Public save cops from attacker
Passers-by swooped in to help two female police officers being attacked by a man who shrugged off the effects of capsicum spray - and almost stole a gun.
The Bankstown constables went to a Woodville Rd car dealership yesterday afternoon after receiving reports of a man causing problems ... The man ... assaulted them ... He then pushed the other officer into a parked car, causing her to hit her head and drop her baton which he then picked up.
The man was about to strike the officer with the baton when he was restrained by up to 10 passers-by ...
It wasn't so long ago that most police were tall, well-built, physically intimidating men. When there were two on patrol they commanded instinctive respect.
Then the recruiting pattern changed. I remember my surprise the first time I saw the physically weaker new breed of police. Even back then I thought the day would arrive when the public would have to help out the police in violent situations.
The problem runs deep. On the NSW police force website you find the following recruitment information:
Q. Is there a particular cultural group the NSW Police Force is recruiting?
The NSW Police Force's aim is to achieve an officer profile balanced in gender, ethnicity and age, which reflects the diversity of the NSW population.
Think about this. If the police force is no different in composition to the general population, then how is it superior in upholding the law? If an older woman is threatened by a young man, and another older woman arrives to deal with the situation, what has been gained?
I suppose you could argue that the police could send in a large contingent of officers and gain superiority by force of numbers, but in reality it takes time for numbers of police to reach a crime scene.
And anyway, the real aim of the police bureaucracy is not to achieve a balanced profile but to feminise the police force. There are reformers in the ranks who believe that the future for the police forces is female.
Here in Victoria the Police Commissioner Christine Nixon applied to set aside sex discrimination laws to allow 50% of new recruits to be female. As usually happens, the ideal of equal numbers of recruits soon went out the window, and the latest graduating class is two thirds female.
Those police wanting to be promoted to sergeant now face this process:
Applicants are given a long list of qualities our new force demands, such as "empathy and cultural awareness" and the ability to be inclusive, sensitive, polite, considerate, genuine, supportive and co-operative.
Questions they are asked include: "Can you give examples when you have enabled (a) diverse community group with differing views to unify for the common good?"
But not once in the six-page guide are they asked to give examples of crooks caught. No skill in crime-busting is demanded.
No, no, no. More important is that the wannabe sergeant "shows consideration, concern and respect for others' feelings and ideas".
And back in the real world? Less than a week ago, there was another assault on Bankstown police officers:
A male and female police officer were punched in the head while responding to a domestic dispute in Sydney's south-west.
And last month it was the turn of the Townsville police:
Police have interviewed a man over the serious assault of a police officer during a brawl in Townsville ... The female police officer was punched in the head while trying to break up a large fight ...
There will always be an element of force in policing. Not everyone is equally able to apply such force. Young, strong men should be well-regarded when applying to join the police.