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Living in a small town, it is very easy to assume that the major societal issues that plague our country simply do not occur here. The confines of small-town life do not always allow for such speculation as “can that also be happening here in our city?” But, that is not always the case.

Law enforcement officers are to enforce and exemplify adherence to the laws of the land. When this does not take place, societal structures break down. Over the past week, the town’s new incognito police cruiser could be seen patrolling the city. The car’s uniqueness is rather noticeable in this setting. In just this short span of time, I personally have witnessed it going about its duties every single time that I’ve been out and about, and this is quite often with my having kids at two different schools.

What I have personally witnessed in this relatively short time span, is the new patrol car not adhering to simple traffic laws. What I have witnessed is the car speeding, failing to stop at stop signs, and accelerating rather rapidly through residential and school zones, all while not applying lights or sirens so as to alert other drivers of its impending business. Not exactly exemplifying the law of the land.

I have sent them an email to their tip line, but I now realize that there may be more to worry about than just someone driving erratically. The worry is not just the absolute safety of school children and residents, but also the manner in which that safety is being upheld. If something as simple as a shiny new tool is able to skew the lines of legality and integrity for those upholding our town’s laws, then where else has that integrity been compromised?

Perhaps it is time to reevaluate the process through which our town’s law enforcement is screened, before and during the entirety of employment. Mandatory psych evaluations and polygraph testing seem to have worked well for other cities when it comes to mitigating entitlement and determining who will be the right fit for their law enforcement leaders. We too can adopt these procedures.

I, for one, hope that we as a town take the best measures to ensure that those we choose to uphold our laws, do so in a manner that we can all be proud of.

MATT STONE

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