Re: “Parents upset over park incident,” by Brian Goff, Belleair Bee, June 27 Editor: I would like to first say that I agree with the parents. I have lived in Indian Rocks Beach for three years now. I have had several encounters with local law enforcement and most, not all, of them have what I like to call “The Barney Fife Syndrome.” A small town cop with a nasty attitude and a control problem that picks on the “locals” because there is nothing better to do. In other words, those of us who attempt to help the local cops.
I am a nurse of 30 years. I have encountered every kind of personality from the sweetest granny to prison inmates who have committed murder. No matter what your job, no matter what you do, respect is earned. That goes for cops and city officials, too. You don’t get my respect because you have a badge or a title. And please do not try to instill fear in me with your big, bad look and voice. Seriously? I think that because policemen and women and city officials have to assume some kind of authoritative persona to get the job done, they morph into this higher than mighty power that has a free ticket to talk to everyone like a guilty little child.
I pay taxes. I work. I take care of people. I don’t commit crimes. I am a grown adult. I raised good kids. I call the police and report things I believe are suspicious. I respect the profession because they do not get paid enough to risk life. I have assisted the local police in trying to keep IRB safe. Never once did I hear a thank you. They are so condescending and thankless. Sometimes, police officers become jaded and adopt the “justice system mentality” – everyone is guilty until proven innocent. I hope these attitude issues are truly investigated but I don’t hold much faith in that. Rarely do you truly see the police throw one of their own under the bus.
In the nursing field, we have a term called P.R.N. It means “as needed.”
For example, if my patient has a headache he can have Tylenol P.R.N. for pain. I think that the average citizen should be able to administer a small dose of cattle prod P.R.N. to unnecessarily rude officials. A mini-prod – just a little zappp – nothing life threatening – just a little wake up call, if you will. And once you are awake, I will have your full attention to ask you: Did your mother ever teach you manners? How to treat your customers? You get my respect when you earn it. And I expect nothing less from you.
I am from Kentucky. We are nice there. We look out for and help one another. We appreciate a smile and a helping hand. It’s a shame that rarely happens with the leaders and cops of IRB. And, just for the record, who do these city officials and representatives think pay their paychecks.