During the month of December, 2014, I had a plan in place. I was enrolled in a program which helped with financial aid to go back to college and finish my degree. My appointment was on January 15th. Life had never been better.
January 12th of 2015, I was in a severe car accident, which resulted in the temporary loss of my car. As of today, my car is STILL in the repair shop. Yes, that’s correct… One hundred and seven days without a vehicle, and counting. Over the course of those 107 days, my life has been chaotic, and that’s putting it mildly. From deaths in the family, to friends giving birth, new doctors, surgeons, lawyers, lawsuits, settlements, school, college, concerns for my son’s health, the ups and downs of a typical relationship… In a nut shell, my life has been anything BUT quiet.
The one thing that has remained consistent over the course of these 107 days, is the nightly news. Every night, there is at least one breaking news story aimed at defaming a police department, be it local or across the nation. Having gone to college for criminal justice, I hope you can understand that this literally makes me sick. Yes, writing is ONE passion of mine, but criminal justice has always been in the forefront. It disgusts me to hear such things about our police officers, but what’s worse is that sometimes these nasty things are true.
A few days ago, my local police department was being slammed on social media for being a bunch of savage murderers with a license to kill. What happened was, a herd of bison escaped from a farm a few counties away. Those bison made their way from the farm, through a couple of counties, across the Hudson river, into our county. The local and state police tracked the herd for 8 hours, making sure the public was safe. These were wild bison, charging anyone or anything that got close to them. Once the afternoon had begun, and the school was beginning to dismiss students, it was ultimately decided that the bison were a threat to public safety. They were shot and killed. Well, OMG! Those bastards!! Why couldn’t they coax a herd of 15 wild bison onto a heavy duty trailer and haul them to safety? I’m sure if they knew there were cookies involved, these wild, angry, 1,100lb beasts would’ve fully complied. Anyway… as I was scrolling through my newsfeed on Facebook, I couldn’t believe the names our officers were being called. Instead of a “Thanks for keeping us all safe” there were way too many UNEDUCATED people criticizing the same organization that keeps them safe, day after day. Now, had the police not acted when they did, the wild bison would have eventually killed a citizen and then they’d be bashed for NOT killing the animals right from the start. Police officers have an extremely difficult job to do. Add to that, the fact that they have to please numerous different opinionated people. I don’t envy police officers today… They definitely don’t have it easy.
While attending community college, I learned that despite my good intentions (and those of every other individual interested in law enforcement), our criminal justice system is far too corrupt. It’s been said that one person can make all the difference. I don’t believe that’s true in this case. My opinion? It has to be a collaborate, nationwide effort involving colleges, police departments, correctional facilities, counselors, court systems and congress to name just a few. BUT… this is where I come in. Someone has to get the ball rolling, correct? Even if I’m not a part of the reconstruction process, I can certainly get the right people involved who can get things off the ground. We have to start somewhere!! Education has to be a priority. If Obama can mandate health insurance (with good intentions of course) why not mandate education? Perhaps if that were the case, we wouldn’t have a city like Baltimore burning itself to the ground. What exactly are they going to gain by destroying their city and killing off their police department? Well, they haven’t thought that far ahead because they aren’t educated to do so!! They’re angry, and maybe rightly so, but what the hell is all of this violence going to get them? And although I haven’t read or heard the quote directly (yet), it certainly doesn’t help to have a mayor encouraging such ignorant, barbaric behavior!
I don’t know all the details/facts pertaining to Baltimore, but… did the officer(s) know that there was a history of mental illness, or health conditions? Probably not. So, let’s start by educating officers AND the general public. Once that’s established, why not actually TRY to reform and rehabilitate prisoners? Why in this day and age is it so difficult to weed out the good from the bad? Well, because everyone has rights. If someone feels their rights have been violated, they file a lawsuit, clogging up our judicial systems even further.
I think Obama was absolutely right about one thing… It’s time for some serious change in this great nation. Now we just have to start making those changes. Who’s game?
Peace, love and happiness ALWAYS,