Sunday 4 November 2012

Guess Who

This picture and the accompanying text stopped me dead in my tracks. Thought provoking and very true. The recent murder of two police officers in Manchester makes the reality come home much better than I ever could. For me the phrase "picture is worth a thousand words" does come instantly to mind. So maybe the phrase should be "a picture and a thousand words" now.

The Transcript. 

© Hybrid Dave
"I make holding your hand seem like the biggest thing in the world after someone just tried to hurt you. I make those annoying sirens seem like angels when you need them. I can make your children breathe when they stop. I make myself get out of bed at 3am to risk my life to save people I've never met. I make it possible to keep back the chaos everyday. I make myself go to work for your family’s safety, a duty that I will die for. I make myself work birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, nights, during snow, storms, and other disasters. I work 24/7 with shifts that take their toll on your body and mind; I miss special occasions and events with family and friends, anniversaries, your children’s school plays, birthday parties, Christmas and New Year celebrations. I have to be an expert in criminal law, human rights, a social worker, a negotiator, and understand mental health. One minute I have to be aggressive, intrusive and dominate, then gentle, sensitive and caring. I scream and shout to control crowds then tell someone a loved one has passed away. I speak to children in a way they understand then try and communicate with an elderly, vulnerable and confused person. I have to run towards danger as everyone else runs away. I have to humour drunks, by listening to the same sayings over and over again throughout the night, ‘No I can't give you a lift home’, ‘No you can’t pee in my hat if you’re pregnant’, ‘Thank you for paying my wages’. I have to know more about chemicals than a pharmacist, we have to know more about chemical reactions in the body than a doctor. I have to deal with domestic disputes better than a relate counselor, sorting out people’s lives and tangled webs. I can never lose my temper. I can catch a robber or burglar red handed but if I forget to dot an ‘i’ and cross a ‘t’ a solicitor will get them released. I have to make instant decisions on the street when I'm cold, wet tired and hungry at 3 o'clock in the morning, only to be told by a panel of senior officers that ‘You should have done this, you should have done that.’ I can stop a speeding motorist speeding near a school only to be told ‘You should be catching real criminals’. If I go out to buy food or eat out in uniform, people stare at me like I’m an alien or whisper about a ‘waste of taxpayer’s money’ I need to eat. If I don’t turn up instantly then we are useless, if I don’t solve a crime within a day then we are even more useless. Nobody likes us until they need us. Like an insurance company, a necessary evil that you only call upon when something needs fixing! Today I might make the ultimate sacrifice. I want to make a difference, I want to help, we care, we cry, we bleed."


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