Is being “willing” to respond the same as being “prepared” to respond to a disaster scenario? Critically examine these concepts and realities.
Review and Critique Chapter 2 of The Courage to Commit.CHAPTER 2
What Makes a Good Police Officer?
The most honest and direct reply to this question is “a good person who happens to be a police officer.” The original question suggests that a police officer is something other than human. We all get caught up in labeling and assigning titles to identify people who we may not understand instead of identifying them by their individual accomplishments. By labeling an entire group, especially when we do not understand the group, it is very easy to associate bad behavior from one person in the group as a trait of every person in that group. The truth is that not everyone in any group shares the same traits. The hope is that police departments hire people with good traits that are common to good people.
A good police officer is a good person who happens to be a person who seriously accepts the awesome
responsibility. The few basic traits a good person possesses are compassion, honesty, integrity, truthfulness, grace, mercy, a belief in justice, –and most important of all, humility. Humility is at the top of the list because in order for one to truly be humble, they must possess all the previous mentioned traits. These are traits that cannot be taught; they are ones that come from the heart and are forged into the spirit of a person through their upbringing and life experience.
Considering the Role and Responsibility of Power
It is logical that one would believe the above-mentioned traits that define a good person would also define a good police officer. This may not be the case as there is one component to this equation that is unique to a police officer that the average person does not have. That component is power. All people, no matter who they are, experience a change in their perspective. A person who does not possess all the good traits may have a perspective that is not in line with what is considered good.
A simple comparison is, in business and industry, the most a person with power can do is take another
person’s job away. Depending on the moral fiber of that industry boss, the abuse of their power may become easy for them and they may use that as a shortcut to get out of retraining someone or dealing with a complicated situation. The quick solution phenomenon of removing a person from a company as a matter of convenience rather than cause may result in the industry boss losing their moral compass, thus losing their compassion for others.
This phenomenon can also be present in persons who have enormous power, such as police officers. Police officers have the ability to take away a person’s freedom. The officer must keep their morality, humility, and compassion for others, and practice grace and mercy every day. Keeping these virtues at the forefront of their thinking demands that the officer employ a different manner of thinking and a lifestyle that upholds these virtues. They must know their job and the people they serve so well that they have the ability to know when their ac
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