What Police Brutality Means For Police Families
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Politics and Activism

What Police Brutality Means For Police Families

We're all fighting the same fight.

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What Police Brutality Means For Police Families

Sometimes, it’s hard to be a police officer’s girlfriend.

Sometimes, it’s hard because our work schedules don’t match up very well or because I dread the day in October when he has to leave to spend four months at the Academy, or because he has to spend money we don’t have on high-powered flashlights and off-duty gun holsters.

But recently, it’s been hard because police brutality has shaken our nation.

For every bad cop who commits a heinous crime, thousands of good cops fall victim to hostility and sometimes even violence because of the growing tension between law enforcement and the public. Innocent, good-natured officers have been assaulted and killed at random by people who are angry about Ferguson, Baltimore, and Cincinnati, and if the list of events continues to grow, the list of fallen officers will, too.

Of course, the number one focus of this issue is racism. My heart breaks for those who are affected by racism every day, whether it’s through microaggressions or murder, but I can’t speak for those victims. I’m a white girl in a small town with a 99% white population, and while I strongly support the "Black Lives Matter" and all other efforts to eliminate racism and hatred from our society, I don’t pretend to actually know what it’s like to be judged or treated differently based on race. White privilege is a very real concept and many take it for granted. But although I can’t speak from experience to the issue of racism, my heart breaks every time a black man or woman falls victim to police brutality.

My heart breaks first and foremost for the victims and their families. But it also breaks for every single police officer whose job gets harder and more dangerous every time, no matter where they live or how dedicated they are to protecting and serving with integrity. It breaks for their significant others, friends, children, parents, and communities, all of whom now have to fear for their beloved officers’ lives a little bit more. It breaks for my boyfriend, who kisses my nose every time he leaves for work and jams in the shower to early 2000s pop music when he gets home as if he didn’t just spend ten hours putting his life on the line for our community.

Bad cops not only put innocent citizens’ lives at risk, they also destroy citizens’ trust in and respect for all cops, which puts good cops at risk, too. Racism and police brutality are extremely complicated issues with numerous different layers, and no matter which layer hits home to us, we all need to care about finding a solution and work to understand and be sensitive to those affected by other layers. We’re all fighting the same fight, and we’re all on the same side of the thin blue line for which true law enforcement stands.

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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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