The new episode of Blue bloods was called “Partners” but I felt the saying “Walk a mile in my shoes” reverberated throughout.
Frank Reagan the N.Y.P.D. Commissioner played by the magnificent Tom Selleck was faced with a dilemma. A crazy man was screaming and spitting on bystanders, Lt.McCarthy orders a fellow officer to use a Taser on him. When the man is stunned he falls into a busy street and is hit and killed by an oncoming vehicle. Officer McCarthy is then placed on modified assignment. When ordered by the Mayor to not comment on the incident Frank did as he was ordered, but his heart and mind were with his police officer. The mayor is all political and Frank is a policeman first. He has been in their shoes and knows how hard it is to make those split second decisions that can be life or death decisions also.
Too often in real life the police are treated with scorn and disliked, hated sometimes, even spat upon by those who are being protected by them. They take numerous insults, risk their lives daily and are appreciated by too few.
Those who treat them as enemies should be just that their enemies, those who are criminals, who break the law. Why then do people who are supposedly lawful citizens act like their enemies also?
People can lay blame at a police officers door without a single thought for his reasoning or the situation he was in at the time.. There are many accusations made. The officer is a bigot, racist, unlawful killing, perverting the cause of justice, excessive use of force and many other accusations are faced by policemen everyday. The failure to say the reason for these charges leaves one to think they are not always what they seem.
Yes, there are police who step over the line, some who may be criminals themselves, but one has to believe that most people join the force to help. They want to make a difference and truly always do what is right and at some terrible time may be faced with a decision they must immediately make and because they are human the decision might be wrong. They must be able to defend themselves and their reasoning should be looked at objectively and with reasonable understanding. Remember it is hard to know how a person will act unless you have walked in his shoes
The words that follow were spoken by Commissioner Frank Reagan of Blue Bloods.
“James McCarthy is in critical condition with injuries to his spine, neck and head. It will take several days to assess the long term affects, but the prognosis is not good. On a personal note, I would like to point out here that, police officers like Lieutenant McCarthy make split second decisions, everyday. Make judgement calls as part of their job. Their intention is not to cause harm, their intention is to avoid harm. I believe that was certainly the case with Lieutenant McCarthy. If an officer makes the wrong call, it not only affects citizens of this city, but also affects the officers themselves, in ways that only someone who has walked in their shoes can fully understand. Cops are held to a higher standard of accountability than the rest of the population, as it should be. But never forget, that they are people too. Men and women subject to the same doubts, and regrets, that all of us are. I’m not asking anyone to cut us slack, not at all. But a little recognition for the conditions under which our men and women operate, that’d go a long way.”
Blue Bloods is one of the best shows on TV with a stellar cast and up to date storylines. It can be seen Friday nights on CBS at 10 p.m.
The opinion expressed here is mine alone. No one in my family is or has been a policeman.
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