Dear Paul B,
I am the son of a man who was killed 23 years ago. My Dad was a real “character, and was loved by many, except for my Mother. Mom is gone too, now, but Dad was a heavy drinker. He was recovering from one DUI, and was “on probation,” and doing well, or so we thought. My two sisters and I were not that surprised when we hear of his demise. He was drunk, pulled over, and would not listen to the policeman. He charged the policeman, and was shot in the abdomen. He was “unarmed,” but Dad was a pretty big man. He was sweet when not hammered, but he was quite belligerent when intoxicated. The policeman was black, and I had no problem with that. He was a six year vet, and he tried to talk him down, but Dad was in one of his ill-tempered drunken stupors. Dad bled out that night, as was his bad luck, and he was diabetic as well. There was no “inquest” because of the black officer. I would acted in the same manner if I were the officer. I have two boys, and I tell them to “always listen to the officer.” If you can’t walk, just sit down, and tell them you can’t walk or that you feel sick. You NEVER charge the officer or give him ANY reason to use his gun. What is the mystery to this “guide to live?” Why do people think that an officer is going to allow you, a total stranger, to approach him and NOT be in grave danger? Why don’t we recognize that the policemen are the people risking their lives? If we are pulled over, there is always a reason. I tell my sons to be respectful, listen to the officer, and always be friendly. I have avoided receiving a ticket at least ten times in my life, because the officers are usually friendly people, and they will cut you a break sometimes.
I have spoken to many officers throughout the past five years or so, and every single one does NOT want trouble with us… They want to do their job, stay away from troubles, and arrive home in one piece! My good friend, Elliott C. has run from a few would be attackers carrying tire irons and baseball bats, because they were “out of control,” and wanted to fight. He did NOT WANT TO SHOOT THEM. Elliott says he would never forgive himself. He was called names by others for running from these out of control criminals, but he never shot someone on the job. I am proud of him, and want YOU ALL TO KNOW that you cannot ignore an officer’s directions when you are confronted. The POLICE are in the right. We pay them to protect us. These racial issues are NOT the officers fault much of the time. There should not be any physical confrontation initiated by the citizen. Follow the officers requests. Stay in your car, sit down, allow him to frisk you — it is HIS JOB!!!
Dear Chuck E.
Twenty three years ago, it was a very “different era,” and a more transparent time. A life was a life, and there wasn’t an issue every time an officer had to defend him or herself. It wasn’t so much about white, black, young or old, but “what happened.” In this new-and NOT improved millennium, it seems that there MUST be a deeper issue, certainly a race-related back-drop when a black on white or white on black shooting occurs. I am certain that there is racial bias in our society, but must EVERY single incident be dragged before the courts. I believe that the press will often, by design, blow these incidents out of proportion, and insist that WE respond, and that we MUST do something about these thoughtless crimes….
I believe that policemen and women are performing their very difficult jobs, and we need to cut THEM a very significant break. The streets are quite full of gangs, guns and gunslingers. We can help them with our unbridled support, and by LISTENING to their directions. They are the professionals, not you and me…
— Paul B.
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