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Old 12-11-2007, 05:18 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by 85MH325
And, in working for and observing a number of other agencies over my career, I have had the same experience as SilverRanger. Very few enjoyed doing traffic enforcement.


Lewster, when was the last time you saw mass demonstrations about us killing 40,000 of our own friends, neighbors, and family members with hundreds of thousands more injured annually?

Until there is that kind of ground swell support for greater traffic safety, do you really think that legislators are going out on a limb to tell significant numbers of voters that they're probably not going to be able to pass a driving skills test? I suspect that if we'd each spent half on drivers education what we each spend on auto sticker price to buy techno-solutions to crash safety, we'd have much safer highways and cars would cost half as much.

It's apparent, just from some of the posts in this thread that people love speed, and merely that they're breaking the law isn't sufficient to stop them. So, there are several parts to finding a solution: first is to not only cite or arrest the offender, but permanently seize the vehicle driven by anyone who violates the law in "x" degree, or who is unlicensed. That takes the ability of someone without a license away unless they steal a car. Folks who have cars will think twice about loaning them. Second is to make a driver actually prove their competence in order to get a driver's license. Third is to install nation-wide mass transit to take pressure off the highway system.

Our society, particularly as it relates to traffic laws is becoming seriously more and more lawless. Law enforcement alone can't force a society to conform, the society must be willing to live under it's own laws. When that society largely begins to refuse to do that, for whatever reason, anarchy reigns, and the innocent and still law-abiding people begin to suffer at the hands of the lawless.

I'm appalled at the numbers of our citizens who believe that traffic laws only apply to everyone else, but not them. "I don't like the law, so I don't have to follow it" seems to be a pretty common theme.

Roger
Roger,

I'm with ya on this. You have the the problems nailed and coming from your background, you have a unique understanding of these problems and solutions....ie: more mass transit. And I don't really have a problem with paying a fine for getting caught breaking the law, as in a speeding ticket. It's the unjust and uneven enforcement that riles me more than anything.

Unfortunately, other jurisdictions just don't have the same attitude that you have toward law enforcement.
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Old 12-11-2007, 08:02 PM   #44
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Somebody hit a sore-spot!
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Old 12-12-2007, 12:32 PM   #45
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Originally Posted by ckeysor
I am only responding to this because of the policeman that responded above. Formally I lived 1/2 mile from a police precinct and the largest complaint in the neighborhood was that the police were the only ones speeding! Even through the neighborhood association we couldn't get the police to listen. Even though it was a transitional neighborhood in Atlanta I think we would rather have the police station close for our safety!

My own experience is that police fall in 3 groups:

-ex-military
-legacy police officers that have a calling
-people on a power trip

I sleep well at night because of the first two, they are a real asset to our security. It is the third that scare me.

However... isn't this an odd subject to discuss on the Airforums? We simply should not be driving over the speed limit
I wish it was as easy to "classify" police officers as to put them into only three groups. When a policeman gets caught doing that (profiling) it's front page news. We're like everyone else who has any other job. People who do it well, for what ever reason, and those who don't. Same for doctors, lawyers, teachers, and the person who builds your Big Mack. What classification do we put them in? Sorry to say, traffic enforcement comes with the Law Enforcement job classification. Not something we all enjoy, but something we all have to do.
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Old 12-12-2007, 03:24 PM   #46
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Then you have cops that are just plain stupid.
My wife and I went to Ft. Stewart to pick up my son's car before he deployed to Iraq. Coming home, thru Alabama, I was leading, doing the limit at 55..backed up by five satellites on the gps ground speed readout. This 'bubba' state policeman pulls over my wife (directly behind me at a safe distance). (I had been passed by a similar looking vehicle to my wife's car just seconds before) Bubba Begins to write a ticket for 87mph. She nicely tells him..no way and hands him her MS drivers license...his response was, 'Why don't you have an Alabama license like your car tag. She said, the car tags are from MS.....DUH. bubba stopped the wrong car and couldn't admit it. Ticket for $125. I emailed bubba's boss and explained the situation. you guessed it...no response from another stupid cop. just be careful in Alabama...you can't win.

Please, do not give me a hard time for being down on these two morons. My daughter is a deputy sheriff and my older brother has been in law enforcement all his life. I know a dumb cop when I meet one.
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Old 12-12-2007, 04:24 PM   #47
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Out here in the boonies, the small towns and counties can't afford to pay police very much. The decent ones (maybe the less bad ones, I don't know) soon leave as they get a little experience for better pay. The bad ones who can't get a job where there are high standards come here and become police chief or sheriff. You get what you pay for.

When someone shot a few holes through my mailbox last spring and the trajectory showed it came from an old guy across the road—a guy infamous as a problem—I couldn't get a sheriff's deputy to even come and look at it although he promised to. Old guy died last September, the ultimate solution. My point, this is the quality of policing around here.

These are the kind of people who love their speed guns and love the revenue that will get them more cops, new cars, more toys. I've known decent cops, but they seem to be fewer of them than there used to be.

Gene
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Old 12-12-2007, 05:09 PM   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrawfordGene
I've known decent cops, but they seem to be fewer of them than there used to be.

Gene
Gene, we hire our cops from the general public. They're the best folks we can get to do the job for the money we can pay. My officers and the department that they form are the best that there are, bar none. They're intelligent, hard working, and they care. But, I know that not to be the case everywhere. I think there are just fewer decent people than there used to be.

Roger
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Old 12-12-2007, 07:12 PM   #49
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Here is my observation on this subject, at least based on what I have seen personally:

In WV, state troopers are required to have a four year college degree. While this alone may not mean they're super smart, it does, in my ever humble opinion, at least prove the guys are willing to commit and stick it out long enough to get a degree, which at least says they're dedicated people. All of the WV troopers I have ever met have been very even tempered, polite, and professional guys. They may have given me a ticket, but they were good about it. I could never hold a thing against them.

Now our local guys are hired from wherever they can dredge them up. High school is a plus but not required. I remember one of the biggest pot head losers from junior high (I don't think he ever graduated...at least not with the class he started with) becoming a deputy. This guy should have been behind bars, not out harassing people.

The last ticket I got was from some punk 22 year old local kid. I was on a road following an out of state guy who had to be drunk, weaving all over, and throwing stuff out the window at me. Finally we came to one of those two lanes up the mountain get around the dump truck places. We had been going 40mph in a 55mph zone for the past 11 miles. I pulled up to pass him. I was probably going 50mph when I got beside him. Guy gets mad that I'm passing him and tries to throw his lit cigarette at me. Of course it bounced off my passenger window. Anyway, I get around the guy as I was already accelerating when he tried to prevent me from getting around him. I get around the goob and I MAY have been going 65, maybe. I was going up hill in a clapped out 94 Chevy Cavalier 4-cylinder with 130,000 miles on it. I look up and here comes a blue crown vic. Copper turns his lights on. I had a Passport, which is a very good radar detector. not because I'm a professional speeder, but because tickets are big business in smalltown WV and I view it as protection. The detector never went off. Copper pulls me over. I hop out and tell him "That guy is drunk, he has been throwing stuff at me for 11 miles, he's been weaving all over. I was trying to get away from him! Go pull him over and I will follow you!"

(I should interject here that I'm an electronics nut ,and I looked very closely at the guys cruiser....I saw no radar equipment of any kind. None. I walked right back to his car and looked in the window...)

Officer Smedly had no interest whatsoever in apprehending the drunken road rage guy. Rather, he said he clocked me going 78mph in a 55 (my car won't even go 78!!), but he was going to do me a favor and not make it wreckless, just super speeding or something. 5 points instead of 6. Gee thanks. Guess what, my car won't even go 78, much less up a hill!

So the drunk got away and I got hammered. I paid a lawyer and beat it down to 2 points because the DA was a reasonable man and actually listened to what I had to say, but it still cost me a bundle.

Yes, you do indeed get what you pay for.
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