Confrontations between law enforcement and civilians are never a welcome thing. During the last year, many of those confrontations have turned violent. Police shootings ignited a public outcry for justice, plus the number of police officers shot and killed stood at 60 fatalities as of Thanksgiving Day 2016, twenty of those being ambush situations. People are dying on both sides.
While the number of shootings dropped over the recent holiday season, the Blue Lives Matter Organization is a voice growing in popularity across America. Understandably, every human life should matter, but it seemed that those who risk their lives to protect others, were not being equally supported. Here's how you can show your support for law enforcement and the Blue Lives Matter initiative.
Understand and Accept
The Blue Lives Matter founding premise is based on the idea that all lives matter. It does not single out any race or gender as more deserving than another. Founded by active and retired law enforcement officers, the immediate goal was to encourage open conversation between everyday citizens and those who have accepted the responsibility of protecting them.
For decades, it has often been deemed amusing to degrade law enforcement officers, showing little respect for people who put their lives on the line everyday. Society's disrespect for police officers has made the profession an easy target for insults, bogus complaints, and trivial legal claims. Over generations, society has evolved towards an eroding and unhealthy disrespect for authority, quickly ready to blame someone else for their actions and the consequences of those actions.
Blue Lives Matter wants to rekindle society's respect for authority. Through an improved understanding of how difficult and dangerous the duty to serve and protect is, the level of acceptance and, therefore, respect for this necessary authority will improve. The organization strives to improve understanding and acceptance through knowledge.
Don't Break the Law
Showing your respect for the law can be accomplished in different ways. One way is to simply obey the laws. Obey traffic laws including speed limits, but most of all stop committing crimes, especially acts of violence that force law enforcement personnel to act. It's not hard to imagine how important every life would become if society were to stop breaking the laws enacted to protect them in the first place.
Voice Your Appreciation
Not every police officer is going to be a jovial person. Just as all normal civilians share personality traits to a diverse degree, so do law enforcement personal. But you can show your appreciation and respect for the arduous job responsibilities they have by simply being friendly.
Say hello, be polite, and tell officers how much you appreciate their service. If citizens will return to a level of respectful courtesy towards law enforcement, the proverbial barriers that have been erected through decades of universally acceptable disrespect will gradually be torn down.
Display Your Respect
Each of the diverse "lives matter" movements have developed slogans and ways you can display appreciation for their cause. If you want to show your support for the Blue Lives Matter organization that specifically supports the lives of law enforcement, you can wear tee shirts, apply bumper stickers to your car, or put Blue Lives Matter vinyl graphics in the windows of your home. Check out retailers like SD Supply for more ideas.
You can sign petitions and donate money to the organization, both visibly and anonymously. Social media has been a voice of public discontent, but you can also use the platform to show your respect for the thousands of good officers that perform their job the right way.
Supporting law enforcement does not mean you automatically support the egregious acts that have been perpetrated by a small percentage of those entrusted with the job to serve and protect. Displaying sincere support for law enforcement does show respect for authority, an eroding sense in our society that needs to be rebuilt.
Rekindling a unified air of respect between police officers and citizens will gradually eliminate the "it's us against them" mentality that is festering in our nation. Blue Lives Matter, Black Lives Matter, Teen Lives Matter, Senior Lives Matter. All Lives Matter.