Some people complain about law enforcement — especially when they are caught doing things they shouldn’t be doing.
Granted, not all law enforcement officials are perfect. In fact, we can name a few instances in which they have acted in very questionable ways: The sharing of photos from the crash scene in which Kobe Bryant died, the beating of Rodney King and more recently the George Floyd killing; the lack of transparency when it comes to handing over public records that the media requests …
Yes, sometimes it’s easy to criticize what law enforcement is doing, but what would happen if we didn’t have them? That’s a question we asked last week for our “Have Your Say” poll. More specifically, the question was: “Do you think the cities of Lancaster and Palmdale should cancel their contracts with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department?”
We received a total of 59 calls and the answer was a resounding “no.” However, we did have a couple of callers that thought it would be a good idea.
It’s not so easy to say we should get rid of the Sheriff’s Department. Who would take over? Surely, those two who think it’s a good idea to cancel the contracts don’t think we can go without some type of law enforcement agency? For all the bad things we hear about law enforcement in general, there are myriad good things we don’t hear.
Not every cop is a bad one, but as the saying goes, “one bad apple spoils the whole bunch,” so we tend to focus on those who have done questionable things or broken the law, themselves. As a newspaper, we try to focus on the good things that our local law enforcement agency does, whether it’s their Coffee with a Captain outreach efforts, or distributing toys to children during the holidays or just taking a dangerous criminal off the streets. We think it’s important for the community to know that deputies are doing good things in the Antelope Valley, too.
Those with the harshest criticism are sometimes not the most innocent. That’s not to say that all who criticize law enforcement are criminals, but in some instances, they’ve had their brushes with the law. Or perhaps it was a friend or family member who did.
We can’t just get rid of law enforcement. We need them. Without them, it would be like the wild West.