Arnaundville Police Department
The Chief's Blog
The Chief's Blog
The Tide Will Turn
The Tide Will Turn
November 17, 2021
As we enter the holiday season – the season of “giving”, I reflect on the last year as your Chief. It has been a challenging year, both professionally and personally, but because I am a man of faith, I have to believe that my Maker is ultimately in control.
As a Police Chief managing a small rural department, my biggest challenge has been recruiting and retaining quality personnel. Arnaudville suffers the same fate and the same struggles as almost every other law enforcement agency in the country. We must recognize those elements that are impacting our efforts, and fight against some of the negative attitudes and perceptions we get from some of our citizens, from municipal officials, and from within our own ranks. We must acknowledge that there exists leadership that does not have the best interest of our citizens in mind; leadership that often turns its back on the brave and committed men and women who carry the badge and wear the uniform. There are invisible forces behind the scenes who would change the fundamental direction and values we have fought for for generations.
My over two decades serving in law enforcement has obviously been met with moments of challenge – Hurricane Katrina, big city crime, facing the tragedy and sorrow of fallen officers, meeting families of victims, and more – all to be anticipated as a police officer. What I never anticipated was a national movement that vilifies, disregards, dismisses and destroys the lives and livelihoods of decent, honest and hard-working law enforcement officers. A top-to-bottom movement that ultimately results in more crime, more disorder, and more chaos in communities and trauma to innocent citizens. As in every such movement, we always see a course correction, and I am optimistic that we will see the tide turn.
As I reflect on a personal level, I count the many family and friends who have been touched by a global pandemic that left us nowhere to hide and no immunity from devastating loss. My own brother succumbed to Covid-19, as did many of his fellow nursing home residents. Otherwise healthy family members, young and old did not escape the clutches of Covid. Attempting to understand the rationale for restrictions, mandates, and closures left more confusion, division and distrust. Covid took lives, but also took much more from us – our compassion, tolerance, empathy and trust. We are left as cynical, suspicious and mistrustful citizens choosing sides, and isolating and ostracizing those who dare to contradict or question.
But, as we move through all of this, we are left with our faith. Faith that tells us that while we are all on borrowed time, the best is still ahead of us. Life is constantly renewing, evolving and transforming into something better. We only need to wait, because the course will be corrected. The pendulum will swing the other way.
For those who can never see beyond their own selfishness or greed, or who fail to believe life is about giving and not taking, I have pity for them. The misery and hurt they inflict on others will come back to rest on their own souls. For the majority of us, the holiday season - the season of “giving” is but a time when our challenges, our pain and our struggles are overshadowed by the good we can do for others.
Happy Holidays, Arnaudville!
|Posted on April 5, 2014 at 8:05 AM|
Well, today will determine where I am tomorrow. This journey has given me more friends, more memories, and more love for my community. I have had the honor and the pleasure of reconnecting with my past, and my parents' past. In that respect, I have felt that they were with me. I know that they would be proud of me, my approach to this endeavor, and my vision that would bring honor and pride to the town of Arnaudville and its citizens.
At times, the odds seemed against me, but I persevered. Opening each visit with who I am, who my family is, and where I come from was key in establishing trust. Once established, I shared my love for Arnaudville, my vision for its future, and my goals as I took a front seat role in its new beginnings.
As a law enforcement professional, there are many issues I will face, but the most important will be providing Arnaudville with the best protection possible. It may be a cliché', but to protect and serve will be our mission, and every move and every decision will have its foundation in that mission.
Our police will also face a new day tomorrow, maybe with a new leader. While many have ridiculed them, I have concluded that the morale of the department as a whole has suffered over the past few years due to the bad press and the fractured loyalties. Without solid, professional leadership, we can see what happens -- a large turnover, lack of trust in each other, apathy towards the job, and no direction. I pity anyone working in such an environment. I would go into the job knowing that this has to be fixed if we are to provide Arnaudville the kind of protection they want and deserve. The police department is broken. It needs to heal, and this will take time, but it will be worth the wait.
And if I don't have enough votes at the end of the day, I will not shrink back. I will shake it off, and let God lead me to my next "thing". I will continue to find ways that will make a positive impact on Arnaudville.
If you are one who reads my blog, or who has been following my story, or who has been part of it in any way, thank you. I'm sure our paths will cross again.
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