Last updated on October 13th, 2023 at 08:12 pmReading Time: 3 minutes
Now that I have reached my Three Score Years and Ten, and more than 50 years since I joined the Metropolitan Police Force, I find that some things really get under my skin and vex me. My current beef is that a certain section of society thinks that All Coppers Are………..but they are not.
We are all aware of a few recent serious cases of wrongdoing by Police Officers. I am not going to give them the publicity of naming them, but we all know who they are. For the avoidance of doubt I do not seek to defend them, or justify their activities, in any way. Despicable behaviour.
It’s entirely understandable that you may think they are Bastards, and I probably wouldn’t argue with you, but they are not all Bastards. A number of ‘Ladies of Twitter’ have decided that most, if not all, male Police Officers are misogynists, without knowing very much about the individuals at all. Yet if you label them is misandrists all hell lets loose. In the main they’re trouble-makers, seeking attention because they’ve got a new book to sell, or their poor, hard doneby boyfriend is in prison. All you have to do is disagree with them and you’re branded. Most unfair, and stifles open debate.
I’m neither seeking, nor expecting, any sympathy, I know exactly where that is to be found. What I’m asking is for you to put yourself in the position of PC John Smith. He isn’t perfect, very few of us are, but he’s had a really shit day. He’s been sent to deal with a person under a train. When he arrives, he’s the first and only officer on scene at that time.
More help arrives, as do the Ambulance Service. It very quickly becomes obvious that the person is dead, killed probably instantaneously by the impact of the train. It is also immediately apparent that the body is no longer in one piece.
As he goes about his business PC John Smith suddenly realises that the dead body in front of him was friend and colleague PC Jimmy Green.
I would ask you to put yourself in John Smith’s place, and just reflect how you would feel if that was you.
I ask you to think, if that were you, how you would feel once you’d finished dealing with the death of Jimmy Green and had to go back to dealing with all the other demands on your time that Policing makes.
I’m certainly not suggesting that this is a daily, or even common, occurrence, but it has happened.
There are round about 150,000 Police Officers in England and Wales at the moment, and a huge percentage of them will have dealt with death, serious injury and disfigurements on multiple occasions. I probably dealt with literally hundreds in my time, ranging from Cot Deaths to traumatic death in a Car Crash, or the victim of a murder. The vast majority, however, were Natural Causes or Suicide, but they all involve dead bodies.
Either they will have dealt with it at the scene, or they would be involved in informing Mum that her Son/Daughter wouldn’t be coming home. A task that is not only very stressful, but must be conducted with absolute sympathy and compassion.
It certainly isn’t a daily occurrence but it’s not unknown for an officer to attend the scene of a Road Traffic Collision only to find that one of the drivers is their wife/husband/partner.
I ask you two questions; 1) could you deal with that, and 2) How would you feel after that? Could you still deal with members of the public in a professional way, or might your normally high standards slip for the rest of the day, or just a few hours.
Members of the Public, in the main, don’t like to feel that have been stereotyped but it seems that many, not all, are quite happy to stereotype Police Officers.
I have no problem with anybody who has had a negative encounter with a Police Officer and decides to report it as a Complaint. That is your right, and is perfectly acceptable. I do have a huge problem with anybody who follows the ACAB mantra, or anybody who claims somebody is a misogynist seemingly based on nothing more than daring to hold a different opinion.
It does not make the other 149,999 Bastards. All Coppers Are……..Not