To protect and to serve all of us

Growing up our parents would have never thought to disrespect authority, especially law enforcement. 

When we were young children, we were raised to have respect for our elders and people serving in law enforcement jobs. They were our mentors and we learned life’s lessons from them.

But times have changed and violence against police officers is on the rise. We now live in a world where name calling and violence against law enforcement officers are common occurrences in our society.

What happened to respect that previous generations had?

Each day, thousands of law enforcement officers in Pennsylvania put on a uniform and set out to protect us. Hostility toward law enforcement yields real danger and fosters violence.

Currently, there is not a law in Pennsylvania specifically aimed at prosecuting those who incite violence against police.

My legislation, H.B. 540, would establish an offense of a third-degree felony against a person who is violent against one or more law enforcement officers in Pennsylvania.

Law enforcement officers risk their lives every day to protect and serve us and to ensure safety for all. Law enforcement officers also have been increasingly under fire because of the job they hold.

When you harm a police officer it is already a crime under federal law, and my proposed legislation would make it a state crime as well.

Police officers hug their families before heading out the door and risk the possibility of not coming back home that night. Police officers risk their lives every day and go out of their way to protect strangers.

Instead of bashing them, we should respect and support them. They are the people we call whenever emergencies occur, who protect us in terrible situations. We need to stand alongside them and give them the support they need.

In most aspects of life, respect must be earned. People are judged and judge others based on merits, achievement and specific qualities.

Law enforcement officers are not infallible. They are not better people than the rest of us. Authority and respect must be earned by an individual. But collectively, we should enter these relationships with mutual respect.

A vast majority of law enforcement officials are good people who have citizens’ best interests at heart.

My bill would show that we respect and appreciate their everyday efforts. Let’s protect our police.