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Mike O’Meara, the president of the New York State Police Benevolent Association, is not the only cop fed up and exasperated with mainstream America’s incessant demonization of all law enforcement officers. Not by a long shot.
So is Travis Yates, a 27-year Tulsa cop who “grew up in a law enforcement family” but is now warning of an incoming police exodus.
In a powerful, nearly 1500-word long column published last week at LawOfficer.com, Yates poured his heart out over the growing disrespect for law enforcement that he’s seen as the decades have progressed.
“27 years have passed and if you would have told me the condition of law enforcement today, I would have never believed you,” he wrote. “It’s not that law enforcement has changed for the worse but everything around it has.”
To prove his point, he cited example after example after example:
- “The mentally ill used to get treatment and now they just send cops.”
- “Kids used to be taught respect and now it’s cool to be disrespectful.”
- “Supervisors used to back you when you were right but now they accuse you of being wrong in order to appease crazy people.”
- “Parents used to get mad at their kids for getting arrested and now they get mad at us.”
- “The media used to highlight the positive contribution our profession gave to society and now they either ignore it or twist the truth for controversy to line their own pockets.”
- “There used to be a common respect among criminals. If they got caught, they understood you had a job to do but now it’s our fault they sit in handcuffs rather than their own personal decisions.”
- “If someone attacked a cop, they were seen as such. Now we martyr them and sue for millions.”
- “We used to be able to testify in court and we were believed. Now, unless there is video from three different angles, no one cares what you have to say.”
Meanwhile, as cops have faced increasing demonization and harassment from children, parents, bystanders, journalists and politicians, the vast majority of cops have remained the same kind, caring, good people who they were when Yates first joined the force.
“I’ve seen cops help and save any type of race, gender or ethnicity you can think of and while that used to mean something, no one cares anymore,” he wrote. I’ve been called every name you can think of and many of them with racial overtones and it’s never come from cops.”
So have his former colleagues, one of whom was a black man who was called an Uncle Tom, a slur used to demean any black person who doesn’t subscribe to status quo thinking.
Yates continued by revealing that though he used to recommend the policeman’s life to “anyone” and “secretly hoped one of my kids would do it one day,” these days he “wouldn’t wish this job on my worst enemy.”
“It’s the only job you can do everything right and lose everything,” he explained. “It’s the only job where the same citizens you risk your life for hate you for it. It’s the only segment left in society where it’s cool to discriminate and judge, just because of the uniform you wear. You never get to explain. You can never reason with them.”
A perfect example of this is what happened Friday in Atlanta, where the fatal police shooting of a black suspect has automatically been blamed on racism and the officer-involved fired, despite the evidence pointing to the shooting having been justified:
“The man who drove drunk, assaulted a cop, stole his weapon and fired it at him, was shot because of racism” is an actual argument that people are making right now, because we live in the dumbest era in human history
— Matt Walsh (@MattWalshBlog) June 14, 2020
This isn’t to say bad cops don’t exist. The brutal slaying of Minneapolis black man George Floyd makes it clear that bad cops do exist. However, they’re an anomaly, not a feature, and most acts of alleged “police brutality” are wholly justified.
“Despite the most violent society we have ever seen, less than 1,000 suspects are killed a year. 96% are attacking us with weapons and all but a few others are attacking us with their cars or their fists and more and more with simulated guns so Benjamin Crump can help their family win the lottery,” Yates explained.
Crump is the attorney who defended the families of Trayvon Martin and Mike Brown.
Although most cops are good and most police shootings are justified, attacks on law enforcement have in recent days been ratcheted up to levels never seen before in American history, with activists and politicians now calling for the police to be defunded or outright abolished. To Yates, this is the final straw.
“You aren’t going to have to abolish the police, we won’t be around for it,” his piece concluded. “And while I know, most Americans still appreciate us, it’s not enough and the risk is too high. Those of you that say thank you or buy the occasional meal, it means everything. But those of you that were silent while the slow turning of the knives in our backs happened by thugs and cowards, this is on you.”
“Your belief in hashtags and memes over the truth has and will create an environment in your community that you will never expect. If you think Minneapolis will turn into Mogadishu and that is far from you, it’s coming. And when it does, remember what your complicity did. This is the America that you made.”
During an appearance last week on Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” Yates expounded further on how he and so many other cops feel.
Listen (disable your adblocker if the video doesn’t appear):
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