Friday 22 September 2017

"Weapons Grade Honesty".

Would this scene prompt you to any of these? A  cheeky smile and a wave as you walked past, or maybe dropping the mobile phone and checking your seatbelt as you drove past, or even an angry shout of "why aren't you out arresting smack heads and rapists".  This could so easily be me in the photo, and I've prompted all of these.

I guess it's all about how you see us.  Do you see police wasting time on a sunny day, or planning a high risk missing person search, or searching for a drug stash, maybe dispatching an injured animal, making an RV prior to assisting the health service Section a violent patient, helping a woman who jumped from her car to escape a violent husband or looking for lost car keys. Yep, I've done all that in places like this.

We don't always know what the police are doing.


"I used weapons grade honesty".

I heard that last week.  I thought is was fabulous.

The context was an officer explaining how he "responded" to a complaint at a parish meeting. The complaint had been about police not doing enough to enforce a "No Entry" sign on a rural road.

It made me laugh (inwardly!) as my mental picture of the scene in the church hall gained detail.

I guess "Weapons Grade" means different things to different people, but is mostly associated with very unpleasant materials intended to do horrid things to the other side.

It's the association with "honesty" that tickled me.  No enemies, no unpleasant materials and intended to simply let people know what the police have been up to instead of sitting in wait for commuters.

The summary of the honesty was simply how many officers were working, how many crimes they were investigating, what incidents and crimes we still had to attend and how many truly vulnerable people rely on the police in times of crisis.

I suspect that some police in the past have not been too keen to share exactly where we are or what we have done.   In my experience it has not been because we want to deceive the good people of our communities.  I guess the reason is one of not wanting to cause nasty anxieties and nervousness by oversharing with those who have had very little to do with real time policing. 

So, before the "strongly worded emails" are fired at the police or "demanding action" letters are enriched by one of a number of interested elected officials and dropped on the police, perhaps it is better to have a chat or come and see what we do.

Maybe a Lay Observation patrol would be interesting.  Or emailing 101 and asking for an appointment to talk through a community issue. Or even writing to the police and asking for someone to call round when they can.

In any case, life is so much nicer if we can talk to each other rather than "escalating" to a state of Mutually Assured Disgruntlement.  (OK - I may have just made up that last word but I like it).



Please, be safe on the roads, considerate to those around you and respectful of property.


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