Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The shaming of the police

JuliaM on Ambush Predator reminds me of the story of the family left to burn to death while police prevented would-be rescuers from trying to help.

As I was travelling between clients yesterday I heard a lot of comments from so-called "experts" on the Jeremy Vine show claiming that the police were acting correctly by stopping people from going in to help as "untrained" people have no idea what they are getting into and could have ended up dead themselves.

This is a very stupid thing to say as very few of us are aware of what we are getting into when faced with a life-threatening situation. The thing is, those people who the police were stopping were adults capable of making their own decisions - and like any decent minded adult they were not prepared to stand by when children's lives were at stake.

Personally, I consider that those people were prepared to risk their own lives to try and save those kids something to be proud of - they can all hold their heads up high - but I find the behaviour of the police utterly reprehensible. Once upon a time the police would have been the first ones in there leading the rescue attempt - now they are prepared to sit and watch children burn to death. Worse still, they'll stop anyone else trying to save them!

As a father and an adult I believe it is the responsibility of EVERY adult to put themselves in harms way when the lives of children are at stake. To sit by and do nothing while children die in front of you is disgraceful and the police today should be hanging their heads in shame.


JuliaM said...

I like Jeremy Vine, often listen to him in the office, but I had to stop listening to that one yesterday.

Otherwise I think my colleagues would have had to call an ambulance for me...

"Once upon a time the police would have been the first ones in there leading the rescue attempt..."

Indeed. And that's the really sad thing, isn't it? Back 20 years or so ago, no-one would have thought twice about seeing a couple of policemen dash into a burning building. It wouldn't ve considered out of the ordinary.

Perhaps the public started losing faith in the police when the police started losing faith in themselves?

Stan said...

The public started losing faith with the police when the police gave up Peelian Principles ....

#7 Police, at all times, should maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and the public are the police; the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties which are incumbent upon every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence