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Aspiring Officers Choosing Other Professions Because of Anti-Police Sentiments

September 03, 2015  | 

Police departments face a recruiting shortage amid a growing anti-cop mood that some fear has taken the pride out of peacekeeping and put targets on the backs of the men and women in blue.  

Open calls for the killing of police have been followed by assassinations, including last week's murder in Texas of a Harris County sheriff's deputy. Instead of dialing back the incendiary rhetoric, groups including "Black Lives Matter" have instead doubled down at demonstrations with chants of "Pigs in a blanket, fry 'em like bacon." Public safety officials fear the net effect has been to demonize police, and diminish the job.

"It's a lot harder to sell now," Jeff Roorda, business manager of the St. Louis Police Officers Association and former state representative, told "This is a very real phenomenon."

Comments (6)

Displaying 1 - 6 of 6

Chad Wardlaw @ 9/3/2015 3:31 PM

Everyone who volunteers for law enforcement, the greatest and most satisfying career in the country, know the daily risks associated with it and accept them. Personally, I don't think it's just the current spike in law enforcement officer disrespect, officer assaults or officer murders that are discouraging people to enter the career field or making current officers pull back some. It's knowing that the lack of support and the knee jerk reactions from Obama, Lynch, some mayors, some attorney generals and some of the media that makes us hesitant. Obama, Holder, Sharpton, etc started this mess years ago and it unfortunately tied in with law enforcement events since Ferguson. Most of them have been justified but a few of them haven't been and those have been used to condemn all law enforcement actions. The fact that it's hardly ever emphasized strongly enough about the offenders initial actions, to draw law enforcement action in the first place, doesn't help either. Stay strong officers.

kevCopAz @ 9/3/2015 4:42 PM

what a big surprise? I recall when I join I was making twice the $ as a non cop yet since I was from a family with a history of service and I wanted to be a cop since we served the public and had the public support back then. Today, I would not have made that same decision. I don't blame quality folks from thinking a second time before signing up. The public deserves losing quality people if they want to treat them poorly, not support them and also gut their retirements and lower their pay. Why would anyone expect otherwise.

Jon Retired LEO @ 9/3/2015 4:52 PM

It is easy for this current administration to sit back and do nothing all the while being guarded by the Secret Service. I would imagine some federal officers are none too happy with it either bit don't dare speak their mind due to being fired by their boss.

Tom Ret @ 9/3/2015 5:27 PM

In general, the police should provide security and service for all no matter what their political stance. One exception that comes to mind is those that call for the murder of police officers. For one thing, this is not political discourse but akin to anarchy. To do so I believe is naïve and idealistic nonsense. It is asking too much of the police in what they have to tolerate or service they are mandated to provide. The leaders and organizers of these kill cop functions need to be targeted and prosecuted. Police need to demand this DOJ take action or there will be a lot less pro active policing going on. If the police don't band together don't expect anyone in this administration to take any action without major pressure. Taking a wait and see attitude will only result in increasing lawlessness, embolden cop killing rhetoric, and cops getting assassinated. There are less recruits because of unrealistic expectations of the police which everyone can see.

Robert @ 9/4/2015 10:58 PM

Is there any empirical evidence that police recruitment is down (and why)...or is this the OPINION of the local Police Union (who I would guess is probably biased).

I think Chad Wardlaw has some good comments....but he only sees one side with the statement (Paraphrase: most police shootings have been justified). There is another side of the many of these people killed deserved to die?
How do we reconcile those two polar opposites...because with more and more video, the light will be shown on more and more of these shootings.
Here is what I think:
We need to get our Mental Health system back up to speed...this will mean more in taxes...but there is no will for that by the politicians.
The investigation process needs more transparency...Grand Juries in police misconduct must be open.
Police discipline files need to be opened up for review when misconduct on the job is sustained.
Most aspects of LEBORs need to be rescinded..there is only 1 class of US citizen.

LEO (RET) @ 9/5/2015 10:40 AM

Just my opinion, but I think these potential recruits didn't have a LEO Warrior mindset deep down in their hearts to begin with. If they did, a true warrior would not hesitate one minute to sign up. Heck, I'm retired and have glaucoma, but if I were in my 20s, i'd be first in line, more so now just because of all the anti-LE bs going on right now.

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