Dress the part

I want community policing: friendly, generally nonthreatening cops we get to know, who look out for all of us and protect us yet who respect the rights of the accused; whose loyalties lie with society and law and not with the “brothers in blue.” Officers should be visible and identifiab le, and not intimidating.

I confess a perverse admiration for the potent, stinging black-and-white design of Idaho State Police cars. But “black and white,” at best, represents old-fashioned, knocking-heads policing. And at worst, it represents the racial injustice so apparent today.

Want community policing? De-militarization is not enough. The police must be emasculated as well — easily accomplished with a simple change in color for uniforms and cars. Checkerboard bright blue and yellow cars and uniforms (as used by the British) will do both.

Imagine the sudden humility of the Moscow police officer, today strutting in matte black, forced to don the yellow and blue. One can feel almost sympathetic.

Add a visible number patch (again as used by the British) and the officer is identifiable as well.

By the way, what’s with the stealth dark gray and black Latah County cruisers?

Why is the sheriff hiding his deputies?

Gary Peterson


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