will be given an award or fired. You don't know your future and it is completely out of your control. Your family doesn't know what's going to happen. The psycological stress of this cannot be effectively passed on to those who have not seen it first hand. Its NOT a vacation.

"Get out of jail free card" from traffic tickets.

I've been pulled over 1 time in the last 3 years and guess what? I got a ticket. It was for tags. I don't speed, don't drink and drive. I am responsible to my Cheif even while OFF duty. There is no such thing as being OFF the clock in this kind of job. If I were caught smoking weed OFF duty, then I'm fired. If I get caught speeding OFF duty and try to "good 'ol boy" my way out of it and that officer calls my cheif.....I'm in hot water. How many times has YOUR boss been called in the middle of the night because of somthing YOU did on your own time?

People have to do what you say.

Wrong. Unless they have broken the law they can (and frequently do) tell me to go to hell.

Easy to qualify for the job.

Okay.....here we go with the offensive questions again.

1. 2 years of college. Still working on my BS to qualify for advancement. How many years have YOU got? I have an A.S. in Computer Science and one in Criminal Justice. I am working on a BS in C.J. and my eventual goal is an MBA.

2. Experience in security of police work/military REQUIRED. I bounced around in the back of an armored truck to get that experience. The hardest dirtiest most deadly job I"ve ever seen. 3 people were killed during my last 7 months there.

3. Application filled out, don't hear anything for 1 to 2 months in most cases.

4. Interview, initial. The weed out process. Clear that.

5. Interview with the Lt. or Shift Commander and maybe a Sergeant.

6. Interview with the Assistant Cheif and Shift Commander and maybe a Sergeant. You know, the "hot seat".

7. Background and reference check of your life. Fingerprints, heck, they even check your credit. Did you know you can't be a cop in some places with bad credit?

8. Physical.

9. Drug screen.

10. Psyc. Test and Psyc. Interview. I have seen perfectly normal people fail this.

11. Written test. I.E. your writing and grammerical skills. Basic math and problem solving etc.

12. Get hired about a month or two later. Total time in process? 2 to 4 months.

13. Begin training. Sent off to specialized training area for a week of introductory academic training followed by a test. You don't pass, you're fired.

14. Return back and begin training with firearms etc. Total time spent training? About 10 to 11 weeks. Then you have to complete an supplamental training twice a year. These average 3 days long.

15. You are sworn in. Congrats....now you are assigned to a field Off. you pass that, viola' you're a cop.

Piece of cake, like working at Target.:scrutiny:

One other thing:

"It's not bad work. Police officers work autonomously, with little direct supervision. They get to exercise a great deal of discretion in their work."

The above statement is no longer true in most cases. The cars are attached with cameras and GPS locators. You get out of your beat or somthing goes down....you get gigged. They know where you are and when and why. If you take to long on a stop, they review the tapes. In my particular field, I work along with my supervisor day to day. I practically have to sit in his lap. So that is not necassarily true.:rolleyes:

Country Boy
March 14, 2004, 03:12 PM
I'm in the final stages of the selection process for a Highway Patrol Trooper in both ND and SD. Allow me to chime in as somebody who wants to get into law enforcement.

I want to be the one that is actually making a difference, not just sitting around griping about how I wish it could be better. I want to be one of the frontline troops, one of those who stand up for and enforce what is right. I want to be the one that gets the call to deal with those things that go bump in the night, so that everyone else can sleep peacefully.

I like knowing that what I do makes a difference. That's why I initially got into teaching, and that's why I'm changing careers to law enforcement. Counting beans and pushing paper wouldn't satisfy my sense of duty. If I can make my slice of the world a little better, I sleep well at night. There are going to be challenges and struggles, but there are challenges and struggles in anything worth doing.

If you want to know why someone would go into law enforcement, look at the lyrics from the song Toby Keith sings called American Soldier. It will give you a pretty close idea.


I'm just trying to be a father
Raise a daughter and a son
Be a lover to their mother
Everything to everyone
Up and at 'em, bright and early
I'm all business in my suit
Yeah, I'm dressed up for success
From my head down to my boots

I don't do it for the money
There's bills that I can't pay
I don't do it for the glory
I just do it anyway
Providing for our future's my responsibility
Yeah I'm real good under pressure
Being all that I can be

And I can't call in sick on Mondays
when the weekends been too strong
I just work straight through the holidays
And sometimes all night long
You can bet that I stand ready when the wolf growls at the door
Hey, I'm solid, hey I'm steady, hey, I'm true down to the core

And I will always do my duty no matter what the price
I've counted up the cost, I know the sacrifice
Oh, and I don't want to die for you
but if dyin's asked of me
I'll bare that cross with honor
'cause freedom don't come free

I'm an American soldier, an American
beside my brothers and my sisters I will proudly take a stand
when liberty's in jeopardy I will always do what's right
I'm out here on the front line
Sleep in peace tonight
American soldier, I'm an American soldier

Yeah, an American soldier, an American
beside my brothers and my sisters I will proudly take a stand
when liberty's in jeopardy I will always do what's right
I'm out here on the front line
So Sleep in peace tonight
American soldier, I'm an American
An American, an American soldier

thefitzvh
March 14, 2004, 03:19 PM
[puts flame retardant suit on...]


This is why I, as a member of the military, no longer have a problem with LEOS referring to everyone else as "Civilians."

The urban battleground they deal with is ruthless.

Sure, there's some bad cops, but by and large they're a good group of people. In my experiences with them, I can say there were a few times I was damn glad they were around.

James

Kodiak AK
March 14, 2004, 03:26 PM
alduro Lack of support from your superiors. This is almost a constant unfortunantly. You really are out there on your own. This is also why some officers become so attached to other officers, its all they have. We share a common affliction. Politics may be blamed I guess.
You need to come to Kodiak and work for Kami.
I love this guy , he is the best Cheif we have had since I have been here .I had a lot of divorce problems a few years back , and my ex tried to play the abuse card to get custody of our daughter . One day during visitation she called the cops and had them come get my daughter by lieing to him about haveing custody from a dvro.
Well he did his job and came to get our daughter ,but both I and my wife knew the DVRO was canceled . Now I fully admit that when he took my daughter I blew my top and I cussed him out something fierce . He said to come by his office in the morning so I did .
In the morning He said flat out " One of our officers mis filed paper work .You where correct .I don't care for the way the discusion went yesterday , but the fact that a mistake was made reflects badly on our department , and I take full responsabilty for this situation."He than advised me that if I contact my lawyer he will suply him with all of the releveant material to begin legal action.And that he can not discuss it any more with me .
I am a man of many things , but I truly suport an honorable man . More so when that man has the opurtunity to tell me to get bent and arrest me for what I said to him the day before .I explained to him that I didn't need to take any legal action bsed on the fact that he A. Apologised for a mistake . And B.Was willing to take full responsabilty for it . I asked him if he could provide a statment to the court concerning the details of the incident and he agreed . The affidavite of the cheif of police swearing my wife had lied to the police realy helped me in the divorce . I still lost my daughter , and a lot of other stuff , but it would have been much worse with out that statement.
At that point in my life due to recent events I was VERY anti LE.It is amazing what a difference ONE honorable man can make in someones life . Like I said in a post earlier . There are good cops and bad cops . I thank each and every one of you good cops for what you do . I hope every bad cop gets burned because you are a disgrace to your profesion.

Ala Dan
March 14, 2004, 03:28 PM
Self esteem, with total satisfaction! :cool: Been there
and done that, my friend. Tell a seven year old child
whose dreams are being a policeman/policewoman
on the beat that they really don't want to be known
as a "COP"! At least thats the age whereas I made
up my mind; and I don't think "come hell or high
water" could have changed it? You can learn a lot
about duty, honor, and courage from this type of
profession. In 20+ years as a LEO, I must say that
most of the time it was enjoyable duty.

After all, not all of us go around raming toilet brush
handles up the rear ends of suspects!

Best Wishes,
Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member

orangeninja
March 14, 2004, 03:30 PM
Sorry about your loss Kodiak......I hate divorces. They tend to be nasty, personal and drag everyone around them into the muck. I didn't mean to imply that my Chief was not supportive, just the system and occasionally the shift commander.:D

Kodiak AK
March 14, 2004, 03:39 PM
alduro
Divorce does suck .What realy blows is it is almost automatic that the man will be acused of abuse whiether or not there is any basis for it right off the bat .Honestly I think it may have made me a better man . I am in a truely loveing relationship now and have two beutifull kids with her that I am a devoted father to.That old saying about that which doesn't kill you rings true from time to time .

I just thought it would be good to put a posative Le remark up on a post that is sure to go south .

4v50 Gary
March 14, 2004, 03:50 PM
I think the pros are very misconstrued.

Easy to qualify for the job - Wrong. Out of about 100 applicants, maybe 5 will be accepted. Of those 5 offered a position, not all will accept so now you're down to 3-4. Of those 3 to 4, one may not make it through the Academy or FTO program.

Get out of Jail Free - Not really and you'll find former LEO behind bars (and we're not talking serving or imbibing either).

People have to do what you say - well, what you say better be lawful or it's lawsuit city or a trip to I.A. with a lot of 'splain'n to do. Wearing a badge doesn't make you better than the citizens you're suppose to protect nor does it allow you to bully them around. You act on behalf of society and not on personal whims or desire.

Paid Administrative Leave when you screw up - along with a lot of stress that accompanies it. Any cop will pass on it.

Want a real good pro? You sometimes make a difference. Return a lost kid to her the mother and seeing the joy on her face to be reunited with her child is something to be remembered.

El Tejon
March 14, 2004, 04:06 PM
I did it for the chicks.:D

Hkmp5sd
March 14, 2004, 04:25 PM
for the chicks.
Was it successful? :)

TechBrute
March 14, 2004, 04:29 PM
Ouch. :D

Erik
March 14, 2004, 05:31 PM
Why I wanted to be a LEO:

I buy into notions of duty, honor, responsibilty, sacrifice for the greater good, and other such themes.


Pros:

A great deal of satisfaction, both personally and professionally, from serving my nation as an enforcer of our laws.

The work is frequently interesting.

I enjoy catching bad guys.

The thanks of many in society. Nearly every day someone goes out of their way to let me know, as it happens. Great feedback.

The way children respond to my mere presence. Kids are great.

Reasonable opportunities fro advancement.

Relatively good bennies and pay.

Cons:

Long, non-traditional work schedual which frequently interfers with activities involving family and friends.

Sometimes it is hard to remember the satisfaction part.

The uneasy stares I frequently get when I'm in uniform, regardless of what I'm doing at that moment.

Negative generalizations and stereotypes about LEOs.

The realization that despite one's best efforts you cannot accomplish everything you'd like to. Which translates into something deeper than mere matters of productivity.

Folks who never give me the benefit of the doubt, while always giving the bad guy one.

Erik
March 14, 2004, 05:43 PM
Answer an interview question of why you want to be a LEO with a comment about getting to carry guns, driving fast, or cool gadgets on your belt, or anything that sounds vaguely like a power trip and you'll be lucky to have the courtesy of a follow up question. You certainly will not be deemed a "best candidate," if even a viable one.

:uhoh:

I know of nobody in law enforcement who would list carrying guns as a reason they joined up or as a reason they are staying in. Sure, there are many who enjoy firearms. There are many folks who aren't in law enforcement who enjoy them too. Correlations? Nope.

Easy to qualify? Way off, as already explained. Mileage certainly varies with location, populace, opportunities, etc.

It is true that LEOs frequently receive warnings from their peers regarding traffic offenses. Most folks do. And no, it is not a sure thing. I know fellow LEOs who have received tickets. I always question their demeanor, much like that of anyone else who failed to get a warning.

I have never even heard of someone listing paid leave in instances of disciplinary actions as a perk before. Telling....

:scrutiny:

Black Snowman
March 14, 2004, 06:11 PM
I've thought about becoming a LEO for the following reasons both of which fall under "making a differance":
1) Justice begins with enforcement. As a LEO I would choose what crimes go before the courts and contribute to a more just legal system.
2) Credibility contributing to a possible political career.

Things that are in no way a "pro" from the "pro" list:
"Get to carry a gun." I can do that whenever I want. Not nessisarily legally but morally. As an LEO I'd sudenly be in such a dangerous position that I NEEDED to care a firearm.

"People have to do what you say." People will do whatever they want to do, as a LEO you just have to create consequences for them. Not a fun proposition. See previous "Pro".

"'Get out of jail free card' from traffic tickets." Not always the case. I've heard stories of LEO's getting in serious crap-ola for off duty habits reflecting badly on the department. Something like a DWI can not only get your liscence revoked but fired as well.

El Tejon
March 14, 2004, 07:06 PM
Hk, a gentleman never says.:D But, yeah, a few times it was a "contributing factor" but not controlling.;)

Tech, I did it for the experience. Helped me quite a bit here in the "real world.":)

MountainPeak
March 14, 2004, 07:09 PM
To answer your question. It is an honorable profession. Added-I'm not a LEO.

BlkHawk73
March 14, 2004, 07:22 PM
Origianlly, I had intended on become a LEO. I earned my degree in the classrooms took my tests and attended the academy (I paid for it myself) Actually went for two depts openings. Made it to the top 10 before getting passed on. (They did make a good choice of the new guy) Initailly, I wanted to get into the carrer because I like where I'm from and actually wanted to be a part of the whole community. Also wanted to do my part to make it a better city. I remember one of my teachers saying it is 99% bordom and 1% terror and there's no glamorous adventures. Wearing a gun wasn't a factoer and anyone that wants the job just for that shouldn't wear the badge. When marriage became parenthood, my focus changed. time with my family far outweighed the hours of a LEO. I still have the utmost respect for those behind the badge. All to often they are the target of gripes, complaints and negative remarks, but when all else fails, that's who people call.

mountainclmbr
March 14, 2004, 09:09 PM
Being a LEO has to be a difficult job. I have known several. The good ones were truly honerable people. The bad ones were sometimes very, very bad. I only knew one moderately bad LEO that got convicted (Breaking and entering, larceny, while on duty with his partner, multiple counts) and sent to prison. The worst lost his job and instantly got a job in the next town (KKK member, shooting at a 10 y.o. black child after he crossed the road on a bycycle, not at an intersection and ran when the COP car pulled up behind him in a field with lights and siren). COPS usually get a pass though. I have worked before with the FBI (not an agent myself) and all the cases I knew about seemed very valid and some were very high profile. I am afraid that local COPS, due to local politicians, are trending toward revenue collection for the benefit of their local governments more than they are protectors of citizens individual rights to life, safety and property.

Just like everyone, many good, some bad. Each should be treated with respect until they prove they don't deserve it. Say thank you to the good ones. Ignore the bad ones if you can, God will sort out the facts.

WonderNine
March 14, 2004, 09:19 PM
So the latest bunch of anti-LEO threads have got me wondering... why would anyone want to be a LEO?

Get to carry a gun and it's an easy job with good pay. (around here anyways).

I could never be one though as I don't believe in the War on Some Drugs or alot of the other things they do.

12-34hom
March 14, 2004, 09:19 PM
LEO is an honorable profession - Some folks still care a great deal about honor.

That pretty much sums it up for me.

12-34hom.

bokchoi
March 15, 2004, 12:44 AM
I've been planning to join the local Police service for the past year now.

At the beginning, it was spawned by an unhealthy interest in firearms. I thought having a nice big belt full of toys would be really cool, like being Batman, fighter of crime.

Then I met some constables, and then my whole world went upside down.

For the first time, I learned who and what good men were, and what they were made out of.


It's more than being a good shot.

It's more than being tough.

It's even more than being honorable and having integrity.


I still can't say what it is I see in all these people who chose to become constables, but I'm sure it's there. And they are filling some really big shoes.

I can only pray that I will be able to do the same.

jsalcedo
March 15, 2004, 03:58 AM
I used to want to be a police officer. I was ultra conservative, gung ho, idealistic and had a strong sense of right and wrong.

Then I saw what the job can do to some folks and figured it might be in my best interest to stay a civilian.

There are some good cops out there that care and will go out of their way to help. I thank them.

With all the requirements and drawbacks of police work I am surprised departments can find idealistic educated youth with clean backrounds to fill the positions

WonderNine
March 15, 2004, 04:27 AM
Then I saw what the job can do to some folks and figured it might be in my best interest to stay a civilian.

Cops are civilians.

FedDC
March 15, 2004, 06:41 AM
I'm not a civilian, I'm a Fed;)

jsalcedo
March 15, 2004, 10:43 AM
Cops are civilians.

That was my point. ;)

Bopleo
March 15, 2004, 12:37 PM
The uniforms look cool and the pay is ok.
Besides you get to beat people up now and then or get you ass kicked, either way its a great job.

Pride and professionalism is why i am an LEO, i also need a way to pay the bills.

Kodiak AK
March 15, 2004, 02:19 PM
Bopleo
I can do all that being abouncer and be a lot safer while doing too.
You ever heard of "Bouncer Killer " bullets?
:o

Fed168
March 15, 2004, 11:18 PM
I really cannot answer that question without sounding textbookish, but my answer falls in line with duty, sevice, and something I've always wanted to do.

ahenry
March 16, 2004, 01:22 AM
That is a really interesting list of pro’s and con’s you have TechBrute. I’d say every single one of your pro’s is either wrong or not really much of a reason for joining law enforcement. I’ll try to explain why and then try to explain why I think people pick a career in law enforcement.

* Law Enforcement Officers don’t “get” to carry a gun, they have to carry a gun. Strapping on a gun belt every day before you go to work to “fight crime” is shockingly different then putting a gun on your waist each day for your own personal self-defense needs. In the latter a gun is needed to deal with bad luck or poor choices, a fairly low likelihood of need. In the former the gun is needed because you are required to spend your workday dealing with others poor life choices, a fairly high likelihood of need.

* Deciding if law enforcement actually “makes a difference” or not is hard to do. It is virtually impossible to quantify any sort of deterrence effect, and the court system really has the final say in keeping a criminal out of society. Of course, that same court system would be pretty ineffective without a “strong arm of the law” at work. In the end I think it is safe to say that most people believe America would be a far worse place without a law enforcement presence. I know I believe that.

* Paid administrative leave is usually used to avoid firing an individual while a matter is still under investigation. Of course some things are actually punished with “days on the beach” but my understanding is that it is usually for policy type violations, not actual criminal violations. You know, an avoidable accident in a government vehicle or something similar. Of course every agency has it’s own policy so it might be different where you are…

* I would agree that LEO’s generally cut other LEO’s a break when it comes to traffic tickets. Then again, most law enforcement around where I live cut concealed handgun license holders a break too…and firemen…and paramedics…Of course, joining law enforcement just so you can get out of a couple of traffic tickets is a pretty stupid reason.

* In a “situation” an officer certainly does have the power to “make people do what he says” but then that isn’t so much an advantage as it is a burden. Do you have any idea why an officer has to control a “situation”? The majority of the time an officer is reacting to something an individual does, and trying to react to a pistol shot coming from the gun hidden in the individuals front pocket is pretty tough to do. Asking (or from your perspective “making”) that same individual keep his hands out of his pockets is a much easier and safer option that, when done properly, doesn’t hurt anybody.

* I certainly can’t speak for all law enforcement agencies, but when I joined there were over ninety thousand applicants, less than a thousand were actually hired and made it through all of the training. I’d figure that’s a good bit more stringent set of qualifications than most of the other jobs out there.

Now after all of that, I’ll tell you why I think people pick a career in law enforcement; and that is to help their fellow man. Most every person in law enforcement saw some sort of a problem in either American, their state, their city or some other local area and felt that law enforcement was the best way they personally could do something about it. Some people see one problem while other people see a different set of problems, which is why there is such a vast array of law enforcement organizations. However, in the end law enforcement officers are doing what they can to help their community fix a problem. And no amount of “con’s” can ever outweigh the one “pro” of every workday personally doing something to help fix that particular problem. You might not see any problems, or at least you might not see how law enforcement does anything to help fix those problems. In my book though, I’m pretty dang glad there are those that do see a problem and do feel the responsibility of fixing it.

Logan5
March 16, 2004, 03:39 AM
Not being a LEO, I couldn't tell you, but being fond of the rule of law, it's clear to me that someone has to do it.

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