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For those of us in law enforcement, the statement “something strange happened at work today” is not that uncommon. After all, society dumps upon us all of the things they would rather not deal with.
EMS also sees many of the same types of things. However, because we are the whipping-boy of an anti-American, loud-mouthed tiny fraction of the population, we are seeing the greatest country in the history of civilization seemingly turned on its head.
The first instance of strangeness happened on the weekend of the first riots after George Floyd’s death. I was in a local donut shop (cue the stereotype jokes) and was ordering when a woman at the other end of the counter told the cashier that she would pay for my purchase.
I immediately interjected and told her that she didn’t need to do that, I was more than capable of paying for my items. She insisted and explained that she wanted to do this as a show of support.
Time for some background info: I retired from a large, suburban, left-wing town where no one ever offered to buy me anything in my entire career. I now work in a small, rural farm town where the professional culture shock hits me regularly.
Back to the story: I objected vehemently, because there was a small crowd in this incredibly popular local establishment, but then I saw in this woman’s expression that she was hurt by my answer. I accepted as graciously as I could and I walked out, kind of bewildered.
Approximately one week later, I was doing some community policing (code word for standing in line at a small farm-run ice cream stand) when I again was interrupted paying for my ice cream. This time it was by a man, who insisted on paying because he was a Corrections Officer and couldn’t believe what he was seeing on the streets of America.
I argued with him saying that I was fine to pay for my own ice cream, but again I could see he felt hurt that I was refusing the kindness that he was offering.
I accepted, thanked him for his support and thoughtfulness, and took my ice cream back to the cruiser to now ponder the second instance of stranger support and kindness I had experienced in a very short time.
Saturday, on the 4th of July, I walked into a little deli-convenience store where they have a small grill in the back for short-order breakfasts and lunch. I ordered a breakfast wrap and while it was cooking, I heard a conversation going on between the owner at the cash register and a customer.
I didn’t really pay attention to the content as I was intent on watching the cook prepare my wrap from start to finish. I approached the counter and the customer asked me what I ordered. I told him what it was, expecting him to tell me how good that variety was, as he obviously was a regular.
Instead, he said “I got it.”
Here we go again.
I told him he didn’t need to do that, I was on overtime on the holiday and was more than capable of paying for my breakfast. He then insisted, saying that he was tired of all the stuff he was seeing on the news and he wanted to do something to show support for us.
He was 35-40 years old, in good shape, and his tone had an edge to it. I accepted his offer and thanked him profusely, and walked out.
This time I really started to think about the totality of what was happening to me. The tone of the third guy is what really made me figure this out.
These people doing this for me (for all of us symbolically) are in fact showing US support.
However, it is also their way of flipping off: the anarchists/Marxists who are burning down our cities and killing and injuring us; the D.A.’s who don’t prosecute the criminals but who dream up charges against cops doing their job (think Atlanta); the mainstream media who are actively trying to divide us and subvert this country.
These three people who spent a couple dollars each are showing us that we are in fact supported by the silent majority in this country, and these acts by them are their little resistance against a movement that they desperately want to fight against, but don’t really know how.
Believe me, I am as cynical as all of you out there having seen what I have seen and experienced in my career. But now, in this little farm town, I may have a couple cracks in that outer protective layer.
For those of you in blue in the literal trenches of these cities, I want you to know what some of us are seeing in the “heartland” people of this country. Something strange did happen at work today. Be careful out there.
Written by Stephen Estes
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