Quotes about police work have historically been very popular with Calibre Press newsletter readers. Two compilations from several years ago drew particular attention so we thought we would revisit them.
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First, a dozen of Dave Grossi’s favorites:
“Down these mean streets a man must go who is not himself mean, and who is neither tarnished nor afraid.” —Raymond Chandler
“Wisdom is knowing the right path to take. Integrity is taking it.” —M.H. McKee
“Blessed are the peacekeepers, for they shall be called the children of God.” —Matthew 5:9
“Good people sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” —George Orwell
“I sleep alone, so you can sleep safe.” —An unknown police spouse
“We face what you fear.” —Anonymous
“Evil is powerless if the good are unafraid.” —President Ronald Reagan
“The wicked flee when no man pursueth; but the righteous are bold as a lion.” —Proverbs 28:1
“Bravery is not the absence of fear, but action (the mastery of it) in the face of fear.” —Attributed to 18th Century writer John Berridge
“Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear.” —Ambrose Redmoon, AKA James Neil Hollingworth
“I don’t have to draw a line in the sand. I already have one. It’s thin. It’s blue. It’s mine and if you cross it, I will protect it.” —Anonymous
“Be the type of person that when your feet touch the floor in the morning, the devil says ‘Oh crap … they’re up!’” —Attributed to Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson
Dave concluded his compilation with an inspirational bit of prose, sometimes called “The Policeman’s Prayer,” authored by retired Thibodaux, LA, Police Chief Scott Silverii, Ph.D.
The Final Inspection
The policeman stood and faced his God. Which must always come to pass.
He hoped his shoes were shining just as brightly as his brass.
“Step forward now, policeman. How shall I deal with you? Have you always turned the other cheek? To My church have you been true?”
The policeman squared his shoulders and said, “No, Lord, I guess I ain’t. Because those of us who carry badges can’t always be a saint.
I’ve had to work most Sundays, and at times my talk was rough; and sometimes I’ve been violent, because the streets are awfully tough.
But I never took a penny that wasn’t mine to keep…though I’ve worked a lot of overtime when the bills got just too steep.
And I never passed a cry for help, though at times I shook with fear; and sometimes, God forgive me, I’ve wept unmanly tears.
I know I don’t deserve a place among the people here. They never wanted me around except to calm their fear.
If you’ve a place for me here, Lord, it needn’t be so grand. I never expected or had too much, but if you don’t…I’ll understand.”
There was silence all around the throne where the saints had often trod. As the policeman waited quietly for the judgment of his God.
“Step forward now, policeman, you’ve borne your burdens well. Come walk a beat on Heaven’s streets, you’ve done your time in hell.”
Next, a random collection of additional quotes:
From the book, The Heroes Who Give It All
“The public can choose when they take a call, but when you’re a cop you gotta take ‘em all.”
“Coming home for a citizen is comfort. Coming home for a police officer is success.”
“No citizen worries about crime as much as an officer’s spouse.”
“When business people are faced with the worst they think, ‘How can I save my job?’ When cops are faced with the worst they think, ‘How can I save my life?’
“Law enforcement has the only bond that gets stronger when the pull gets harder.”
“Sometimes the best backup in the world is a loving spouse.”
Cops work for a cause, not applause.
Criminals die breaking the law. Cops die defending it.
“And maybe remind the few, if ill of us they speak, that we are all that stands between the monsters and the weak.” –Michael Marks
If you ever feel like turning in your badge, think back to why you chose to put it on.
Nothing frightens bad men as much as good men willing to stand in their way.
“The duties of an officer are the safety, honor and welfare of your country first; the honor, welfare and comfort of the men in your command second; and the officer’s own ease, comfort and safety last.” —George S. Patton
The badge. It doesn’t weigh much until you put it on.
If something happens to one of us, it’s felt by all of us.
Don’t like cops? The next time you’re in trouble, call a criminal.
A Quaker to an intruder: “I wouldn’t harm you brother, but you’re standing where I am about to shoot.”
Have more quotes to share? Send them on! E-mail us at: firstname.lastname@example.org