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Blatchford: When instructed by police, comply to avoid potential issues | COMMENTARY

These days it’s nearly impossible to settle on a single topic. There’s the pandemic, vaccines and related problems. We have the border crisis (yup, it’s a crisis) where untold thousands have been encouraged to overwhelm an understaffed border. Many untested Hispanics are being transported to various parts of our country. That’s right — our country. So much to discuss, so little space.

Many are concerned when law enforcement officers (LEO’s) have a fatal encounter — especially with young people. Having read many such reports, I’ve determined that the solution is simple. It’s been repeated ad nauseam, so I’m not revealing anything new, simply repeating the obvious. Sadly, thus far, it seems that the word isn’t getting out.

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The solution is, when a LEO (aka cop) gives you instructions, comply!

Let’s look at the obvious facts. I’m not a person of color and I’m old. So you know what that makes me to the leftists, but I digress. To date, I’ve been stopped by LEO’s a fair number of times for speeding. Another time, in Columbus, Georgia, four Army buddies and I (in uniform) were needlessly stopped for a walking violation. Our alleged infraction was strolling (sight-seeing) through a quiet residential neighborhood where strolling servicemen were out of place. Where I’m going with this is when stopped by a LEO for whatever reason, have always complied, been polite and respectful and never, ever, argued. Why would a reasonable person do otherwise? It’s not difficult and such behavior significantly shortens the encounter.

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I’ve heard of parents who tell stories about sitting their kids down to have what they call “the talk” (how to interact with police). Interestingly, my parents never felt such a talk to be necessary. Why? It was due to the fact that I was brought up to respect the law and to be especially respectful of LEO’s and all adults. At no point in my life would it have occurred to me to talk back to a cop. In my particular case, had I ever mouthed off to a LEO, I would have had to deal with my dad after the LEO was done with me. No way.

Comprende? It only takes common sense.

Chris Rock once gave a comedic lecture to the youth of this country. His standup routine included a warning not to mess with someone who wears a badge, carries a stick designed to hurt you, has cuffs to restrain you and a gun to do whatever should all else fail. Who in their right minds messes with someone who legally carries a firearm? To all who have, what were you thinking?

So, come on people. Accept an encounter that may inconvenience you for a bit. Surely, it beats the potential alternative which can and does put lives at risk. For those who choose to resist, the alternative for you and your family can be devastating — for a long, long time.

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Now, one might assume that older Americans, in an effort to guide and protect youngins as my parents did, would strongly educate the youngins in proper (potentially lifesaving) behavior when interacting with all adults — let alone LEO’s acting in an official capacity. I would suspect that most do, but sadly there exist potential role models that actually work to the detriment of the young. These would include people such as Rev. Al Sharpton, Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Congresswoman Maxine Waters, various rappers and innumerable other rabble rousers who have influential access to America’s youth. Add to the list anyone who has advocated the philosophy to “resist authority.”

If kids were instilled with proper respect for others (all others), how many more of them would be alive today? How much personal injury and property damage might have been avoided.

In closing, I’ve only had one negative encounter with a LEO. This man, in Howard County, truly concerned me. He was angry without cause. That being the case, I was extra careful to accede to his instructions and totally compliant. I was on my way in five minutes. Most LEO’s are caring protectors of civilians. They deserve respect and thanks for what they do.

It’s so, so simple. If a cop tells you to do something, “just do it!” Remember. It’s only a temporary inconvenience. Choose life and/or freedom. Learn to tolerate life’s exceptions and inconveniences. Like the poor, they will always be with us.

Rick Blatchford writes from Mount Airy. His column appears every other Tuesday. Contact him at rpblatch4d@comcast.net.

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