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View Full Version : Enforcing the law purely because it is the law.



Irespire
06-20-2008, 10:20 AM
Right or wrong?

Fëanor
06-20-2008, 10:30 AM
Let's just say I'm glad officers have some discretion.

ComicGuy
06-20-2008, 10:56 AM
Try adding a little more information to your question.

Tucker6900
06-20-2008, 10:57 AM
Right or wrong?

Maybe....

David Hineline
06-20-2008, 12:10 PM
If the officer knows or feels the law is wrong they should not enforce it.

One New Jersey example would be a young man learning firearms safety in the forest with an air powered BB gun not during hunting season, giving them a ticket would be wrong to me.

Name Taken
06-20-2008, 12:40 PM
If the officer knows or feels the law is wrong they should not enforce it.



Ekkkk. I do not know if I like that statement in broad terms. Just because the officer doesnt feel the law is right doesnt mean they should/can ignore it.


Until the SC says Pretextual Contacts/Traffic stops are illegal.....I hope may officers continue to enforce those "pesky" laws.

Group 29
06-20-2008, 12:48 PM
Enforcing the law purely because it is the law.


Right or wrong?


You mean like where someone kills someone else, but like they really deserved it, and arresting the killer for it, just because it is the law?

velobard
06-20-2008, 12:51 PM
Right or wrong?
This really comes across as baiting. You're looking for just black and white in a world full of shades of gray. Let's just say that the law is the law, but I'm grateful that there's a legal definition for the words "justifiable" and "officer discretion".

L-1
06-20-2008, 01:09 PM
Generally speaking, I tried to enforce the philosophy of the law, rather than enforce the law, just because it is the law.

Looker
06-20-2008, 01:33 PM
Let's just say I'm glad officers have some discretion.

+1. Well said for a non - LEO.


If the officer knows or feels the law is wrong they should not enforce it.

-1. That made the hair on the back of my neck stand up.


Generally speaking, I tried to enforce the philosophy of the law, rather than enforce the law, just because it is the law.

In California, it is known as "letter of the law" vs. "spirit of the law." It is actually spelled out in Penal Code section 4.
The following is from http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/.html/pen_table_of_contents.html


4. The rule of the common law, that penal statutes are to be
strictly construed, has no application to this Code. All its
provisions are to be construed according to the fair import of their
terms, with a view to effect its objects and to promote justice.

Fuzz
06-20-2008, 01:45 PM
How do you think the citizens would react if they called for service and I showed up, agreed that an offense was committed, but then told them I would do nothing becasue I didnt agree with the law. And people call about all kinds of laws...muni codes, vehicle codes, penal codes,etc. I havent come across a law yet that I do not agree with (there may be some out there, but it hasnt been an issue). If I feel that a warning will suffice to enforce that law then a warning is given, if I feel further action needs taken then so be it.

Chief Wiggum
06-20-2008, 02:01 PM
My answer is yes.

David Hineline
06-20-2008, 02:23 PM
Alabama — All sodomy acts illegal - affects only unmarried couples.[18][19] Penalty = (1 year/$2,000)

If officers were to follow the outdated law, they would have to arrest every homosexual on sight and arrest any unmarried couple getting a hummer at makeout point.

Some laws can range from improper, to un-constitutional, to damnation in hell for enforcing them.

Officer/judicial discretion is just fine.

PeteBroccolo
06-20-2008, 02:34 PM
Officer discretion is an accepted common-law practice in Canada. Further, many offences, especially committed by Youth Criminals (> 12 < 18 years old) but even by > 18 yoa, are dealt with by alternative measures and similar proceedures.

Nobody going to gaol for littering today! Tomorrow is a whole other situation!!

insomniac
06-20-2008, 02:45 PM
From a non-LE perspective: I'm glad that officers can and do exercise due discretion when it comes to some laws. I don't agree an officer should not enforce a law simply because they do not agree that it is a good law. There is no doubt that there are officers who disagree with marijuana prohibition, certain drinking laws, or any issue that can be politicized. I don't think an officer should turn their back to something because they don't agree with a law, but I think they should use their best judgement in looking at the totality of a situation and deciding what to do (i.e. with a kid with a scrawny MJ plant under a crappy grow light in his closet vs. a "professional" grow operation).

On the other hand, if an officer truly believes a law is unconstitutional and infringes on the rights of others (i.e. sodomy laws) then I have no problem with them acting in good faith to do what they feel is right. I think everyone can drum up images of societies where police, military, and the citizens blindly enforce any and all laws dictated to them. I imagine you had better be prepared to explain yourself very well, though, if you decide to completely ignore a law. Deciding the constiutionality of a law is up to the Supreme Court and not law enforcement officers, after all.

pulicords
06-20-2008, 02:49 PM
Spirit of the law vs letter of the law. It isn't rocket science to apply a little common sense when acting in a law enforcement capacity. I wouldn't cite some kid for giving some of his sandwich bread to a pigeon in the park, but I'd sure as h*** cite the woman dumping multiple 25 pound bags of bird seed on the sidewalk for them and I'd arrest her in a moment when the cite went to warrant!

nogginbuster24
06-20-2008, 03:00 PM
if every law was enforced to the letter the justice system would get so backed up it's not funny. Enforce the laws that do real harm to people and give the people that break secondary laws a warning and everybody would be happy.

Ex Army MP
06-20-2008, 03:14 PM
If the officer knows or feels the law is wrong they should not enforce it.

One New Jersey example would be a young man learning firearms safety in the forest with an air powered BB gun not during hunting season, giving them a ticket would be wrong to me.

That's a rather blanket statement, don't you think?

To me, it all depends on the circumstances. Obviously most of you know when you do and do not have discretion, much like we know which cases we should and shouldn't prosecute. Hypothetically, you get a 19 year old kid with a 15 year old girlfriend, he's living with the girl and her mother, has a job, is responsible, and then gets the girl pregnant. Do we want to charge him with sexual assault, a second degree crime, which carries 5-10 years along with charging the mother with child endangerment?

Now, getting back to the statement David made, if you pull a guy over and you find a pound of heroin, and your personal belief is that all drugs should be legal, do you let him go? Not only won't you but you probably couldn't without facing charges yourself.

Yeah, I suppose if it's something petty where the punishment far exceeds the crime and you could cut an otherwise law abiding citizen a break, you should do it. But that shouldn't be taken as you have full autonomy in deciding which laws are good and which laws are bad.

Seventy2002
06-20-2008, 03:19 PM
Enforcing the law purely because it is the law. Right or wrong?

It's really hard to stay pure out on the street.

JoePublic
06-20-2008, 03:24 PM
I say use your head. All cops I've ever ran into exercise discretion based on their own personal bias ... as they should. :cool:
(So don't hire liberals and the world will be a better place.)

An experienced driver that is really into hot rods does a little harmless burn out on a country road ...
A liberal cop sees this "gas-guzzling, environment-killing law-breaker" doing his "exhibition of power" show and WHAM!! Out comes the ticket book. Site him for everything under the sun comrade.

Then you get a man's man, the conservative, he sees this, it reminds him of his buddies hot rod back in high school and he realizes that the guy is just giving his boys a little show and probably knows better ... no deer were harmed, but it is still a violation of the law ... and a sound law that we all agree with. The conservative cop pulls the guy over, tells him to slow it down and to not do that any more since it's not legal ... they talk cars, they part ways. No big deal.

A guy is burning a joint instead of tires ...

The conservative sees this, WHAM! Out comes the ticket book, if not a trip to jail ... depending whether the liberals or the conservatives run the state and make the law.

The liberal sees this, remembers burning a bunch of joints with his buddies in high school and wishes he could still burn a joint. These people are just having a "good time". The lib walks over, tells them to quit because it's "against the law" and they go their seperate ways after a little lecture. No harm done, other than Johnny the drug dealer who sells these guys weed also sells meth to a lady whom uses and then abuses her life and consequently her children.

I'm just running through straw man scenarios in my head ... I have more. :)

Ex Army MP
06-20-2008, 03:34 PM
Alabama — All sodomy acts illegal - affects only unmarried couples.[18][19] Penalty = (1 year/$2,000)

If officers were to follow the outdated law, they would have to arrest every homosexual on sight and arrest any unmarried couple getting a hummer at makeout point.

Some laws can range from improper, to un-constitutional, to damnation in hell for enforcing them.

Officer/judicial discretion is just fine.

Well then I take you are aware that the above law you cited has since been ruled unconstitutional in the case of Lawrence v. Texas, 539 U.S. 558(2003). Therefore, it's not the best example. Moreover, it isn't unconstitutional at the time of arrest. Once the High Court rules on such a case and it is declared unconstitutional, it will no longer be in the statute book. In other words, you really can't arrest someone for an unconstitutional law.

Ex Army MP
06-20-2008, 03:36 PM
I say use your head. All cops I've ever ran into exercise discretion based on their own personal bias ... as they should. :cool:
(So don't hire liberals and the world will be a better place.)

An experienced driver that is really into hot rods does a little harmless burn out on a country road ...
A liberal cop sees this "gas-guzzling, environment-killing law-breaker" doing his "exhibition of power" show and WHAM!! Out comes the ticket book. Site him for everything under the sun comrade.

Then you get a man's man, the conservative, he sees this, it reminds him of his buddies hot rod back in high school and he realizes that the guy is just giving his boys a little show and probably knows better ... no deer were harmed, but it is still a violation of the law ... and a sound law that we all agree with. The conservative cop pulls the guy over, tells him to slow it down and to not do that any more since it's not legal ... they talk cars, they part ways. No big deal.

A guy is burning a joint instead of tires ...

The conservative sees this, WHAM! Out comes the ticket book, if not a trip to jail ... depending whether the liberals or the conservatives run the state and make the law.

The liberal sees this, remembers burning a bunch of joints with his buddies in high school and wishes he could still burn a joint. These people are just having a "good time". The lib walks over, tells them to quit because it's "against the law" and they go their seperate ways after a little lecture. No harm done, other than Johnny the drug dealer who sells these guys weed also sells meth to a lady whom uses and then abuses her life and consequently her children.

[B]I'm just running through straw man scenarios in my head ... I have more. :)

That's obviously a very short run.

2Adam29
06-20-2008, 05:12 PM
It comes down to integrity I think. I plan to ticket whether I agree with the laws reasoning or not. I don't think it's an officer's place to decide what laws are enforceable and what ones should be ignored. I think only based on severity and liklihood to re-commit should you consider using discretion.

example: guy speeding 15 mph over, gives you lip and talks about how often he does it and never gets pulled over: TICKET
example: lady speeding 25 mph over, is very coutreous and apologetic, and says she was speeding to work because she's never been late before: DISCRETION

just my opinion, but then again, I'm not an LEO. :D

Smurfette_76
06-20-2008, 05:16 PM
Some of those pesky little BS laws are mighty handy when needed to get to the bigger stuff. I have descretion. I use it.

ManInTan
06-21-2008, 04:20 AM
There are laws that I do not enforce really... I mean J-Walking is one of these. If it is truely stupid and has potential to cause or does cause a problem, but if a smart individual crosses the street I simply keep driving

Dingbat
06-21-2008, 05:08 AM
I don't see any seasoned leo enforcing something that isn't going to cause any harm to someone else or that person.

Leos are like parents to society.

They won't spank for going to bed 5 mins past your bed time. But they will for spray panting the gurage door 3 diffrent colors because you got bored.
*cough* first hand example there *cough*

Michigan
06-21-2008, 08:22 AM
Right or wrong?

DISCRETION is everyone's best-friend.

But, if I have to answer either right or wrong... I choose Right.


:rolleyes:

bigislander72
06-21-2008, 08:48 AM
To me, it all depends on the circumstances. Obviously most of you know when you do and do not have discretion, much like we know which cases we should and shouldn't prosecute. Hypothetically, you get a 19 year old kid with a 15 year old girlfriend, he's living with the girl and her mother, has a job, is responsible, and then gets the girl pregnant. Do we want to charge him with sexual assault, a second degree crime, which carries 5-10 years along with charging the mother with child endangerment?

Now, getting back to the statement David made, if you pull a guy over and you find a pound of heroin, and your personal belief is that all drugs should be legal, do you let him go? Not only won't you but you probably couldn't without facing charges yourself.




I say use your head. All cops I've ever ran into exercise discretion based on their own personal bias ... as they should. :cool:
(So don't hire liberals and the world will be a better place.)

An experienced driver that is really into hot rods does a little harmless burn out on a country road ...
A liberal cop sees this "gas-guzzling, environment-killing law-breaker" doing his "exhibition of power" show and WHAM!! Out comes the ticket book. Site him for everything under the sun comrade.

Then you get a man's man, the conservative, he sees this, it reminds him of his buddies hot rod back in high school and he realizes that the guy is just giving his boys a little show and probably knows better ... no deer were harmed, but it is still a violation of the law ... and a sound law that we all agree with. The conservative cop pulls the guy over, tells him to slow it down and to not do that any more since it's not legal ... they talk cars, they part ways. No big deal.

A guy is burning a joint instead of tires ...

The conservative sees this, WHAM! Out comes the ticket book, if not a trip to jail ... depending whether the liberals or the conservatives run the state and make the law.

The liberal sees this, remembers burning a bunch of joints with his buddies in high school and wishes he could still burn a joint. These people are just having a "good time". The lib walks over, tells them to quit because it's "against the law" and they go their seperate ways after a little lecture. No harm done, other than Johnny the drug dealer who sells these guys weed also sells meth to a lady whom uses and then abuses her life and consequently her children.

I'm just running through straw man scenarios in my head ... I have more. :)

Interesting viewpoints. Only difference is both crimes mentioned by Ex-Army are serious felonies(although I dont agree with the first havingto be so, where I grew up, age of consent was 14, none of this ridiculous Romeo and Juliet Sex Offender nonsense). Joe Public's examples are both minor crimes, so I could see an officer letting someone go for that and not getting into much trouble.

Could an officer get in much trouble for not choosing to prosecute the first of Ex's scenarios? Being that it is considered by todays standard a "heinous sex crime" no different than child molestation?

BTW, speaking of liberal and conservative, and being a hot rod enthusiast; the cops where I grew up were quite conservative, and they absolutley had no tolerance for the exhibition of speed thing as they felt it was endangering public safetey and very irresponsible. More likely to let you go for a little pakalolo, thats MJ for all you mainlanders.

Ralph8119
06-21-2008, 01:29 PM
Right or wrong?

It beats working for Burger king!!!:D

SOI
06-21-2008, 05:28 PM
Am I the only one here who immediately thought "This is a marijuana law thread" when they read this? Maybe it's just me but I have a feeling this was going in the direction of "just cuz weed is illegal you guys shouldn't enforce it cuz I like it and it don't hurt nobody".

Looker
06-22-2008, 02:42 AM
example: guy speeding 15 mph over, gives you lip and talks about how often he does it and never gets pulled over: TICKET
example: lady speeding 25 mph over, is very coutreous and apologetic, and says she was speeding to work because she's never been late before: DISCRETION


A little exagerative, I think.

example: guy speeding 15 mph over, gives you lip and talks about how often he does it and never gets pulled over: TICKET. A warning wouldn't teach him anything but to give the next cop lip because he won't get a ticket.

example: lady speeding 25 mph over, is very courteous and apologetic, and says she was speeding to work because she's never been late before: DISCRETION???!!!

NOT discretion. That's not giving her a ticket cause she has nice twins and undid a button to help "persuade" you. 25 over is egregious anywhere. TICKET!! Now...

example: lady speeding 5 - 10 mph over, is very courteous and apologetic, and says she was speeding to work because she's never been late before, she's driving a soccer moms van, and her driving and criminal record are spotless: DISCRETION

One's integrity is not an issue just because he/she used discretion.

L-1
06-22-2008, 03:32 AM
Sometimes folks can be thoughtful in their enforcement, sometimes not.

As an example, in the town I used to live in, parking on my street was prohibited from 8 AM to 12 Noon, once a week for street sweeping. The sweeper came by around 8:30 AM, so if you parked after it had been through, you didn't get a ticket because the purpose of the law was merely to keep the streets clear so the sweeper could do its job. In that town, they enforced the philosophy or intended purpose of the law.

In the town I live in now, parking on my street is also prohibited from 8 AM to 12 Noon, once a week for street sweeping. The sweeper comes by around 8:30 AM. But, even though its been through, if you dare to park there before 12 Noon, they will still cite you. In this case they are enforcing the law just because it is on the books.

Professionally, I prefer the enforcement posture of the first town.

David Hineline
06-22-2008, 04:51 AM
I got my car towed for parking in front of my home on an emergency snow route even though the snow had melted off completely before the snow plows even attempted to come through the neighborhood.

The snow came, evidently the tow notice to move the car was put on the car, I did not notice this, the city never plowed as the snow all melted off the next day, one day later than that the car was missing.

David Hineline
06-22-2008, 05:07 AM
I was parked outside a local hospital on a long hill downward side, just sitting in my car using the phone, a young person with obvious Down's Syndrom was walking down the hill filling parking meters with coins on any cars that were expired, I suppose there is a parking meter officer somewhere who would feel the need to stop this person from helping others and the expense of city parking fines.

lawdog30
06-22-2008, 07:51 AM
If the officer knows or feels the law is wrong they should not enforce it.

One New Jersey example would be a young man learning firearms safety in the forest with an air powered BB gun not during hunting season, giving them a ticket would be wrong to me.

I don't like that statement what if a police officer thinks tha tdrugs should be legal and decides not to enforce the drug laws. What if he doesn't mind people drinking and driving and lets then go with out taking them to jail and they kill someones family or they kill your family. so you need to change either your wording or how you feel about that I believe that all laws have a reason and are justifiable.:mad:

2Adam29
06-22-2008, 09:44 AM
A little exagerative, I think.

example: guy speeding 15 mph over, gives you lip and talks about how often he does it and never gets pulled over: TICKET. A warning wouldn't teach him anything but to give the next cop lip because he won't get a ticket.

example: lady speeding 25 mph over, is very courteous and apologetic, and says she was speeding to work because she's never been late before: DISCRETION???!!!

NOT discretion. That's not giving her a ticket cause she has nice twins and undid a button to help "persuade" you. 25 over is egregious anywhere. TICKET!! Now...

example: lady speeding 5 - 10 mph over, is very courteous and apologetic, and says she was speeding to work because she's never been late before, she's driving a soccer moms van, and her driving and criminal record are spotless: DISCRETION

One's integrity is not an issue just because he/she used discretion.


I;m not great at judging speeds.... 25 would be REALLY fast though wouldn't it?!? lol :D you get my point tho.:)

Group 29
06-22-2008, 10:15 AM
Am I the only one here who immediately thought "This is a marijuana law thread" when they read this? Maybe it's just me but I have a feeling this was going in the direction of "just cuz weed is illegal you guys shouldn't enforce it cuz I like it and it don't hurt nobody".

No, but once you put the "M" word in a post, you will bring them out like flies.

bigislander72
06-22-2008, 10:36 AM
I;m not great at judging speeds.... 25 would be REALLY fast though wouldn't it?!? lol :D you get my point tho.:)

Depends. In CA seems like 80 in a 65(15 over) is fine, thats about the speed everyone drives.

texaschickeee
06-22-2008, 12:10 PM
Let's just say I'm glad officers have some discretion.

+1. there are a lot of laws still on the books that make no since but again... on the books.
Example in Texas........

it is still illegal to have your horse and carriage come into town at night.


How many cops see a horse coming into town.....;)

Looker
06-22-2008, 12:30 PM
I was parked outside a local hospital on a long hill downward side, just sitting in my car using the phone, a young person with obvious Down's Syndrom was walking down the hill filling parking meters with coins on any cars that were expired, I suppose there is a parking meter officer somewhere who would feel the need to stop this person from helping others and the expense of city parking fines.

No they wouldn't.

You seem pretty anti-LE. I would think your time complaining about us would be better spent on another web site with others like you who don't appreciate us.

At least when others like bigislander72 question our motives some times... he exercises his maturity and makes a point, and is respectable in his debate. This post was just spiteful. If I cared, I'd bring admin's attention to some of your recent posts. But I don't, and besides, you'd just register as someone else and continue your disrespectful posting.

You are a troll.

Sarkis
06-22-2008, 12:33 PM
Please do not take this the wrong way, but there are laws that just because they are laws does not make them morally right.

For instance, blacks weren't considered "full humans" many years ago.

Blacks weren't allowed certain places, to drink from certain drinking fountains, to use certain restrooms, etc.

Women were considered "livestock and chattel" in different places, NOT as people.

Those were laws before, were they right?


Speeding, driving recklessly, endangering other peoples lives is wrong AND against the law.

Smoking weed, doing drugs, ruining the image of your community, stealing, taking, robbing and living on welfare to support your marijuana or other drug addiction is wrong, and against the law. <------I had to mention that one so you guys don't think I'm one of those stupid, "Legalize marijuana" advocates.

CityCopDC
06-22-2008, 12:47 PM
If the officer knows or feels the law is wrong they should not enforce it.
I happen to think it should be ok to operate a boat while intoxicated. The law disagree's. See my point?

Ralph8119
06-22-2008, 12:53 PM
The Police don't have the right to interpret the law, our job is too enforce the law whether we agree with the code or not!

rubyrose
06-22-2008, 12:55 PM
Just for fun:

Have you been to jail for justice? (http://www.annefeeney.com/Pages/jailforjustice.html)


Please do not take this the wrong way, but there are laws that just because they are laws does not make them morally right.

For instance, blacks weren't considered "full humans" many years ago.

Blacks weren't allowed certain places, to drink from certain drinking fountains, to use certain restrooms, etc.

Women were considered "livestock and chattel" in different places, NOT as people.

Those were laws before, were they right?


Speeding, driving recklessly, endangering other peoples lives is wrong AND against the law.

Smoking weed, doing drugs, ruining the image of your community, stealing, taking, robbing and living on welfare to support your marijuana or other drug addiction is wrong, and against the law. <------I had to mention that one so you guys don't think I'm one of those stupid, "Legalize marijuana" advocates.

texaschickeee
06-22-2008, 01:43 PM
The Police don't have the right to interpret the law, our job is too enforce the law whether we agree with the code or not!

very true,
and citycopdc- very true.;)

the statement you can't legislate morality.........comes very much into mind.

Sarkis
06-22-2008, 02:55 PM
Nope rubyrose, I've never been to jail for justice.

2Adam29
06-22-2008, 05:59 PM
Depends. In CA seems like 80 in a 65(15 over) is fine, thats about the speed everyone drives.

geez. with that traffic flow you could pull someone over at random and assume they were speeding. :)

David Hineline
06-22-2008, 06:28 PM
I happen to think it should be ok to operate a boat while intoxicated. The law disagree's. See my point?

If you are enforcing a law you do not agree with morally, then you are a hypocryte.

See my point.

If I am doing something in my job that is against my morals then I either do not do that particular task, or I do not do that job.

David Hineline
06-22-2008, 06:30 PM
No they wouldn't.

You seem pretty anti-LE. I would think your time complaining about us would be better spent on another web site with others like you who don't appreciate us.

At least when others like bigislander72 question our motives some times... he exercises his maturity and makes a point, and is respectable in his debate. This post was just spiteful. If I cared, I'd bring admin's attention to some of your recent posts. But I don't, and besides, you'd just register as someone else and continue your disrespectful posting.

You are a troll.


Trolls seldom use thier real name and thier business website in thier profile.

CityCopDC
06-22-2008, 06:32 PM
The Police don't have the right to interpret the law, our job is too enforce the law whether we agree with the code or not! Thats partially correct. Thats why they give us "discretion". Some laws are 70-80 years old. Having sex with your wife in any position OTHER THAN missionary is an arrestable offense. Who is going to enforce that?

Ralph8119
06-22-2008, 06:34 PM
Thats partially correct. Thats why they give us "discretion". Some laws are 70-80 years old. Having sex with your wife in any position OTHER THAN missionary is an arrestable offense. Who is going to enforce that?

My Wife!!:eek:

Man you fell into that one!:D

CityCopDC
06-22-2008, 06:40 PM
If you are enforcing a law you do not agree with morally, then you are a hypocryte.

See my point. Nice try. It USE to be legal to beat your wife, LEGALLY. How am I a hypocrit for arresting a dude who assaulted his wife/girlfriend blah blah. The point you seem to be missing is that its not up to me to decide which laws I WANT to enforce or not. I have a limited scope of things that I can enforce or not (discretion). Pretty much all felonies are off that list.


If I am doing something in my job that is against my morals then I either do not do that particular task, or I do not do that job. You may not want to pursue a career in law enforcement then because you dont have that luxury as an officer. And if you choose NOT to arrest someone for something, if it comes back to bite you, you could be out of a job, or attending a nice civil proceeding. As I stated before, there are laws Im sure alot of officers do not agree with. But they "enforce" those laws, not interpret them.

See my point? :eek:

David Hineline
06-22-2008, 06:55 PM
Nice try. It USE to be legal to beat your wife, LEGALLY. How am I a hypocrit for arresting a dude who assaulted his wife/girlfriend blah blah. The point you seem to be missing is that its not up to me to decide which laws I WANT to enforce or not. I have a limited scope of things that I can enforce or not (discretion). Pretty much all felonies are off that list.

You may not want to pursue a career in law enforcement then because you dont have that luxury as an officer. And if you choose NOT to arrest someone for something, if it comes back to bite you, you could be out of a job, or attending a nice civil proceeding. As I stated before, there are laws Im sure alot of officers do not agree with. But they "enforce" those laws, not interpret them.

See my point? :eek:

I see your point and understand your mindset very well. Luckily we have laws here that let me disagree with you.

2Adam29
06-22-2008, 06:56 PM
Nice try. It USE to be legal to beat your wife, LEGALLY. How am I a hypocrit for arresting a dude who assaulted his wife/girlfriend blah blah. The point you seem to be missing is that its not up to me to decide which laws I WANT to enforce or not. I have a limited scope of things that I can enforce or not (discretion). Pretty much all felonies are off that list.

You may not want to pursue a career in law enforcement then because you dont have that luxury as an officer. And if you choose NOT to arrest someone for something, if it comes back to bite you, you could be out of a job, or attending a nice civil proceeding. As I stated before, there are laws Im sure alot of officers do not agree with. But they "enforce" those laws, not interpret them.

See my point? :eek:

I agree with this sentiment. Which is why it angered me when someone said I shouldn't be a cop if I didn't like the second amendment's interpretation. Point being, I can stay in line without always agreeing with the logic. And the idea that all cops always enforce only the laws they believe in I find ridiculous.

CityCopDC
06-22-2008, 07:01 PM
I see your point and understand your mindset very well. Luckily we have laws here that let me disagree with you.

But of course. ;)

Looker
06-22-2008, 07:30 PM
Trolls seldom use thier real name and thier business website in thier profile.

I posted a private message to you sir. Whenever you have the time.

rubyrose
06-22-2008, 07:32 PM
Neither have I.

Though I could have if someone had bothered to arrest me.


Nope rubyrose, I've never been to jail for justice.

Ralph8119
06-22-2008, 07:52 PM
Neither have I.

Though I could have if someone had bothered to arrest me.

I'll once more share a personal true story in a past post, since you both mentioned not being arrested in the past!


I had quite a few run-ins with police when I was younger. I was cut a lot of breaks so I have decided to take the job, and pass on a few more breaks to others. Some of the breaks I have given has paid off, some not.

Why did I become a police officer? O.k. get this, I can give you all dozens of reasons why but the best was when I was arrested at 15 years old for joy riding in a 1963 Chevy one night in the Bronx and was then brought in cuffs to the police precinct by two very friendly and funny cops, they spoke too me bought me a coke and a sandwich, then BOOKED me!:eek: I went to court the very next day and was given six months to clean my act, which I did;)
I did become a police officer six years later and transfered to the very same pct. I was locked up, Guys the look of the same officers that locked me up seven years earlier was a hallmark moment when they saw me in uniform, we got drunk that night! God Bless Them Both:D

Smurfette_76
06-22-2008, 08:00 PM
If you are enforcing a law you do not agree with morally, then you are a hypocryte.


Why do you assume that we as LE take it personally? What right do I have to NOT enforce a law when it's not me that is the victim. If you've been victimized by someone, would you appreciate me NOT making an arrest because I don't agree with the law because of my own moral beliefs? Who's to say that what I find morally wrong should be the yardstick by which I measure those in society that I come in contact with?

L-1
06-22-2008, 08:04 PM
Depends. In CA seems like 80 in a 65(15 over) is fine, thats about the speed everyone drives.

Under a public records act request, the Orange County Register did an audit of all speeding citations filed with the courts by CHP in Orange County (the next county south of Los Angeles) a couple of years ago. The speed limit on the freeways there is 65 MPH. Of the thousands of citations they went through, they could only find one that was for under 85 MPH.

rubyrose
06-22-2008, 08:08 PM
Ralph, what I was NOT arrested for was being involved in the Sanctuary Movement. I was a very public spokesperson (name and face on tv) for a project that provided refuge for a family from Guatamala where the father would have had to face the death squads for his unionizing activity. We provided sanctuary for about two years. The family now lives in Vancouver.

The project was sponsored by two churches, one of which was mine. The decision do do this was thoroughly thought out, with all the potential consequences considered. The church I was involved with operated on consensus and we spent many long hours considering the spiritual, ethical and practical concerns. We chose unanimously to support the project because we believed it to be in keeping with our religious commitments.

We did this at the same time that numerous Sanctuary Movement workers DID get arrested. We waited for the knock at our doors, but it never came.

I was prepared to go to prison if it came to that. It didn't.

I could have been arrested for one or more of the five joints I smoked in the early 70s, but if I'd had to go to jail for that I wouldn't have considered it "going to jail for justice."

Other than that, there's nothing I could have been arrested for.

ArkansasFan24
06-22-2008, 08:15 PM
Right or wrong?

It's the spirit of the law versus letter of the law scenario. I'm not a "letter" type of guy. Hopefully few are.

rubyrose
06-22-2008, 08:26 PM
The lyrics to the song (you can hear a not-so-good recording of it in the link below)

Was it Cesar Chavez or Rosa Parks that day?
Some say Dr. King or Ghandi
Set them on their way
No matter who your mentors are
It’s pretty plain to see
That if you’ve been to jail for justice
You’re in good company

Chorus:
Have you been to jail for justice?
I want to shake your hand
‘Cause sitting in and lying down
Are ways to take a stand
Have you sung a song for freedom
Or marched that picket line?
Have you been to jail for justice?
Then you’re a friend of mine

You law abiding citizens
Come listen to this song
Laws are made by people
And people can be wrong
Once unions were against the law
But slavery was fine
Women were denied the vote
While children worked the mine
The more you study history
The less you can deny it
A rotten law stays on the books
‘til folks with guts defy it!

Chorus

Well the law is supposed to serve us
And so are the police
When the system fails
It’s up to us to speak our piece
We must be ever vigilant
For justice to prevail
So get courage from your convictions
Let ‘em haul you off to jail!

Chorus



Just for fun:

Have you been to jail for justice? (http://www.annefeeney.com/Pages/jailforjustice.html)

bigislander72
06-22-2008, 09:24 PM
At least when others like bigislander72 question our motives some times... he exercises his maturity and makes a point, and is respectable in his debate.

Well thank you sir:) I appreciate the recognition. Actually I have gotten the troll label myself and even a warning when Tim Dees was still here for being too anti-LE. I try to be respectful even when questioning some issues that most LEs here would agree upon. I guess I am a little to liberal.

I have always been fascinated with the LE field and would love to ask every cop I see all the pesky questions I bring up, but as it has been expressed here, small talk with the general public is not always appreciated. This forum provides the perfect venue.

Believe it or not LE is a field I have always admired and sometimes I even wish I could be one. Unfortunately, I have messed up my life too much(prior drug abuse and criminal convictions) But I can still be a productive citizen as an engineer, so that is what I have done with my life.

bigislander72
06-22-2008, 09:28 PM
Under a public records act request, the Orange County Register did an audit of all speeding citations filed with the courts by CHP in Orange County (the next county south of Los Angeles) a couple of years ago. The speed limit on the freeways there is 65 MPH. Of the thousands of citations they went through, they could only find one that was for under 85 MPH.

Ha ha. Funny story a friend of mine was telling me; He said him and his dad were on the freeway going close to 100. CHP rolls up beside them, says over the loud speaker "Could you please bring it down to 80 or under. Thank you!"

Frank Sector
06-22-2008, 09:59 PM
There is the spirit of the law and there is the letter of the law.

I prefer to enforce the spirit of the law. Since the state, county and city gave me discretion I tend to use it to promote public safety and community relations...blah blah blah.

I am not a fan of the starched shirt "letter of the law" folks. I feel they are dim witted and inflexible and use the letter to cover their lack of judgement and skill.

Then again what do I know?:D

Group 29
06-23-2008, 07:57 AM
If you are enforcing a law you do not agree with morally, then you are a hypocryte.

See my point.

If I am doing something in my job that is against my morals then I either do not do that particular task, or I do not do that job.

Wouldn't it be the other way around? If you become a law enforcement officer, without believing the law should be enforced, and with no intention of doing so with laws you didn't personally agree with, that then you would be a hypocrite?

JoePublic
06-23-2008, 03:13 PM
That's obviously a very short run.

Yeah, my head's so small I watch steroid-sports all evening long, just like I did when I was a twelve year old boy.

ChargerPD
06-23-2008, 09:44 PM
There are laws that I do not enforce really... I mean J-Walking is one of these. If it is truely stupid and has potential to cause or does cause a problem, but if a smart individual crosses the street I simply keep driving

Last time I saw a guy jaywalking, we lit him up to talk to him and ended up taking him in on a felony possession charge. He did it in clear view of a marked police car and in heavy traffic.

Criminals are so stupid.

pfchell
06-25-2008, 09:28 AM
Right or wrong?



you again ? ohh, right.....look at my hands....right or left ? my hands are fast.

sweetcynic
06-26-2008, 02:10 AM
Last time I saw a guy jaywalking, we lit him up to talk to him and ended up taking him in on a felony possession charge. He did it in clear view of a marked police car and in heavy traffic.

Criminals are so stupid.

Isn't jaywalking an example of when discretion is used? As in it would be petty to write someone up for jaywalking in a 25 mph street with no traffic, but not petty to write someone for jaywalking across a 6 lane 50 mph street in such a matter that cars have to slam on their brakes.

pfchell
06-27-2008, 09:45 AM
My Wife!!:eek:

Man you fell into that one!:D

HAHAHAHAHA! you kill me. this is the best one on this forum. :D:D:D