Guardians, not Warriors

Hi Everyone! Robert Whiteside here.

Please see this very good recent article over at Policeone.com. Go here to read the article.

This article speaks to LAPD’s efforts to help change their policing culture from that of being Warriors to, instead, being Guardians of their communities.

Kate Mather writes:
“Departments across the country are taking steps to replace the warrior mentality with a different approach, one that emphasizes protection over suppression, patience instead of zero tolerance. It’s a fundamental shift, one that could affect issues such as how often officers fire their guns and the way they walk down the street.”

The article addresses how LAPD officials are re-focusing their efforts toward training Officers to deal more effectively with mentally ill persons, to build trust in the communities, and to re-visit their use of so-called “tactical language,” i.e., using foul language toward others as a means of gaining/maintaining control. Deputy Chief Bill Scott is quoted as saying: “That’s one of the biggest problems that we have,” he said. “How we talk to people.”

This is a very good article in how it raises so many timely and valuable points about law enforcement in America. If she is to continue to prosper and grow in a positive direction, we absolutely must mend the relationships between our communities and all the men and women who serve there. My wish is that this training at LAPD and everywhere else is not simply a one-off anomaly. In order to change the culture, in a real, sustainable way, this needs to become the norm. Let’s not forget also that various non-law enforcement community leaders need to be actively engaged as well. There is mending from this other direction that needs to occur, and really hand-in-hand with that coming out of law enforcement. Together, all people – law enforcement, community leaders, and community members – can create a better life.