Wednesday, December 10, 2014

What's a Cop to Do?

I think there are a lot of good people who have chosen to be LEOs.  I suspect that many of them turn into unfortunate people they wouldn't have wanted to become if they knew beforehand.  Some of the unfortunate realize they have changed and they work to figure out what to do about it.  Others are left unaware of the damage and they suffer without knowing why.  I'd like to see everyone who cared enough to read this post work on helping these unfortunate and unaware LEOs figure out that they've changed so that they can start working on what to do about it.

I imagine that some LEOs can honestly say that the job hasn't changed them into someone they didn't want to be, though I worry that this is a relatively small group.  I also worry that some of them always wanted to be bullies with a license to kill - what many call "bad cops."

What troubles me most is that the job does seem to damage the good in those who take it.  This is, of course, a natural side-effect of being paid to enforce stupid laws.  The job is also generally accepted by the public as necessary.  The tiny portion of human beings who view others as animals to be used (instead of fellow humans) rely quite heavily on the brutality sometimes necessary to make other humans behave however they want them to behave.  Is there any way we can help LEOs watch out for such psychopaths and avoid helping them achieve their goals?

For example, how do we get police officers to respect the natural rights of growers of marijuana, prostitutes, people not wearing seat-belts, speeding, selling loosies, driving without a license plate (or a license), selling cocaine, jay-walking, or feeding the homeless, and instead concentrate their efforts against thieves, rapists, and murderers?  At least until tax revenue dries up so much that many government managers will be relieved to reduce the size of their enforcement troops, this is the only way we can find peace.

A friend of mine quit his LEO job, and his department had a policy of trying to get compliance without violating natural rights.  That is a step in the right direction.  However, his department still required the violence if compliance was impossible without it, and so it was too few steps in the right direction, and my friend quit.  I worry that his position was taken by a lower quality individual, and that is my dilemma when seeking to help LEOs deal with the contention between being a good person and being a good cop.  As far as I know, many government employees of the former USSR simply dragged their feet at work and eventually stopped bothering to show up, melting into the private sector to find honest work.  Does that seem like a viable path for current LEOs?

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