I'm a former FBI special agent, here's why I want you to Back the Blue

A police officer might respond to more than 62,000 calls over his or her career

There are only two occupations in the USA where there is a risk of being killed by an intentional act of violence: military and law enforcement. True heroes. 

Think about a time you called 911 for police assistance.  It may have been a dire circumstance, or it may have been for something more mundane. You were not calling to chat about your happiest moment in life.  You needed someone with the appropriate skills and authority to enforce the law to protect you and your family. 

Every year there are millions of other Americans nationwide making similar calls. If you’ve never needed law enforcement’s assistance, consider yourself fortunate. 


Put yourself in the shoes of a police officer. Depending on the jurisdiction, city’s population and crime rate, an officer will respond to varying numbers of calls per shift.

Let’s say the average officer might respond to 10 calls per shift, they probably work 5 shifts a week, 50 weeks a year. Many police officers retire after 20 to 25 years of service. That’s more than 62,000 calls over a career.

Each of those interactions has potential for danger – 62,000 unknowns behind that door. Officers respond thousands of times and get most of it right.  There is no such thing as perfect but for the most part, they do an outstanding job. 

Cops are constantly running toward danger when everyone else is running away.  They save countless lives. They see adults and children killed at the hand of evil, and mangled bodies from vehicle accidents.  They run toward and neutralize active shooters.  They rescue victims of domestic, sexual violence, and human trafficking. They respond to heartbreaking suicides. Tragically some have had to witness their own brother or sister-in-law enforcement be killed right before their eyes.  


Law enforcement officers rarely open up and share the darkness and trauma they deal with. They stand strong, but it takes a physical, mental and emotional toll. They are not robots, they are humans. 

placeholderThey feel fear and anger and other emotions just like everyone else but are expected to never show vulnerability. Officers must be on point every single moment.  It’s a tremendous amount of pressure and requires mental discipline, motor skills, patience, courage and forward-thinking. 

On top of that, police officers aren’t earning a lucrative Wall Street income. The risk they are taking on does not commensurate with their salaries. They do not select the career for the money, they do it for love of country. They miss numerous holidays and celebrations with their loved ones, police work goes on 24 hours a day, every day of the year

Each year we honor our fallen law enforcement officers during National Police Week, which begins May 9 this year. My deepest honor and respect go to the brave men and women who wake up every day, put on the police uniform and protect our nation. 

According to the National Law Enforcement Officer Memorial Fund website, "64 officers were shot and killed in the line of duty in 2022, mirroring the 64 officers who were shot and killed in 2021. From 2010 through the end of 2020, an average of 53 officers were killed each year by felonious assaults involving firearms. The 64 deaths by gunfire in both 2021 and 2022 continues to represent an increase of 21% compared to recent historical norms." 


According to the National Fraternal Order of Police, between January 1, 2023, and May 1, 2023, 135 officers have been shot and 15 officers killed by gunfire.

For far too long, many Americans have taken for granted law enforcement officers who are entrusted to protect them from evil.  In recent years, particularly since 2020, there has been an increase in the vilification, disdain and disrespect for our law enforcement officers.  This is unacceptable.  The aggressive promotion of the "Defund the Police" movement is demoralizing to our heroes.  Police officers are now retiring and resigning from service at record rates. 

placeholderWhy would someone want to take on the safety and legal risks associated with being a cop only to literally be spit on, yelled at, assaulted and even killed when there is such disrespect and hatred for that willing sacrifice?  

"Defund the Police" has also proven to be devastating to communities nationwide as violent crime is rampant.  Those assaulting police officers have been emboldened by this movement. When criminals know there is no consequence for harming officers, the bad behavior continues. Lack of respect for law enforcement by elected federal officials from D.C. down to governors, mayors, and city council members has created an atmosphere that serves to undermine law enforcement.  


Defunding leads to reduced training and freezes on hiring; this hurts the security of all impacted communities. The police need elected officials’ and citizens’ support to do their jobs.  In many instances officers are highly scrutinized and their hands are tied in performing their duties. The damaging effects cannot be reversed overnight.  It may take a generation to recover and instill respect again for law enforcement.  

It is disheartening to listen to those who have never worked a day in the life of a police officer, never run towards gunfire, or never put handcuffs on a violent criminal, criticize law enforcement.  As a former FBI special agent, I worked on the FBI’s South Florida Violent Crime Fugitive Task Force.  I had the honor of serving shoulder-to-shoulder with the finest local, state and federal law enforcement partners as we fought crime. In all my years, I witnessed nothing but professionalism, dedication and sacrifice by those sworn to protect. 

To those families whose law enforcement loved one paid the ultimate sacrifice, being killed in the line of duty, I say, your loss is not in vain. They are true heroes and although the wound you suffer from their loss may never heal, they are appreciated and will be honored during this police week and always.  

May God bless you and your families. Back the Blue

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