ejstheman asked:

Cognitively, it seems unreasonable to think that cops are generally assholes. Unfortunately, out of some seven times I've dealt with the cops in 27 years, only one time was the cop not an asshole, and he was old and about to retire, so as far as current personnel, I figure the cops are 0 for 6. I'm the first to be wary of anecdotal evidence when someone else presents it, but it's pretty compelling when you collect it yourself. I don't want to be one of those OMG RAEG people who hate cops, but I am. Can you help me?

Do you think that cops in general have the responsibility of being ambassadors for the law? If so, why do so many of them seem to suck at it? Am I just unlucky/a victim of media bias, or have you observed this as well? If you don't think they should be ambassadors, why shouldn't they? You can't watch everybody all the time, and nobody would want to live in that society anyway, so it stands to reason that a legal system that wields moral authority, as well as the threat of force from police, will be more successful at the whole keeping people safe and orderly thing.

Citycop replied:

If your calling me to your house to witness your re-enactment of a recent Jerry Springer show I'll be much more of an asshole than when you catch me out patrolling on a slow day. Some officers are assholes, most of the ones I know are not, however I've seen ALL of them be assholes at certain moments.

I think most officers enjoy the responsibility and they are good ambassadors. Most strive to obey the speed limit and leave a good impression on the public. We all have our moments though. Police officers should strive to be good ambassadors of the law, certainly.

Business Octopus asked:
Which laws do you disagree with? Is there anything currently illegal that you think should be legal? Is there anything currently legal that you think should be illegal?

Citycop replied:

Most of the laws make sense, I don't disagree with them. About the only thing I take issue with is cities that make ordinances against "abandoned vehicles". Basically, in these towns you can't have a car at your house that you don't drive every day. The city can take your classic project car for example.

In Arkansas you can't be pulled over solely for not wearing your seatbelt, I think that's stupid, it should be a real law.

Posts Balls asked:

...And do these opinions affect the way you enforce laws?

Citycop replied:

If I think a law is stupid there is nothing that says I have to enforce it (as long as no one is getting hurt).

Torgman asked:

Have you ever drawn your service weapon on duty? If so, did you use it at that time?

I was told that cops don't draw their service weapons for show, and that if it comes out of the holster, it's gonna get used. Is this really the case, or is it a rumor?

Citycop replied:

It's not uncommon for me to draw my weapon. It's not very often that anyone in the department actually uses one though. I draw it when I clear buildings, or when responding to a disturbance with weapons, or when someone may have a weapon. I've pointed my weapon at people before and told them to get the fuck on the ground, and they did, and that's good for them.

baboon asked:

What do you think about excessive use of force in raids? I mean, all you guys carry guns, so I would imagine a few regular police officers would be able to handle themselves while issuing a warrant, no matter what, and THEN if things got hairy call in the dudes with machine guns.

Citycop replied:

SWAT entry tactics have been developed over many years of trial and error to what they are today. To witness it in action, when done correctly is pretty amazing if you know what is going on. I have been trained in these tactics and I won't be sharing the secrets. The basic idea is that you enter with surprise and overwhelming force. As I'm sure you can imagine if you hear a loud bang and then your staring at a mean fucker with a gun telling you to get on the ground you have no time to react and your only choice is to do what they say. This provides the maximum chance for the safety of everyone involved. SWAT doesn't care if they hurt your feelings, they just want a sucessful raid.

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