From The Daughter Of A Cop
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From The Daughter Of A Cop

The number of times I'm asked, "Do you fear for your fathers life"? worries me more and more as time passes.

From The Daughter Of A Cop
Maegan Zamora

Since anyone can remember, the police force has been known as a community of people who are supposed to come together to create a safe environment for the community they reside in. Now unfortunately, just because this is their job, does not make every policeman hero material. Remember, they are regular people who have bad days, suffer diseases, have failed marriages, and lose family members just like anyone without a uniform and a badge. However, just because not each of them fits the image we as society have created as "heroic", does not mean all of them are bad. What do I mean? Well, it's as simple as it sounds.

Growing up with a father who's a cop, I have been exposed to many things other people my age have not. For example, when I was younger, my dad would come home from work with tears in his eyes and a worn out look on his face, holding pictures of car wrecks with deadly results. Little did I know then that it was him who had to pull victims from vehicles about to explode, or worse, when accidents resulted in having to pull lifeless bodies from vehicles. He would call me over, sit me on his lap and say, "This is why you have to be smart, alert, and vigilant. You can trust what you, yourself, are doing, but you have to think for those who are not." Because my dad exposed me to the realities of life at such a young age, I not only understood the cruelties of life, but the consequences that came with being a cop.

I was raised in a very cultured household and was taught from a very young age that we are all pink inside and that everyone was fighting some kind of battle and usually very different from ours. I got along with all the kids at school, no matter their race, appearance, social status, etc. Because of this, I was able to see life in the eyes of other individuals. Maybe not in HD but I was definitely understanding of the different lifestyles and situations I was surrounded by, whether good or bad. I was best friends with a girl who lived down my block, she was Haitian and I vividly remember spending hours outside with her, climbing trees and collecting coconuts till dusk as my mom stood at a distance on the sidewalk just smiling. As simple as it sounds, it was moments like these that only justified how alike we all really are.

As I get older, I talk to my dad more. He has remained in the field of police work and almost every conversation we hold involves something that happened at work or what’s going on in the world and being amplified by the media. Now, you ask any person what they think about cops and their usual response is, "They're pigs. Pricks. Complete A-Holes". Now, if you ask why, its typically because they've had some type of ill experience or know someone who has or as today's controversy demonstrates, the unnecessary killing of black lives by racist cops. See, when my dad tells me about traffic stops, he mentions people going 100 mph in a 40 mph, (ugh he stopped me for going 60 over the speed limit in a heavily populated area or near a school zone. Such a prick, right? Or pulled over someone after taking a red light and was driving drunk (SUCH a pig!), or my favorite, domestic violence involving children and drugs. A lot of the time, when my dad patrolled the streets, depending on the circumstances, he would often let people go without even a warning. He uses context clues to see if the person he stopped was in a genuine situation where they just had a bad day yet were very respectful, to determine his next steps or course of action. The driver's demeanor, body language, type of car, appearance, etc. If my father ever feels that the person driving looks like they can’t afford a ticket, he uses his words to get a message across and sends them off ticket free.

Now, I know It’s a touchy subject. However, if media and society want to act all big and tough when standing up for their rights, then they'll have no problem facing the music. Racism still exists, I know. There are racist cops, I know, and there are cops with very big chips on their shoulder, and there are cops who just shouldn’t wear a badge. There are cops who are scared and not fit for police work, I know. However, why are we going to generalize this population of individuals as "pigs" for actions that do not represent all of them? That's exactly as if I were to generalize a population of any specific race or culture for what a smaller group of them, who are not so appealing, do. Two wrongs do not make a right and it’s hard, it definitely is. But starting riots, destroying businesses, and shooting random cops dead, who are someone’s father, brother, cousin, or son, is definitely not the smart way to get a message across, it’s pointless.

Now, it hurts me to see such tragedies going on in the media, because I put myself in the position of those who are suffering, the way I was raised to do. If you want to truly understand someone’s pain, you have to vividly put yourself in their shoes. I have spent nights crying because I want to do something to help what’s going on around me but I feel so helpless and disappointed at what we have all come to as humans. You would expect history to not repeat itself.

So, as the daughter of a cop, people ask, "how do you feel?" Well... How do I feel? I fear for my father's life every day to be honest. To know that people are getting revenge on random policemen by shooting them down makes me ache as many black mothers now fear for their son's life if he were to get stopped by a cop. I'm not saying I know the solution to what’s going on today because I'm only still taking note on it all to try and understand why it's unraveling the way it is. However, I am saying that the way we, as a community, are handling it, is not smart, productive, or right. I'm all for black lives matter, but I am also for ALL lives matter and I will also support my dad till the very end. I would also appreciate being able to see him come home from work alive, without worrying that someone is out to get him for a generalization of bad cops. If we all stop being ignorant and blind to what’s truly gone wrong with our society, with our family values, there won’t have to be a barrier between communities that have the potential to be one strong and united.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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