Explorations in Policing, Faith and Life (With a hint of humor, product reviews, news and whatever catches my attention)

Friday, November 30, 2007


I was reading the newspaper today and I was struck by an English graffiti artist named "Banksy". His real identity is know only to a few and he still goes out to commit his public/illicit art. His works are now being sold in galleries for hundreds of thousands of dollars. I have viewed a number of his works and I really like what he does.

I was struck by two things. First there still is a mechanism in society in which someone by their own hand can propel themselves into success. Second that few people appreciate how the police tend to get pulled into the middle and blamed by both sides of an issue. I was struck by the comments of those who supported Banksy's artistic vision in that they decried police involvement in removing and investigating his graffiti and a group against his public vandalism complaining against the police because they are not enforcing the laws that are already on the books.

Look if you support an issue and it is against the law-get the law changed. We (the PO) can not enforce something that is not there. Second if you do not think we are doing enough about another issue then come to your local station and ask how you can help. What I see is two groups of people on either side of an issue sitting on their pimply backsides doing nothing but complaining. And we the police, who are doing something, interesting for both groups, is main entity being blamed, not the artist, not the building owners, not the gallery owners etc.

In support of doing something about what you believe in I am formally inviting Banksy to come to my house in Chicago and paint whatever strikes him on my detached garage. E-mail me Bansky ummmmmm remember I do have little children.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

God's Hand

I have asked and have heard many others ask when events or personal situations take a downturn, "Where is God's Hand in this? Why do I not see him moving?"

The world is an incredibly interconnected place. The idea that when a butterfly flaps it wings in Mexico creates a chain of events that eventually lead to a typhoon in Singapore is true. I have a hard time understanding and recognizing the fulfillment of Gods plan because I can only envision cause and effect as separate incidents and God being Omnipresent and Omnipotent can see then all at the same time and secondly, Gods does not have to take huge macro-steps to get things done. So take hart God is making the tiniest of changes that will great the greatest effect for you and me.

Ephesians 1:11
In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will,

As a case in point here is a Article from John Kass that brought this thought into my head:
Daley up to his gills in diplomatic mess
John Kass
November 28, 2007

Because of a humble gift given to him by the Daleys of Chicago almost 50 years ago, Emperor Akihito of Japan was recently forced to apologize to his nation in an embarrassing loss of face.

The gift?

A couple of lowly bluegills -- Illinois' official state fish -- from the Shedd Aquarium, given to then-Crown Prince Akihito by Mayor Richard J. Daley in 1960.

The tasty Chicago bluegills escaped into Japanese lakes and rivers, making more bluegills, ravaging the ecosystem, steadily destroying the native species and the fish harvests.

That's why, a few days ago, in what The New York Times called "a rare expression of contrition," Emperor Akihito was compelled to humble himself. That's unheard of in Japan, a country where honor is paramount. It's also unheard of for the mayor of Chicago to apologize for anything. If you don't believe me, just take a ride on the public transportation system.

"I brought bluegill back from the United States nearly 50 years ago and donated them to a research institute of the Fisheries Agency," the embarrassed emperor was quoted as saying in a wire report.

"Its cultivation started as there were great expectations of raising them for food in those days," said the emperor, an ichthyologist (fish expert). "My heart aches to see it has turned out like this."

My heart aches, too. But not for the emperor. It aches for Mayor Richard M. Daley's pinkie.

The only thing to do, it seems, is for the son of the great fish giver, our current mayor, to act honorably in recompense for this diplomatic disaster.

His father, Chicago's fish giver -- the late Richard J. -- often fondly dreamed of Chicagoans and that noblest of creatures, the fish.

"People from the Loop could catch fish in the Chicago River and barbecue them on lower Wacker Drive," he was known to say, when he dreamed such dreams, even though to most people, eating fish from the Chicago River would be a nightmare.

But the Daley clan's fish dreams have become a catastrophe for the people of Japan. This is an international incident. An emperor has been humbled. And now Chicago's emperor must pay.

Monday, November 26, 2007


I was able to attend a meeting of the Fellowship of Christian Police Officers meeting over the weekend at Judsen University in Elgin Illinois. I was revivified to see other dedicated Christian men in the policing field. They ranged from Chiefs to patrolmen. I was once again reminded that my struggles and concerns are not unique to my personal experience but rather the price of being a Christian in a fallen world. In this position we as PO's have so many opportunities to be a positive influence in a another's life and especially with marginalize people that no one else is able to connect with, that seeing a room full of people dedicated to this idea is very heartening. Below is the link to their website. If you are considering it, I would recommend joining it.


Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Where the Rubber Meets…

I responded to a Home Invasion in progress that required the entire shift to respond. We were dispatched to a home in the north part of town. The homeowner had informed the 911 operator that she was currently hiding in her bathroom behind a locked door with the telephone in fear for her life. A large young female had pushed her way into the caller’s home and was currently stealing money and refusing to leave. The six squads quickly reached the house. I parked my squad, jumped out and ran to the incident location. I quickly observed a stout female standing on the grass right outside the front door wearing a nursing uniform, looking impatient. I walked up to her and she immediately said, “Thank God you are here; that woman is impossible and I did not know what else to do.” At this statement the stereotype personified for all little old ladies everywhere stepped to the screen door and quickly locked it from the inside. The little old lady looked out at me and disgustedly stated, “About time you got here. I did not know how much longer I was going to have to spend trapped in my house with this intruder. She has been here all day and I shudder when I think of all the things she has stolen and given to her fellow criminals.” I turned toward the lady waiting patiently next to me and noticed for the first time that she had a label nametag and a stethoscope dangling from around her neck. I asked for her nursing identification and she provided it for me. I verified her identity through our computer database and called her employer to further confirm that the little old lady was suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, and the in-house-nurse had been hired by the little old lady’s son. As, I walked over to the screen door to speak to the homeowner, she immediately said, “Well, what are you waiting for? Arrest her!” I asked to be let inside so that I could speak to her about this matter but she refused. I told her that it would not be a good idea to speak to her through the screen door because the nurse (home invader) could hear our conversation. She shook her head no, and told me that if she opened the door the burglar would get back into her home. I had to promise her that I would stop any attempt by the nurse/burglar to reenter the house. She reluctantly and dramatically unlocked the door and let me into the house. I made several attempts to explain to her that the burglar was really a nurse who was in the house to look after her well-being. She refused to even consider the possibility. Faced with this failure to communicate I went out and found my Sergeant and he attempted to convince the ill woman to allow the nurse to come back into her home. He was not in any way more successful than I had been. The nurse was able to provide me with the telephone number for the homeowner’s son and I called him at work. The ill lady was handed the telephone and she spoke to her son for a while but still would not allow the nurse to come into the home. She even told me, between screaming at us to arrest the nurse, that the person who she had spoken with on the telephone could not possibly have been her son because he would never take the burglar’s side and as such had to be an imposter. We concluded the incident through the use of a ruse by convincing the little old lady to check on her paperwork in her bedroom, which allowed the nurse to sneak back into the home. The second that the little old lady saw the nurse, she began to scream, “Get her out! Get her out!” We tried to calm her down but she would only say over and over, “Why are the Police helping someone steal. Where is the justice? I need help! You need to help me!” My fellow Officers and I could only walk out of the front door and back to our squads with her shrieks following after us.
I was very troubled by this call for a number of reasons. Apart from my frustration due to my inability to help her, I was troubled by her situation. I understood her perspective; she truly believed that a criminal had broken into her home and had reached out to the Police to save her. Instead, in a way similar to the Twilight Zone-esk way the Police not only do not help her; they enable the criminal to stay in her home. The issues raised were all due to her horrible debilitating disease. She truly believed that she was being held captive in her home. Further, all involved were similarly affected by this delusion. The nurse had to continue to treat her patient, even though the patient believed that she was there to hurt her. The nurse asked me if I had any idea how hard it is to give someone their medication when they were convinced that you are trying to poison them. The son was attempting to honor his mother’s wishes for her to stay in her home for as long as was possible because she dreaded (rightly so) being sent to a nursing home and yet his mother would curse at him for allowing others to enter her home. The Police responded to this home at least a dozen more times for 911 calls but found they were powerless to do anything constructive for this stricken woman. A true nightmare for this woman and her family to be trapped in that would only be solved (With today’s medical knowledge) with her eventual death.
I have learned to value these types of calls. This is the place where I am tested and find if I truly have a strong faith in God. If you can enter this house and return still firm in your faith of a good and faithful God, you have met the challenge and prevailed. I have seen many types of living horrors from the mundane to the grotesque and as a result have found my walk with Jesus strengthened (Some took longer for me to understand God’s holiness than others). People in most other professions find their belief challenged only when they are affected by personal tragedy. As a Christian Police Officer you have your job to supply you with a seemingly endless series of tests and trials. If you want to know where you are strong and where you are weak with your walk with Jesus you will find it here. Psalm 26:2 states: 2Put me on trial, LORD, and cross-examine me. Test my motives and affections. Romans 5:3 states: 3We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they are good for us--they help us learn to endure. 1 Peter 1:7 states: 7These trials are only to test your faith, to show that it is strong and pure. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold--and your faith is far more precious to God than mere gold. So if your faith remains strong after being tried by fiery trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world. 1 Peter 4:13 states: 13Instead, be very glad--because these trials will make you partners with Christ in his suffering, and afterward you will have the wonderful joy of sharing his glory when it is displayed to all the world. Psalm 66:10 states: 10You have tested us, O God; you have purified us like silver melted in a crucible. . If you can pass these tests you will be a stronger Christian from the experience.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Mercy Me

My wife and I in the company of two of our friends went up into Wisconsin on Saturday to attend the Mercy Me concert. What a great experience. I was very pleased that Mercy Me sounds live just like they sound on their CDs, a rear feat these days.
How refreshing and battery recharging to go to a social activity in a Christian environment. I would recommend a Mercy Me concert to anyone.

The Christian life is not simply an exercise in worship on a Sunday or simply an accuse to separate oneself from all of life's tasks. Rather it is the ultimate joining of the four tasks of life (Worship, Work, Leisure and Family) for a higher purpose. It's sad that I have to remind myself now and again that leisure is an integral part because of my over focus on the other three.

So go out there and have fun.

John 15:15
I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.

Jesus is the ultimate friend among many many other things. How much more important is your Godly interactions with your other friends knowing that Jesus is part of that group.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Doug Parker Where are you.

I find it strange that you can loose friends and acquaintances in this day and age of electronic communication. Or maybe they want to be lost, I never know. The ease of communication at times makes it easier to maintain surface relationships rather than be challenged to have deep and lasting friendships. Anyway there are a couple of people that have slipped by me that I would like to reconnect with.

So I am going to see how true the six degrees of the Kevin Bacon game really is.

If you know a Doug Parker who attended the Illinois Police State Academy from Jan-May 1997, then worked as a conservation officer in either Lake or McHenry Counties (I can not remember which) then went to Georgia to be a a conservation officer there and then, I believe, went to Atlanta PD. Then have him contact me here at the blog or leave a way to get a hold of him (I assume E-mail).
Look out Chris Wood you are next.

Monday, November 12, 2007


I did not really have anything that struck me today so...since I am drinking a beer I will provide my top five favorite beers topped with a bit of guilty or guzzling feelings.

1. Shiner Blonde (Larger)from Spoetzl Brewing Co Gambrinus Company San Antonio, Texas Year opened 1909

2. Blue Moon (Belgian white ale) from Coors

3. Sierra Nevada Pale Ale-Sierra Nevada Brewing Company Chico, CA United States
Year opened 1979

4. Bass (Pale Ale) Burton upon Trent, Staffordshire United Kingdom Year opened 1777

5. Pacificio Cerveza-The Pacifico Brewery is located in beautiful Mazatlan, Mexico. The brewery was founded in 1900 by German settlers.

1 Samuel 1:15
"Not so, my lord," Hannah replied, "I am a woman who is deeply troubled. I have not been drinking wine or beer; I was pouring out my soul to the LORD.

Proverbs 20:1
Wine is a mocker and beer a brawler; whoever is led astray by them is not wise.

Proverbs 31:4
"It is not for kings, O Lemuel— not for kings to drink wine, not for rulers to crave beer,"

Proverbs 31:6
Give beer to those who are perishing, wine to those who are in anguish;

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Nothing in isolation

Well after three false starts I finally have my modem and I can get back to blogging. You gotta love At&t, they can mess even the simplest things up.

Anyway, I was reading in the Chicago Tribune about the growing scandal concerning Oral Robert's University and the suspected pilfering by his son and daughter-in-law (Richard and Lindsey Roberts) (article link in sidebar). This controversy again reminded me that sin is not a personal act but rather an action that has a corporate affect.

When you take a personal, moral and ethical stand as a follower of Christ you are being watched to see if what you profess matches what you do. I wonder how many will use the failure of the Roberts family as an excuse to reject the message they professed.

No one is prefect and Christ is needed for everyone due to that fact. However nothing goes unseen and sin has a wave of effect that radiates out from the sinner and makes it to all the edges of the pond. I wonder if we take into account the ramifications not only to ourselves but the affect on others would we still commit that sinful act of pleasure.

A convicted moral stand begets responsibility beyond who you directly affect.

Proverbs 14:34 Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Fun with Norris

I still do not have my new modem.

Here is the link to Chuck Norris Facts. http://www.chucknorrisfacts.com (Cut and paste it into your web browser). Humor is a necessary key to life.

Ecclesiastes 3:3-5

3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,

4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,

5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,

Here are my two, Chuck Norris doesn't need a gun, he just spits the bullets out. Chuck Norris does not get parking tickets, cities pay Chuck to park.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

For a short time

I have lost my DSL modem and am waiting for a new one through the mail. Probably by the end of the week I will go back to posting every other day.