In most countries, police officers are perceived to be law enforcers and, this has created a big gap between them and the public. The public see the officers as being antisocial beings that should be feared. People have developed that attitude that they cannot confide in police officers due to the panic of being brought to book even without any specific mistake. Conversely, police officers are humans and, are prone to making mistakes since; no one is perfect (Cools, M. (2010). Therefore, they should not be left out in the development projects in our societies as this lowers their self-esteem thereby; creating the enmity between the public and the officers.
According to Broderick, police officers can be identified by four major types.
The first one is enforcers. The police are supposed to maintain law and order in our communities. Police have the duty of protecting the public from harm by arresting the perpetrators. The criminals have no room in the societies since; they infringe the human rights. The enforcers would, therefore, concern themselves with maintaining law and order but ended up overriding on other issues that ought to be looked into (Conser, J. , Paynich, R., & Gingerich, T. ,2013). The law enforcers are only apprehensive with arresting people whom break the law without being concerned on how it will affect the society and their image in general. The enforcers are supposed to take the law offenders to court but it should not be done before solid evidence has been gathered. They label persons as law breakers.
The other type is idealists. These are the officers who believe in both law enforcement and the rights of the individuals. They are perceived to be better than the enforcers since; they put into consideration the rights that should be respected. However, they develop the attitude of feeling that they are appreciated in the societies and, therefore, will do all what is within their mean to gain respect from the people. They balance between social order and protecting the citizens (Klein, G., 2009). They emerge as being torn between maintaining law and protecting the citizens who they have no power over. They tend to forget that respect is not bought but earned. Due to this, they are constantly at logger heads with the public.
Broderick identified some officers as optimists whose main concern is to protect the people and, enhancing social ties with the public. They perceive the citizens to be friends, therefore, commanding a lot of respect from them. Enforcing law and order become second after protection of the individual rights and freedoms (Cools, M., 2010). They are more conversant with being public servants rather than maintain social order. However, they are prone to be disco0uraged if they do not meet their goals.
The last type was realists who were involved with being more of loyalists and offer mutual support to their fellow police officers. They conflict between maintaining social order and relating with the public. They are never concerned with either of the two hence; less stress and frustration as compared to the rest. They have the perception of not caring and being consistent with anything at all (Abadinsky, H., & Winfree, L., 1992). This type of police view both their duties as being impossible to accomplish thus engage themselves with the things that are easy to come about and less stressing. They are the less affected with social issues and tend to be contented with what they have. They are less likely to get any mental disease.
Conser, J. A., Paynich, R., & Gingerich, T. (2013). Law enforcement in the United States. Burlington, Mass: Jones & Bartlett Learning.
Klein, G. C. (2009). Law and the disordered: An exploration in mental health, law, and politics. Lanham: University Press of America.
Cools, M. (2010). Safety, societal problems and citizens' perceptions: New empirical data, theories, and analyses. Antwerpen: Maklu Uitgevers N.V.
Abadinsky, H., & Winfree, L. T. (1992). Crime & justice: An introduction. Chicago: Nelson-Hall Publishers.