Just as anyone with a computer can access a bunch of lawyers chatting amongst themselves, showing that we are not (as conspiratorial theorists suppose) a cabal with plans for world hegemony, so too can we see into the world of police officers. And it’s a lot of fun!
Via J-dog on twitter came this post at Officer.com, “where law enforcement officers let their hair down and beat the living crap out of one another,” by a retired cop, Jim Donahue, who now serves as a consultant to police departments on the tactical use of police vehicles. But this post had nothing to do with his area of expertise. Rather, he was P.O.’d.
(Author’s Note: I originally wrote this article while I was still pretty steamed-up over the incident. I named names and pointed fingers and specific agencies and people. My always gracious editor suggested that I cool down and reexamine the writing. In the interest of peace and harmony, I’ve removed the specific names while attempting to retain its original fire.)
And what got him so steamed?
As I arrive at the front of the cars, there are two civilians who, like me, have emerged from their cars and are visiting with each other while they wait. There is a grunt cop standing in the immediate area, near his vehicle.
I politely inquire, “Is there an estimate on how much longer the crew will be?”
The cop looks straight at me, but as though he doesn’t see me, turns around, and walks a short distance away towards his unit. To say that I we perplexed at this behavior is fair.
When the cop takes up a new position, I make the same inquiry again. He proceeds to look away as though he doesn’t hear me.
WHAT THE HELL ARE WE DOING?
I was pissed at his behavior. The agency is known as being arrogant, often displaying a smell me attitude with the citizens and other cops, alike, but, this was simply rude and blatant beyond anything I could have anticipated.
Clearly, Donahue is a person of limited anticipation. The “grunt cop” could have pistol whipped him, arrested him, charged him with attempted murder of a police officer. There was plenty he could have done to be even “ruder”.
But as pointed out by one of the commenters, Donahue’s concern may not have been limited to the cop’s simple lack of common courtesy to a civilian. Donahue describes himself thusly:
I am wearing my only sweatshirt, which has a breast emblem from my previous department in Michigan. I just got my “high & tight” haircut tuned up yesterday. It would not be a great leap of faith to think that I may be a retired cop, a current cop, or minimally, related to law enforcement based upon my appearance and demeanor.
The commenter, in turn, notes:
In reading the article, it appears to me that the writer was more insulted that he was not recognized as a former officer. How many former officers have we known throughout the years that forgets that they are no longer an officer, thus perhaps are not privied to certain information. Seems to me every former officer I’ve ever come in contact with thinks information about whatever should be given to them because of who they were. Yet, thats just it…who they were.
I wonder if that smack mussed Donahue’s “high & tight” hairdo? And other commenters as well were less than impressed by this critique of one of their own by some former cop. The lesson, of course, is that a former cop is a former cop, and no longer a member of the fraternity, no matter how much they believe that the mini-badge in their wallet should count for something.
While there aren’t usually many lessons to be learned from these law enforcement websites that we haven’t already learned in spades from the representation of our clients and cross-examination of police officers, it’s always fun to have our best and worst fears confirmed. There is no situation where a police officer can’t invent some justification to protect a fellow officer, and the bottom line is that, while believing that they are truly the last bastion of order for the civilized world, they really do hate the rest of us, and the rest of us apparently includes former cops as well.
I really hope Santa brings me that Minneapolis Police Department t-shirt for Christmas.
H/T Kathleen for this very attractive pic of Jim Donahue. I think the glasses make him look a bit like John Lennon.