As the end to this rather macabre experiment is upon me, I have some final thoughts. First let me say that two law enforcement officers were lost this week, each with only one year of service behind them. And both Agent Dittman and Officer Fazette leave behind a child and a wife. They, too have made the ultimate sacrifice, and I thank them as I think about them tonight.
Also of note in this tragic story is that both officers were killed in traffic accidents. Driving is far and away the most dangerous thing cops do. It isn’t even close to getting shot, stabbed, or beat in a fight. It is our cars that kill us.
I set out to really “pay attention” for a fixed period of time to the officers killed on duty in the U.S. I am glad I did, and offer a few observations:
1. I became weirdly “anxious” to log on each night and see if another officer had died. I feared they had, and also felt increasing calm as each night without a death passed. Yet each time I learned of a new line of duty death, I seemed to experience the other recent ones all over again.
2. As if I wasn’t bad enough already, my rage at how little people care about these officers has increased tenfold. It is pathetic that a “Google” search for many of them left no real mention, save that of a local paper or obituary item. I feel the same for our armed forces members who die on duty.
Try a “Google” search on the name of a suspect that the police shoot. That will return hundreds of hits every time. It is this balance that is long overdue to be reset in the good guys’ favor.
3. Hundreds of people read about these officers at www.odmp.org or here at the Philosophical Cop. That is a start. Thanks for sharing their stories with me.