The recent pandemic has now been overshadowed by a killing, racial protests and riots.
Police Officers in this country have come under attack.
A recent TV crawl indicated that “FBI fears violent elements are scouting ways to attack police officers at their homes.” A news reporter’s story went into more depth adding that police home addresses were possibly being obtained through public records or other information readily available on the internet.
I can’t help but wonder, how do they like it now?
A title of police officer, a label that makes someone a target. It doesn’t matter if you’re one of the “good guys”. Violent elements wanting to do harm can easily obtain personal information, home addresses, with a simple internet search. Your life and that of your family now feel jeopardized, all because of the broad, all- encompassing label, police officer, cop.
This is what the broad “sex offender” label does to registrants every day. The moment they are accused of an offense, they are labeled. They are no longer an individual with an individual offense, with individual circumstances. Instead, they are all seen as the same. The media labels them, other prison inmates will label them and once free, out in society, there is still no “break” from the label or the dire consequences that come with it. For registrants, the broad, paintbrush, negative connotation label of “sex offender” is daily life and it doesn’t matter if you are non-violent or predatory, juvenile or adult. It is a one-size-fits-all label. The same as police officer.
There’s no doubt that being a police officer is a risky job. But how will police officers fare when they, good and bad, become targets of evil-doers, purely because of their title, their label? How will they feel knowing that not only they, but their families, anyone in their homes, may now be at risk?
It’s not a good feeling.
New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker is currently working on a National Registry of Misconduct for police officers, but is that what this country needs, another registry?
We’ve all seen how ineffective the “sex offender” registry has been at achieving anything. It never served its initial purpose of monitoring violent, predatory offenders. It morphed into an uncontrollable monster, different in every state, often with frequent changes that were devised for no purpose other than “political gain”. It has over-reached the boundaries of anything resembling any kind of sanity. The only thing the registry ever achieved was ruining lives, emotionally and financially devastating families and getting people killed.
Is that what we’re aiming for in this country? More of that?
It’s time for government officials to learn from the horrible failure of the Sex Offender Registry.
Another registry that serves to publicly punish and humiliate yet another group of individuals, can only do more harm than good for us as a society.