Last night, a police officer shot a man who tried to shoplift an AR-15 assault rifle from a local sporting store. Naturally, people sitting comfortably on living room couches and workplace desk chairs everywhere are giving their opinions on the matter. Over the past few weeks, I’ve seen many, many comments condemning police officers for the things they’ve done while in the line of duty and I can’t help but think how hypocritical this criticism is.
You see, unlike myself, my husband, and most likely you, these officers have jobs that put them in the line of danger EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. Unlike you and I, sitting on our couches or in our comfy office chairs at our 9-5 desk jobs, these men and women are RISKING. THEIR. LIVES. to protect those around them for a meager $50,000 per year. Unlike you and I, whose major stress at work might be a grumpy coworker or demanding boss, cops deal every single day with criminals. Criminals who, in many cases, wouldn’t hesitate to kill a cop or a civilian nearby. These men and women are forced to make split-second decisions about situations that could potentially leave their wives and husbands without a spouse, their children without mothers and fathers. Do you really mean to say that police officers should stand around talking when faced with a criminal who is holding a gun?
Please tell me, those of you who have posted this ridiculous meme, what would you, sitting safely at your couch, your desk, your kitchen table, advise the officer, who faces the possibility of being killed every single day, to do when confronted with a suspect who pulls a gun, or something that looks very much like a gun? See, it’s real easy for me to sit in comfort, accusing officers of using “excessive” force when I’ve never been in a deadly situation in my whole life. It’s real easy for me to condemn a cop for shooting someone holding a toy gun when I’ve never physically confronted the evil in the world or faced a hostile criminal.
Perhaps we should remember that before we go passing judgement on the men and women who risk their lives every day so that we can go to our safe, comfy desk jobs.