Editor Note: Because this student is still several months away from graduation, she’s requested that we publish her submissions anonymously. It’s a sad day when free speech means nothing on college campuses unless it’s anti-police… and when a student is worried that supporting cops will hurt her GPA. We’ve honored her request and will be publishing her stories under the name “Hattie S.” for now.
Yesterday, I found my old Black Lives Matter pin and I threw it in the trash.
My life changed when I met my boyfriend a year and a half ago.
I had a limited understanding of law enforcement and bought into all of the emotionally-charged claims of “police brutality”, though I never directly disrespected or condemned all police officers.
I promoted the BLM cause because I thought it was making a positive statement about general issues of racism in the country. Today, as the BLM movement continues to threaten the livelihood of LEOs and my loved one, suffice to say that I’ve done a complete 180.
From the start of our relationship, my boyfriend gently and non-judgmentally brought my attention to the bias and false information permeating the media which I had once assumed was factual.
The devout liberal in me, somewhat determined to find racist motives behind every use of force, disagreed with some of his points initially. But now, having stayed on 8-hour phone calls during every shift and been as immersed in the profession as I can be without wearing a badge, I would say that I have more experience observing law enforcement than the average hostile college student. And everything I once believed could not be farther from the truth.
When I first met my boyfriend, I thought sure, he seemed good at his job, reasonable and personable, not at all racist or bigoted… maybe he was the exception. But as I listened to the radio and how his department handled potentially problematic calls, heard first-hand stories, and started more critically reading articles and questioning radical liberal indoctrination at school, I realized something.
It isn’t the BLM proponents who are necessarily in the right. They just shout the loudest and appeal to one of the most powerful forces in politics: anger.
There are many reasons I’m so passionate about law enforcement now.
First and foremost is my boyfriend. I love him more than anything, so naturally I’m fiercely defensive of him and his profession. The pain from not being able to gush about him to most people, of having to keep my mouth shut whenever mention of police comes up, of hiding our relationship from my anti-police parents, drives me even further from my old BLM ideology.
I also stopped supporting BLM when I quit letting my emotions dictate everything and began to look at the facts.
I was always a fairly cerebral person, but I didn’t care enough about law enforcement matters before meeting my boyfriend to put more thought than feelings into my opinion. However, now that I read the reports, look at the autopsies, watch the videos, reflect on different incidents, and question articles that omit any potentially condemning details of a case, that has changed.
Most importantly, perhaps, in my “conversion” from BLM proponent to impassioned law enforcement supporter is the pivotal fact that even if I did agree with the basics of BLM philosophy, these people are going about it all wrong.
This is what bothers me, what really gets me going, because I’m a reasonable person. It’s very difficult to be common sense on an issue in today’s political climate, but I do think my points are fairly rational—to the point where a lot of times anti-police people will back down and claim that they “don’t want to argue” when we get into discourse (translation: you’re making too many good points and I don’t want to listen to facts).
I wrote in a previous article that maybe, if anti-law enforcement fanatics didn’t promote genocide of police officers, burn Thin Blue Line flags, despise an entire profession, and threaten hundreds of thousands of hard-working citizens who only want to make the world a little better, we could find a common ground.
Their hostility divides us and their threats only create more tension, anger, and fear—all of which continue to cloud our ability to make rational decisions. We could work together, educate one another, open our minds, but the exact opposite is true.
BLM supporters have further cemented a forced dichotomy of opinions (pro- or anti-police, with no in-between or compromise), and naturally, I choose the side that isn’t proposing we abolish an entire profession.
The fact that I once supported BLM and no longer do, does not mean that I don’t care about the lives of minorities. Every death is tragic, every life lost is grieved, every effort should be made to prevent and avoid use of deadly force.
Switching sides, for me, only means that I don’t support using anger and hostility and over-generalizing and needless threats to make a point. It means that I choose facts over blind emotion, and I don’t want to band together with anyone who promotes murder of any group.
(And guess what? None of us law enforcement supporters have ever proposed the abolition of all minorities or written “KILL MINORITIES” on a piece of artwork or gone to rallies protesting the civilians who assaulted or killed LEOs themselves.)
At the very least, I am proof that rational people on this earth do exist. Don’t assume that every left wing individual is closed off to reason, even if they have a BLM laptop decal.
My co-worker once said that when I first talked about my liberal views, she thought she would have to walk on eggshells around me and I’d be offended by everything. Instead, we had mature conversations focused on logic and problem-solving rather than anger and fear. Every pro-police person has a voice. Use it to speak out, and maybe even help others see a side they hadn’t considered.
There are some days where I want to go back to my hometown and tear down the massive BLM banner hanging on the front of my church. Days when the anti-police sentiment is too much and I can’t handle my peers’ spiteful comments about my boyfriend.
But that would be fighting fire with fire, and we law enforcement supporters are better than that.