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I'm not an officer but I've known a few.I'm an avid clay shooter so it was bound to happen over the years.I'm writing to say that it breaks my heart when I think about how under appreciated you guys are by the general public.Watching Ken Burn's "The War"it struck me the same way to hear a veteran, even back then, lamenting how his sacrifice was not understood in a way that should've inspired more gratitude.As rewarding as the job is when you're a service to those in need and a force for order, not to mention being a part of a society of MEN in an ever increasing world of "soft males" to quote Robert Bly the author,it's not enough.You certainly deserve more.From a sympathetic civilian's perspective what people focus on when they see you on the street is someone who has the authority and power to hold them accountable for their actions.This obvious distinction, compared to firemen for example, might explain why they don't experience the 'heat' you do.In an increasingly technological society that causes isolation there's less need for pragmatic dependency on community and therefore less accountability.And yet, though an individual can live alone, drive to work alone,acquire and prepare food alone,work in a cubicle away from home or at home behind a computer alone we're social creatures, driven to seek one another out.Unfortunately a person can too easily sidestep the need to develop and maintain a character with integrity by simply moving.In short order an individual can get a new wife,job,friends and neighborhood.The worst opportunist of this are serial killers who are estimated to number around 50 countrywide at any given time. Just be assured fellas that there's a significant percentage of the population that are really behind you.We rage inwardly when less than honorable people,often driven by lawyers promising financial gain,persecute you - making mountains out of molehills.Personally I have a profound admiration,respect even envy for your very special community.Keep up the great work and a heartfelt thanks.Bless you all.
submitted 10.09.07

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