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Leadership and Rotten Apples

July 28, 2016 , , , ,



The theories used to administer law enforcement agencies have changed with the times.  The current political climate demands a thorough examination of the criminal justice system from top to bottom.  The DOJ’s 21st Century Guidelines are a step in the right idealistic direction.  Much thought has been put into the basic “pillars” of law enforcement best practices.  The country seems to be more divided each day on the subject of police relationships with the public.  Some paint the entire force as rotten based on the criminal behavior now available for broadcast to the world.  Others advocate for support for the cops no matter what they are doing. The second group always refers to a few rotten apples, but they never mention the rest of the proverb…a few rotten apples spoil the whole barrel.  Staying with the fruit analogy, I think it is the responsibility of the administrators of cities to responsibly go through the barrels on a regular basis to assure that the law enforcement culture is not rotten.

The war on drugs has not only given us an opiate addicted society, but also great opportunity for the most common kinds of corruption to flourish.  Arizona is a wild west state famous for “conservative” law enforcement, al estilo de Joe Arpaio.  Indeed, Arizona has had some famous historical stand offs around law and order. The Gunfight at the OK Corral was exactly that. Doc and Wyatt are symbols of everything we love about Tombstone and the legends too tough to die.  After the Earps and Doc shot the Clantons they high tailed it to Tucson, and the rest is history.  The Arizona Rangers were founded in Tombstone during the Territory days, and still have a proud tradition, although today they are a volunteer organization. It is a serious challenge to maintain the proud traditions and, at the same time, be vigilant of corruption.  It is not a black and white question.

How do you feel, gentle reader?  Do you think there is a problem with individual cops, or with the leadership?  Or do you feel everything is going well with the criminal justice system right now?

Ranger history

Ranger history

Doc and Wyatt

Doc and Wyatt

What do you think?

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Wow! Great commentary! I think there are great cops and terrible cops. I think corruption is more prevalent than most know or they ignore it. I think that there needs to be some sanctions for cops who turn off their body cams before they shoot someone….. and I think that shooting anyone in the back is wrong -regardless what they are carrying or if they are running away.


Stevie Wilson (@LAStory)

August 8, 2016

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