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LAPD - A Department of Heroes
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LAPD - A Department of Heroes

Categories: OpinionPolitics

Image of an LAPD badge.

For decades, I've believed that the Los Angeles Police Department was the finest in the world.

When I read this story, I had to drop everything and write this opinion.

I've argued ad nauseam that governments in American are generally oppressive.  I've complained that the police are puppets who can't think for themselves.  They exist only to enforce laws created by out-of-touch legislators.  We have more laws in America than any nation in history.  More laws equals less freedom.  In other words, America is one of the least free countries in the world.

The high number of laws is a double-edged sword.  On one hand, it allows the police to stop, detain, and arrest suspects when they normally would not be able to.  For example, there are so many traffic laws that it is impossible to abide by them all, simply because it's not possible to know and understand them.  So it only takes a few minutes for police to find an excuse to make a "legal" traffic stop, which can then lead to investigation and more serious charges (which are usually resolve by fines).

On the other hand, police are often so busy focusing on petty violations that they miss the violent crimes that occur right under their noses.  This is the primary reason I oppose laws.  We, society, need to focus on serious crimes, particularly violent crimes, and leave people alone when they want to smoke a joint in their home.

For many years, what I've felt American society needs is more police officers who refuse to waste taxpayers time and money on petty offenses.  We need officers who stand up for freedom and tell their superiors, "No, that person is not a threat to society, and I will not interfere with his/her life."

But I was I thought.

According to the story, "The Los Angeles Police Department will soon start ignoring California state law, which requires police to impound the vehicles of unlicensed drivers for 30 days."

Not only are police officers doing the right thing, the entire department is!  And this is no ordinary department.  LAPD has led the world in innovative law enforcement techniques.  It was LAPD, under former Chief Daryl Gates, that developed the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) program, the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE), and the Community Resources Against Street Hoodlums (CRASH) program.  Today, these programs have been incorporated by law enforcement agencies around the world.

I disagree with LAPD's reasoning on their decision to refuse to impound cars.

"The LAPD says the state's impound law is unfair because it limits [illegal immigrants'] ability to get to their jobs and imposes a steep fine to get their car back."

This is true, but it's true for most Americans, not just illegals.  So why do we owe this courtesy to illegals and not to our own citizens?  Fortunately, the decision will apply to everyone "As long as drivers can produce some form of I.D., proof of insurance and vehicle registration", the report says.

Of course, there are arguments for both sides.  In my opinion, it's America's own laws, such as minimum wage and "equal opportunity" laws, that create the vacuum which pulls in immigrants.  The fact that so many immigrants are illegal is due to the complicated and overly expensive immigration process imposed by our federal government.

America, "you made your bed..."

If the government would get out of the way and allow employers to hire and fire according to the free market, more Americans would be employed, and there would be fewer immigrants.  The way to then increase legal immigration is to streamline the immigration process and reduce (or eliminate) the unreasonable costs for all immigrants.

But until our legislators start moving back in the direction of freedom, they'll have to live with the conflicts created as a result of their attempts to solve all problems with more laws.  That just doesn't work.

I didn't think I could admire and respect LAPD any more than I already did, but anyone who defies the government is a hero in my book.  LAPD is a department of heroes.

User Comments:
Jonas - Mar 27, 2012 02:59:45 — According to Don Rosenberg, "a tireless fighter against laws or initiatives that reduce or eliminate penalties for unlicensed drivers" (Francisco Castro, Hoy Los Angeles), LAPD Chief Charlie Beck does not have the support of the officers. (I knew the story was too good ...more

"If you can't say something nice, let's hear it!"   — Joan Rivers

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