Police Careers: More Dangerous Than Ever?

Police Careers: More Dangerous Than Ever?

My husband used to toy with the idea of being a police officer, but his love of greasy things—from bicycles to car motors—won over his desire to wear the badge. My best friend’s husband went to school to become an officer of the law, but due to lack of opportunity in our county, he hasn’t yet had the opportunity.

With evidence supporting that law enforcement jobs are more dangerous than they’ve been in the past, however, I think we might want to be grateful that our husbands aren’t out and about serving and protecting. According to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, 2010 was the deadliest year for police officers in the past twenty years. However, in 2011, we’ve already had even more fatalities, with 57 officers dead before the year is even halfway through.

Most of these deaths were attributed to gunfire, though some were also caused by traffic incidents and other causes.

Now I know that 57 is relatively low for a career with thousands of men and women serving; carpentry, the career my father had his whole life, could be considered just as dangerous, with tens of thousands of people injured and many killed annually as well. Still, knowing that this is a twenty-year high, and knowing that these individuals are trained against the violence that takes their lives and they still fall pretty to it, is very disheartening.

National Police Week is actually coming up next month. During May 15 through 21, your local police headquarters or city hall might be hosting some events or festivities honoring police officers. Call and see if there is anything you can do to take part; if there is nothing going on, you might wish to hold a candlelight vigil to honor those who have fallen, as well as to pray for their families and those who still serve. You could even get your children together to bake some goods or draw cards to mail in.

Though I’ve known some horribly nasty cops in my life, I’ve also known some extremely brave and honorable ones; it’s just like any other profession, with both good and bad apples. And no matter what shade the apple may be, death isn’t something I’d wish on anyone—especially the violent death that many of these officers have met. My heart goes out to these police officers and their families, and to anyone still entering the force—good luck, and stay safe.