Across this great nation this weekend we celebrate Labor Day. Perhaps there is no job more vilified nor more dangerous, save those brave soldiers who serve our country overseas, than our men and women in blue. And they are dying in the line of duty at an alarming rate.
In 2016, 135 police officers were killed while doing their job. So far in 2017, there’s been a 30% jump in law enforcement deaths in what appears to be a disturbing trend. For good reason, those who wear the badge to keep law and order are reaching the end of their rope. One such Deputy from Sacramento penned the following letter that is both heartbreaking and truth telling:
What thanks do we get for following this noble calling? There are organizations dedicated specifically to hating us. There are lawyers whose careers are spent suing us. We are called racists, no matter what race we are. We are called pigs, because we dare enforce laws enacted by the very people elected by those calling us pigs. We are called murderers by the families of felons, who given the chance, would have killed us instead. We are portrayed as evil humans by the media and politicians. Every single split-second action of ours is second guessed, under a microscope, for months and years.
We endure this all for a salary that, even in the best of situations, puts one in the middle class, but in most places, leaves one looking for a second job just to make ends meet.
Today, I find myself really pondering why I am still doing this. I know I am not alone.
Tired of Burying Co-Workers
In addition to being killed in the line of duty, some 300 officers take their own lives every year. Many leave the job broken physically and mentally as well. The officer who wrote this letter is a classic case of one of those who has experienced more than enough of the carnage first-hand:
In a few days, I will put on my dress uniform, join thousands of other officers at a church, and bury yet another coworker.
This society as a whole takes us cops for granted. While a news story about a murdered cop gets headlines, to most who see that headline, the thought of the cop’s loss vaporizes as they turn the page or click the next link. While my coworkers and I will never forget his name, most of the society he protected daily has already forgotten it.
This s*** is beyond old.
I’m sick and f****** tired of burying coworkers.
So, this Labor Day as you drive through your community or pass by your local police station, take a moment to silently salute those who have taken an oath to uphold the law in your city or town. And recognize they do so at their own peril.