I Am A Law Enforcement Officer

My name is Alyson StClair, and I am a law enforcement
officer.

I carry pepper spray, handcuffs, a gun, and a badge. I wear
BDU’s and a bulletproof vest; a vest I am just as likely to need off duty as I
am on duty.
As you all know, law enforcement officers are not loved by today’s society.
The recent events that have been shown in the media portrays officers as the bad guys,
and as the people that cannot be trusted. I am not writing this to say that there are no
bad officers, because there are. I have seen them. There are officers that
abuse their power. There are officers that break the law. There are officers
that take advantage. There are officers that only do this job to get a check.
But, I do not have to convince society that there are bad officers. Society
readily accepts that fact. People assume that the majority of officers are bad
because that is what the media focuses their attention on. What society cannot
be convinced of, is that there are more good officers than there are bad
officers. I have seen them. There are officers that know how to talk to people.
There are officers that want to make a difference. There are officers that only
use force when it is absolutely necessary. There are officers that are
passionate about their job. There are officers that do their job correctly; but,
these officers are not shown on the news, and are not given the recognition
that they deserve.

It breaks my heart that ‘a few bad apples’ could ruin the
reputations of other officers. I think it is sad that society has the mentality
that if one officer is bad, we must all be bad. We were taught at a young age
that officers are good people, and that they are your friends. Unfortunately,
not all officers are. And, society has a right to be mad at those officers. In
fact, let me apologize for all of those officers that have abused their power.
I truly am sorry to anyone that was treated with anything less than
professionalism by a law enforcement officer. I know a simple “I’m sorry” does
not fix anything, because society is owed more than an apology. No one should
have to worry about whether or not the officer that they come into contact with
is going to help them or hurt them. However, I am asking that you not let those
bad officers dictate how you perceive us as a whole. I promise you that there are
good officers out there. I work with some of the best.

These officers wake up in the morning knowing that every day
is dangerous for them. They know that they have a target on their backs, and
still choose to go do their jobs. They spend long hours away from their
families to make sure that your family is safe. They get yelled at, called
names, and threatened on a daily basis. Yet, they would turn around and save
the lives of the same people that ridicule them, because that is what they do.
On their worst days, officers are fighting with suspects, being shot at, and
going after individuals that are the faces of evil. Each day an officer is on
duty, could be the day that they do not get to return home to their loved ones.
This job is stressful and dangerous, but officers do it because it is what they
love.

I have personally witnessed someone saying “I hate what cops
stand for.” I have even had people tell me that they could not be friends with
me because they “have never met an officer that wasn’t bad.” And still, when
society is in real danger, they depend upon the officers that they have such a
low opinion of. No one else is going to take an officer’s place in the face of
danger, because no one else has what it takes to risk their lives for complete
strangers. So, next time you decide to
bad-mouth officers or form an opinion based off of little to no facts, just
remember that the good officers do see and hear your comments. It makes us feel
unappreciated and makes us question if we are wasting our time trying to make a
difference in this world.

When I became an officer, I raised my right hand and took an
oath. This oath is what I, and the majority of other officers, live by. And,
what some of us may very well die by. We are all prepared for that. We are
prepared to die protecting and serving those that hate us, because we are good
officers. We are the majority.

On my honor,

I will never betray my badge, my integrity, my character, or the public trust.

I will always have the courage to hold myself and others accountable for our actions.

I will always uphold the constitution, my community, and the agency I serve.
So help me God.