Sorry, XD-Fender, but I think that you have been in the job too long to have an unbiased view.
I spent three years in a metro police department in PA. Not only did I experience the culture in my department, but I had the opportunity to do some work with several different departments, large and small, across the state. When it comes down to brass tacks, there is no escaping the fact that the "cop culture" in this country (maybe all countries; I don't know), is downright unpatriotic and unAmerican.
I think you've got it exactly backwards--you weren't on the job long enough and your experience is far too limited to make you an unbiased critic. I've worked with literally dozens of LE agencies and hundreds of LEOs for 20+ years. I humbly suggest that my experience is significantly broader than yours. Three years with one large metro LE agency hardly qualifies you to generalize about LE across the board.
I notice you didn't express a distaste for their actions, just for the fact that they give other LEO a bad name. Perhaps other LEO should insist they obey the law they swore to uphold. Mere citizens don't get to meet ALL LEOs, we have to go by our experience, for many of us it is less than reassuring.As a former LEO, I too have a keen distaste for those LEO's (captured on camera or by the press) who get ALL LEO's painted with the same brush.
Pretty typical defense of police misconduct. One big problem is that truck drivers don't have the power LEO have to abuse mere citizens.Not all cops are idiots with chips on their shoulders, just as not every truck driver is a perverted, foul-mouthed porn-addicted slob. It's simply unfair and unfortunate that a couple controversial videos of a few 'bad apples' gets the whole community portrayed as out of control. It's simply not true. Just as one psycho with a gun and a hit list is NOT a fair representation of all gun owners.
Okay, how large a percentage did they represent. I've come to suspect it's significantly larger than the traditional 2% often quoted. BTW, what is an acceptable percentage?My experience on the job afforded me to see some bad apples in action, but they didn't represent the entire agency or career field.
How many of us have knowledge of situations which prove that this is not necessarily the case. I know, actually personally know, a cop who was selling drugs but is still working as a cop. I know, actually personally know, a cop who had multiple felony DUI that went away just because he agreed to resign: I believe he should have been fired and prosecuted. Now you can respond about "meaningless anecdotes" but again, I only have my experience in life to judge those 'snow-pure LEO' of yours.However, with the possible exception of clergy and (some) politiicans, LEO's are held to a standard civilians generally are not. Case and point: if Joe Snuffy from the Sheet Metal plant gets pulled over for DUI, or gets busted for ANYthing... it's not necessarily 'front page news.' Let Officer Joe Snuffy get busted and it's all over the press.
This last section of your post I wholly agree with. I just wish I wasn't so discouraged by my experience with LEO that I could actually believe you...I never have and never will condone or conceal LEO's illegal behavior or activity on or off the job. Criminal is criminal. (Ted Kennedy and bHo are NO EXCEPTION.) But I do have tremendous respect for those LEO's who go out into harms way and do a cruddy job as well as they can, dealing with idiots and psychos and drunks that I will never miss dealing with.