By Kenneth Gross (Retired New Jersey State Police Sgt.)
An open letter to President Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder, Mayor Bill deBlasio and Rev. Al Sharpton in regards to “Retraining Law Officers”:
To President Obama, NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, and former Attorney General Eric Holder
Contrary to what you gentlemen might believe, my “training” to become a Law Enforcement Officer started long before the police academy. It started long before I even thought of becoming a police officer.
You see, gentlemen, my “training” started shortly after I was born and it started right in my own home.
My parents, my family, my relatives, my siblings, my friends’ parents, my neighbors, my church, my school, my teachers, my athletic coaches all played a part in my “training.”
From a very early age I was “training” to be respectful, compassionate, understanding, strong, determined, courageous, faithful and, above all, responsible for my own actions.
What I learned in the academy is that every recruit/cadet had about the same “training” that I had. We all arrived with the same morals and the same goals. We all wanted to Protect & Serve. What didn’t matter was skin color, gender, ethnicity or religion.
Throughout the academy, the previously mentioned attributes were discussed at length, but “training” also included how to deal with people who did not have the same level of “training” that we had come to understand as normal behavior.
Unfortunately our society has created a gap in “training” for the less fortunate and the self-entitled. Politicians have promised CHANGE time and again only to keep dumping mounds of cash on the situation and never addressing the real issue.
The less fortunate do not need handouts — they need jobs. They need to feel a sense of purpose and self-satisfaction from accomplishments. They lack of self worth becomes an excuse for accepting criminal behavior as a way of life. If I can’t earn what I want, I might as well take what I can get. If I’m not accepted by society, maybe I can be accepted by a gang.
Teach a man to fish.
Welfare was not intended to raise 4-5 generations. It was meant to assist those who’ve fallen on hard times. With the lack of jobs and no promise of a future, crime becomes an acceptable behavior.
Police officers are the Thin Blue Line between a civilized society and total anarchy. The police did not create this problem. The police did not make the laws. The police did not create criminals.
You four gentlemen have made numerous statements blaming the police and their “training.” We need to think about your words in recent speeces and statements.
Less than 1% of all police officers are involved in any miscondict (and this does not mean criminal misconduct), yet you gentlemen have made more than your share of statements inferring that the police are the MAIN PROBLEM.
When you four gentlemen make statements that ALL police need “RETRAINING,” you do exactly what you accuse the police of doing.
Mr President and Mr. deBlasio, there are SOME politicans who are corrupt. Does this mean that YOU are corrupt? Mr. Holder, SOME lawyers are criminals and drug addicts. Does this mean YOU are a drug dealer or abuser? Rev. Sharpton, some men hide behind God to molest children — are YOU a pedophile?
Yet all four of you have lumped ALL policemen and policewomen as racists in need of “training.” What’s even worse is that you four have done this after two recent events and before ALL THE FACTS were known.
Both instances, while tragic, had zero evidence of any racist behavior on the part of law enforcement. Yet all four of you believe ALL police need “training.”
The four of you have failed at your mission. It started by making inflammatory remarks against police prior to hearing the evidence. It continued by all four of you failing to denounce criminal behavior at so-called “peaceful protest.”
And you have failed by not standing behind the law of the land when you decided that two grand juries were wrong — the same laws that helped you all get the positions you hold today.
The four of you might need some “training.” You might need to be reminded that your jobs are to bring us all together on the RIGHT side of the law.
This will only be accomplished when gentlemen such as yourselves stop blaming the police and start teaching men to fish rather than giving them a fish.