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SERWAN ZANGANA: Democrats’ Undercutting Police And Public Safety Cannot Be Fixed Quickly

Democrats seriously undermined law enforcement officers during the Black Lives Matter and ANTIFA organizations riots and created a hostile attitude in the public against police and other law enforcement agencies. Democrat politicians abandoned law enforcement personnel to such a degree that many agencies had a major exodus of officers which affected the security of the communities.

It is possible to heal a wound but an amputated part of a body will not be cured. Democrats’ hostility against law enforcement officers has damaged the reputation of the uniformed personnel across the nation and caused major chaos by issuing calls to “Defund the Police” and other law enforcement agencies. Such messages became the main topics of their rhetoric and goals for the past few years.

Many Democrat lawmakers depicted the police as the public enemy. Democrats have drawn a line and stayed on the other side, which gradually retreated from supporting police. Instead of looking for reconciliation and offering positive solutions, Democrat politicians have stoked the anger against police, even though police misconduct in communities is rare.

Obviously, community security is not the major concern under Democrats’ rule, and law enforcement personnel are perceived as unnecessary. Many Democrats believed that defunding the police and diverting the funds to other services in the communities might somehow improve the lifestyles and safety of low-income people, but they were proven wrong and their policies actually hurt low-income people more than any one else because those poorer communities are more prone to crime and thus need more police protection, not less.

Unfortunately, Democrats have created a nightmare and have defiled law enforcement careers. The failure of Democrats to distinguish between real criminal justice reform and “defund the police” slogans has hurt the nation as the anti-police groups began to protest and subsequently triggered riots that resulted in destruction of both public and personal properties. Atlanta was just a recent example of such a tragedy.

It is undeniable that the nation faces a major crisis as the shortage of law enforcement personnel results in an increase in crimes. The Democrat lawmakers are either in denial of the crisis, or they deprioritize the necessity of law enforcement officers in the country.

Southwest Virginia is not immune from such a crisis, and despite the increase of salaries and offering bonuses to new recruits, the police departments and jails, including the regional jails, still struggle with staffing shortages. Roanoke City in particular has an acute officer shortage. As a correction officer, I can personally attest to that. The risk of staffing shortages is affecting many people: the officers, who struggle physically and mentally; people in the community, who will get less or slower police protection; and those inmates behind bars. For example, the staffing shortage of the police departments delays the response to emergency calls and decreases the security in the neighborhoods. Also, the staffing shortage in jails creates extra burdens on the officers, which in turn lowers the performance of their duties and the proper care for incarcerated individuals. Therefore, it is a lose-lose-lose situation.

Most of the politicians, however, are clueless about the agony of the officers, because they are observing the world through the windows of their offices or speaking for the moment to please the public. Moreover, police top brass are not able to descend to the “trenches” with the officers, who are carrying the heavy load more than anyone else in the nation. Police administrators, like the politicians, are unable to share the burden and join the torment.

By being front-line responders, definitely more liabilities are on the officers’ shoulders as they answer to the public, the law, and their departments’ administrators. All this pressure makes them vulnerable.  However, as police chiefs, sheriffs, and jail and prison administrations interacted less and less with the public and inmates, clearly they are less likely to face legal ramifications than officers may.

Overall, it is a dangerous, complicated situation for law enforcement, and the damage that Democrats have caused is so profound, it cannot be solved quickly or easily.

– Serwan Zangana supported Operation Iraqi Freedom as a U.S Army translator before coming to the U.S from Kurdistan, Iraq in 1997 to seek political asylum. He was granted asylum status and years later proudly became a U.S citizen. He currently serves as a correction officer in Roanoke.

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