Our Toughest Challenge is Coming

By David Magnusson  |   Oct 12, 2020

Law enforcement has been on its heels much of 2020.  A lot has changed, and a lot more will change moving forward.  It all matters, regardless who holds the megaphone but perhaps what may matter most is but a few weeks away.

As I switch from my law enforcement 8-point cover to my historian cap, I recall that we’ve had 45 presidents (44 men, to be exact, since Grover Cleveland won two non-consecutive terms). 

I mention this because in the previous 58 presidential elections, some of which were tumultuous, none come near to what may take place after November 3, 2020 if some of the reports are correct.  We hear threats of discontent and violence from both sides of the lunatic fringe should their candidate lose.  False bravado?  Perhaps.  But once more, we will be thrust into a maelstrom during which we’ll be looking to maintain order, protect the United States Constitution, as we swore to do, and ensure that people can still exercise their given right to peacefully protest.

We must maintain our neutrality as police officers and stand true to our oaths to duty in what may very well be the toughest of times, for it will be this thin blue line that will stop what may well be an assault on our very way of life.  Our professionalism must soar to new heights and our personal opinions must be silenced until we go home and remove our uniforms.

People will look to us for help, protection and guidance, as they always do when they are fearful.  Quite frankly, I am fearful too.  We all should be.  This nation is rife with intense personal and political fragmentation— compounded by the pressures of a horrific, once-in-a century, pandemic— that may crack like the ground during an earthquake.

Between now and Election Day, grab a copy of the U.S. Constitution.  Read through it.  Think deeply about what it truly stands for and then be prepared to protect it with your every fiber.  This will be our toughest challenge. I believe United States law enforcement will come through it with flying colors.

None of us were drafted.  We all enlisted.

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David Magnusson

Magnusson is the chief of police for the Village of El Portal Police department. Prior to this, he was police chief of the Havelock (N.C.) Police Department. He also spent 30 years with the Miami Police Department, retiring there as a major. Magnusson is a graduate of American Military University with a Master's in Military history. Chief Magnusson also boxed as an amateur for twenty-six years. You will find his passion for history and boxing in many of his writings. Magnusson and his wife Rosa reside in South Florida, where they have five children and two grandkids.

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