This past Friday, two police officers were shot by a suspect in my borough of the Bronx, resulting in the death of Police Sergeant Paul Tuozzolo. The suspect, identified as 35 year old Manuel Rosales fled the scene but was eventually killed by the police during a shootout that ensued. This happens days before the elections, and in a year in which police relationship with the community looks completely deteriorated one must post the question: If the police alone can’t control the crime, what can I do to help?
Well, the first thing one might think of is to join the force. The NYPD has a very competitive cadet program open to college students residing within the 5 boroughs. I applied to this program, not because I expect to one day work as a police officer, but because I would like to understand how policing looks from the side of the law. I am set to begin in January.
However, you don’t have to join the NYPD to make a change and fight against crime. To do your part, it is as easy as standing up against criminals. Sometimes you know who they are, where they gather, and what they do. If they are young, the best thing you can do is try to get them help by giving them advice as in most cases these youth fall into crime because of a lack of proper guidance. Lack of family structure, manners, education, and poverty are all contributors that make it easy to fall into a life of crime.
Others, may want to go straight to their local precincts and demand more policing and snitch people out. While some view snitching as a bad thing, it is in fact a good thing to do if you care about your community and the law. Criminals should not be allowed to parade the streets because people are afraid of them. This is something that begins with us, the law abiding citizens. If we truly want to control the violence and murders in our inner cities, then it is up to us to stand together with the police and make the criminals face our justice system.