Back in the dawn of my career, cops were the professional model. Ah, the day of professional police officers. They were blue knights for the citizenry.
Then came the community oriented police officer. This officer was a problem-solver who nearly became a social worker but could solve nearly any problem. Oh, we were loved by all.
Now, in today's post-9/11 world, we are fighting a different source of evil. I need young warriors. Can I get a volunteer?
Today's Evil and Demands
I could go on and on about terrorism; I am deeply steeped in it. We need to continue to educate ourselves to prepare for this epic fight. To combat this coming evil we need brave warriors, not report takers. To add to our workload, drug trafficking and gang violence are more apparent than ever. To face these types of criminality and brutal behaviors, I need young warriors, not someone to sing kum-ba-ya.
When I pop into the academy I see a different breed being molded there. Not those interested in the time clock, the contract, or just here for a paycheck and pension. I see those willing to step up to the battle that looms.
Today's younger breed of warriors knows that intelligence-led policing will fuel their tactics and investigations. But there is much more to cover in the realm of law enforcement, and it's difficult to get adequate education and training in everything, including history. Remember that with all of our new technology and tactics, there is also much to be learned from the past. We must not forget our traditions.
Who is this Young Warrior?
Today I see the younger officers who know that they are going to face a challenge—either domestic or foreign—that will far surpass anything that my generation has seen or fought. I wish I could turn back the clock and join them, but at this stage of life all I can do is pass on my knowledge and lead. I pray to be with them; they are going to be brilliant, I know.
Today's warriors know they wear the shield of the police officer and help protect the weak and helpless ones. They enforce the laws and investigate the collisions. They also know they are obligated to protect their country and homeland.
For those of you either in the academy realm or in the FTO program, you have the hardest job in law enforcement now. You must perform the regular tasks and duties of the peace officer as you also prepare for the next stage. You are trained in domestic terrorism and preparedness; my generation could not fathom this in our day. Demands on you are harder, your curriculum is more complex, and the stressors you could face are uncharted. I want you on my force and becoming the next generation of officers, for you will protect me and my family in later years.
You are preparing and I am passing on both my knowledge and hopes to you, young warriors. Prepare, for our nation's safety is in your hands.
Train hard and train smart….We are all depending on you.