Saturday, March 10, 2007

In Defense of the Defenseless

As I was driving through the ghetto the other day, I realized an interesting parallel to my job and our nation's involvement in Iraq. First, let me see if I can put you next to me in the police car as I was driving through this neighborhood. It is by no means a South-Central, LA or a Brooklyn, NY...but here in Suffolk, it is as bad as it gets and can prove just as lethal. So first here we are rounding the curve leading into the neighborhood. There are many people standing on the side of the street who immediately pull out their cell phones and talk; presumably look-outs for the dope slingers...at least you hope they're just look-outs and not a foreboding of something more sinister. As we continue our slow roll, small groups of people seemingly come from nowhere. You quickly scan to determine any immediate suspicious activity (read "threatening activity") and we make our first turn which leads us in front of a row of people which reminds you of a receiving line at a wedding reception; but no handshakes or wishes of happiness and health will be offered here. We see nothing but blank stares on every face, but the hatred and detestment are palpable. The faces which you see say nothing, but the eyes speak volumes. We have just become a parasite; a virus which threatens to harm this semblance of a body.

My training is screaming in my head..."HANDS!", but I can see none. They are all buried down the front of pants or tucked under shirts. Yet much to your amazement, I drive on...slowly. Why? Because it is my duty and the duty of those like me. Because regardless of my personal fears, it is what I have sworn to do. Do the bulk of these people want me in their neighborhood? Absolutely not! Do the bulk of them respect the rule of law or the laws of human decency? Don't fool yourself. But regardless of what this facade appears to show, this is where we are needed the most. The civility of these communities demand it. Because without our presence and what we represent, eventually they would not have the luxury of standing on this street corner detesting our very existence.

And here is the parallel that I alluded to earlier-and please hear me out here...I willingly go where I am not wanted and to some extent hated because it is the RIGHT thing to do. We are in Iraq because it is the right thing to do. Argue oil and politics till the cows come home, but when the smoke clears and at the end of the day when we are staring at pictures of mass murder perpetuated at the hands of one man, tell me that as civil human beings and as a nation who has the means to do so, that we should not have defended the defenseless. Forget for a moment if you will national or ethnic differences...we are defending our fellow man because it is the right thing to do. Whether or not we should still be in Iraq is a separate issue which I will reserve for later chapters, but our presence in Iraq to defend human lives, in my opinion, cannot be argued. The right for human beings to live...to breath air...how can anyone argue that this should NOT be defended? "Well, their culture is such that a heavy-handed style of justice is all that they understand." Don't buy into this canned, cop-out of an excuse perpetuated by the main-stream media. It is not justice...it is murder. It is the treating of human life as if were as meaningful as a farm animal, and it is wrong. It is also wrong and un-American not to defend the lives of the defenseless regardless of what Continent they live on.

The current nuclear arms debacle screams of our worlds desire to revert to a "survival of the fittest" mentality; a "He with the most bombs wins" attitude. Our neighborhoods are but a microcosm of this. So should America become an island unto itself and hold up a sign which reads "Bring it on!" as we post out entire military might on our borders because we fear what "meddling" in the affairs of another country's government might lead to? Listen, we are not defending a nation...we are not defending a government. What our country is fighting for globally, and what I have fought for for over a year of my life in the desert of Iraq, is for human beings to be able to simply live and be secure in their lives.

The bottom line is this...I, my profession and my country stand for the rule of civility and the right of every human being to live secure in their birthright of life. These rights know no culture, no style of government and no geographic boundary. I will not only defend the lives of the helpless because it is my oath of office, but more importantly I will defend them because it is my duty as an American and as a fellow human being. This fact cannot be argued.

4 comments:

Barb said...

It's so important to remember that police officers like yourself are all about protecting ALL of our rights. So sad that the area you describe is so distrustful that they see you as the enemy of their happines instead of a positive force.
Protecting those who fear and hate you is quite a calling, my friend. It's a blessing that men and women like you are strong enough to take that task upon yourselves. Makes me very thankful, indeed.

Cheryl Friend said...

Well said, as always! You are a remarkable young man. Thank you so much for your service. God bless and stay safe.

Robert said...

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Jezzie said...

Death Squad in Delaware: The Case of the Murdered Marine http://freedominourtime.blogspot.com/2007/03/death-squad-in-delaware-case-of.html

How messed up is this?!?