To Serve & Protect OR Law & Order?

Discussion in 'Law and Justice System' started by Stainmaster, Apr 18, 2010.

  1. Stainmaster
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    Stainmaster BANNED

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    A friend of mine is a police officer in West Covina, and we were discussing police policy. We concluded that the idea of to 'Serve & Protect' is really a question. To serve and protect who? The answer could well be the wealthy citizenry.

    Law and Order is really what police work is all about - the idea is keep problems quiet and out of sight of the public.

    My friend, the Southern California officer pointed out that each community sees things differently. We discussed the multitude of problems people have with police in Santa Monica that are frequently on the local news. My friend's comment was most revealing. "Everything always looks great in Santa Monica if you have money to spend, but don't look for real help." Check out this short video, and think about needing help in affluent Santa Monica, California.

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P1KonTIXbSA"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P1KonTIXbSA[/ame]
     
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    Last edited: Apr 18, 2010
  2. Diuretic
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    Diuretic Permanently confused

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    I think both of you are correct, but it's a little more complex than that. The policing function is about protecting the status quo, whatever it is at any given time in a given place.

    Through history and across the world there have been bodies involved in what we would call order maintenance functions. It's not just about protecting the wealthy, although it can look like that because order maintenance is about making sure there are no ructions in civil society. Even the much-lauded Robert Peel who put the New Police on the streets of London in 1829 was really putting out a more effective public order maintenance function than the military (see the Peterloo Massacre).
     
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  3. George Costanza
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    George Costanza A Friendly Liberal

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    Ideally, I would like to think that "To Protect and to Serve" means to protect everyone who comes into contact with the criminal justice system - both victims and suspects alike.

    On a broader level, I think it means to protect the community. After all, that is what police are for: to insure an orderly and crime-free community.
     
  4. The Rabbi
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    The Rabbi Diamond Member

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    I think Cumstainmaster is still sore about that weed charge.
     
  5. editec
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    editec Mr. Forgot-it-All

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    To serve and protect...THE LAW.

    Ideally, if the laws are just, that means they coincidently end up serving the people.

    IF the laws of the land serve the people, that is....

    No tyrant has EVER had trouble finding cops to serve and protect THEM exclusively, either, ya know?
     
  6. chanel
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    chanel Silver Member

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    Small towns in my area do "community policing" and have a good relationship with the public. It can only happen in areas where there is mutual repect. Unfortunately, that doesn't happen in high crime areas.
     
  7. George Costanza
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    George Costanza A Friendly Liberal

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    It is easy for "mutual respect" to exist between law abiding citizens and the police. You are never going to see a police officer proning out the local bank president he stops for a minor traffic violation. Police officers can be (and invariably always are) very nice to "good" citizens. When has a police officer been anything except polite to you?

    In high crime areas, the attitude of the police changes markedly. Not so nice to folks here. Lots more rudeness on the part of police toward citizens who appear to be potential criminals, whether they are or not. Here, your local bank president might get proned out if he got stopped for a minor traffic violation and happened to be black.

    Good for small towns where community policing is something that can be done. Let's just not lose our perspective, however. It isn't that rosy everywhere else.
     
  8. The Rabbi
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    The Rabbi Diamond Member

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    And it's mutual. Cops get abused all the time just because they wear the uniform. The average low life suffers no penalty for being rude and obnoxious while the cop can lose his job over something minor.
     
  9. Stainmaster
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    Stainmaster BANNED

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    I thinkyou have summed this up very well, and those who benefit from the status quo the most are the wealthy.
     
  10. Skull Pilot
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    Skull Pilot Platinum Member

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    The police do not protect you.

    All they can do is react after the crime has been committed.

    You want protection? Arm yourself.
     

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