Politics and politicians affect so many people, but none more than cops, who are the buffer between moronic politicians and the people. Without cops to pick and choose which laws are plain stupid and refuse to enforce, and which are necessary for a society, we would be subject to every stupid idea some moron in office thought should be law. Since 4:00 pm yesterday, over 15 cops have been shot. 2010 was one of the worst years ever for cops killed on duty. 2011 is starting off just as bad. Community policing has weakened the image of a cop from a big, strong man who enforces laws, to a mere community service person who is there to literally serve whining citizens. Add to that a growing hatred of cops, which stems from both the individual, and issues in society that add to a bad image of cops. As a former cop, I want to thank all the men and women who put on a vest, badge and gun and take the safety of strangers into their own hands at the risk of their own lives. In my brief time behind the badge, I realized the following: The general public often demands of cops: - The knowledge of a lawyer- they expect a cop to know everything about every law, and be able to recall it on the side of a street at a seconds notice. The job demands common sense as well as book knowledge. Anyone who thinks otherwise is truly ignorant. There are no dumb cops. Lazy ones yes. Corrupt ones, sometimes. Lack of commons sense? Some of the rookies who wont last long, yes. Dumb? None. - The courage of a soldier- they expect a cop to run into a gunfire situation, against superior firepower many times, without hesitation. - The fitness of an athlete- despite society at large in the country being mostly obese, citizens hammer any cop who may be carrying a few extra pounds......while at the same time calling the very fit guy who keeps his uniform impecable "uptight" for presenting such an image, and saying he was just bullied in high school. Can't win with appearance. - The morality of clergy. They expect a cop to be the upmost of morality, which is fine. A cop is not allowed to be seen without a seat belt. Or speeding 5 over. Cops are expected to follow every law, every second of every day, which literally no citizen can live up to. - The patience of a teacher- They expect cops to have absolutely no temper, despite wanting a guy who is alpha type and willing to run into gunfire, they also expect him to stand there and be verbally blasted and put up with people acting like pure animals, all while keeping a calm, neutral demeanor. Good luck. - The creativity of a guidance counselor- These days, cops are called on to be nannys for out of control children, the mediator between neighbors who cant even ask the other to put the barking dog inside the home, and the solution to every single nusance that any citizen cant figure out themselves without government help. - The willingness to work for the pay of a janitor. Combine all the above expectations into a job description, and no one would want that shit. Add to it that the janitor of the local city hall probably makes nearly as much as the cops (same with firemen and teachers) and it's amazing that anyone would sign up for that job at all. But amazingly, tonight in America, thousands of cops will enter their roll call breifing, possessing all of the above, and go out into the streets with no clue if their night will consist of sheer boredom and trying to mix the perfect cup of coffee at 2am at the local 7-11...........or clinging to life with bullets in them while their loved ones wait in terror in the ER waiting room. God Bless you all, and be safe. The above applies just the same to all you military folks, who sadly are being turned into the "World Police" and getting hamstringed by lawyers the same way domestic cops are. A tribute thread to you all is justified too.....can a vet please take that up for me?