Does your agency have a Suggestion Box in the lobby, or perhaps online? Do they solicit input from the public? Of course the goal is to discover methods to improve performance. But I have a few suggestions that would improve police moral based upon the absurdity of a select few we serve.
In a perfect world, justice would be distributed and all good citizens would consistently agree on the appropriate consequences for people behaving badly. Since we do not live in a perfect world, we have no such penalty. But it doesn’t mean we can’t dream.
In my vision, I have developed consequences for people you will recognize if you work in law enforcement. We have dealt with them, and in some cases been required to write policies to counter their bizarre behavior. These are people who lack self-awareness and behave like fools.
My Suggestion Box contains items that will hopefully bring humor to your day, but are unlikely to become reality any time soon!
- Anyone who spits on a police officer is sentenced to cleaning toilets and picking up dog feces in the city park.
- Anyone who vomits, urinates, or craps in a police unit due to drug or alcohol ingestion serves part of his or her sentence alongside the spitters.
- A person who leaves graffiti in the police lobby while waiting to be served receives a temporary tattoo that says, “I support the police” and is required to wear it for one month.
- A person who kicks out the window in a police unit is required to serve time at the local dojo serving as a guinea pig for the martial arts instructor demonstrating moves for students.
- A criminal defendant who gets bitten by a police K9 after several warnings to surrender is required to wear bandages that say, “I’m stupid” (à laBill Engvall shtick) until the wounds heal.
- Anyone who claims to pay our salary is required to do so on the spot. The contribution can be deducted from their taxes—assuming they pay any.
- Publicize video recordings of combative suspects getting tased as PSA spots during National Night Out.
- Anyone charged with interfering or resisting arrest during National Police Weekis subject to twice the penalty upon conviction—similar to a traffic violation in a construction zone.
- A person who intentionally wads a roll of toilet paper in the commode in their cell is required to use an article of personal clothing next time they need TP.
- A citizen who insists a children’s birthday party is disturbing the peace at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday afternoon should be required to clean up when the kid’s party is over.
- Any adult who victimizes a child or the elderly receives a sentencing enhancement of “special class.” The instructors of this form of education are the biggest, baddest, and rudest individuals ever to wear a uniform. Personalized lesson plans are devised based upon the crime.
- Any adult who throws a childlike temper tantrum directed at us for doing our job is given a coloring book and some crayons and placed in timeout at the local library. They are told to color until they can find their “happy place.”
- A person making a joke about cops and donuts will receive a complimentary VHS tape of Rodney Dangerfield’s greatest hits.
- One who argues and then claims to be an attorney will owe us a $100 tuition fee as we usually need to teach this person a lesson in criminal law.
- A politician or their family member claiming to be above the law can join those who spit, vomit, urinate, and crap (see #1 and #2) cleaning up nasty stuff in public parks.
If any suggestion is currently in place, or becomes reality in the future, I would enjoy hearing about it. Until then, be safe!
Jim is the author of The Spirit behind Badge 145. He worked in military and civilian law enforcement for thirty-one years. While in the USAF he flew as a crewmember aboard the National Emergency Airborne Command Post—a presidential support detail. Following his military service, he served for twenty-seven years with the Fountain Valley Police Department in Orange County, California where he retired as a lieutenant. During his career in law enforcement, he worked with, supervised, or managed every element of the organization. He holds a bachelor of science degree in criminal justice from Southwest University and graduated from the prestigious Sherman Block Supervisory Leadership Institute as well as the IACP course, Leadership in Police Organizations. Jim is married and has three adult children and three grandchildren. You can contact him at [email protected] or view his websitewww.jimmcneff.com which is geared toward helping officers.