No More Monsters In The Closet

“We Hunt The Evil You Pretend Doesn’t Exist” I recently spent some time with a good friend who is a LEO and SWAT operator. He proudly wore a shirt with this phrase on the back. He is a true warrior driven by honor and duty. As we exchanged war stories and honed our skills in the event either of us was attacked by empty aluminum cans, I began to think about the work of the modern LEO. Aren’t LEOs really modern day dragon slayers?

As a kid, we had Dracula, Frankenstein, and Wolfman to deal with. Later came hockey mask sporting supernatural and generally irritable villains. However, when you got past the special effects, the bad 80’s era blood, and the horrific acting, they were more or less entertaining. Not so with the present monsters LEOs face.

I’ve reviewed hundreds of video of LEOs shot, killed, and winning deadly force encounters. They are all far more frightening than anything from the minds of Wes Craven or Stephen King. This past week, I watched video of a Cobb County Police Officer being shot during a traffic stop in February 2014. He was struck multiple times. By the grace of God, he is still alive and on duty. His attacker was just sentenced to 105 years.

In this case, the monster is locked away forever and the hero walked away. However, that is not always the case.

The older I get, and the more I respond to officer involved shootings, the more I reflect on those bad horror movies and the fear they instilled in my young mind. I reflect how silly it is to fear a badly dressed guy with long, funky fingernails or any other Hollywood created evil. For the evil that is real, on the street, and facing every LEO every day is exponentially more frightening.

The difference between the movie evil and the real villains is that LEOs know the latter exist-and they go to work anyway. In fact, most LEOs spend each shift seeking those evil forces. They put themselves between the evil and the public they protect, a public that is often ignorant or in denial of those dangers. All in the name of an oath, they keep the monsters in the closet and locked in the basement so that strangers can enjoy a better, safer life. For that reason alone, we need them out there well-trained, well-armed, and well-supported as they hunt the evil people pretend doesn’t exist.

Collectively, we also owe all of them a debt of gratitude. For if they ceased their efforts, the creatures we feared as children would very well enter our bedrooms during the night.  Stay safe.

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