Sir Robert Peel's Nine Points of Policing
- The basic mission for which the police exist is to prevent crime and disorder.
- The ability of the police to perform their duties is dependent upon public approval of police actions.
- Police must secure the willing co-operation of the public in voluntary observance of the law to be able to secure and maintain the respect of the public.
- The degree of co-operation of the public that can be secured diminishes proportionately to the necessity of the use of physical force.
- Police seek and preserve public favour not by catering to public opinion but by constantly demonstrating absolute impartial service to the law.
- Police use physical force to the extent necessary to secure observance of the law or to restore order only when the exercise of persuasion, advice and warning is found to be insufficient.
- Police, at all times, should maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and the public are the police; the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties which are incumbent on every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence.
- Police should always direct their action strictly towards their functions and never appear to usurp the powers of the judiciary.
- The test of police efficiency is the absence of crime and disorder, not the visible evidence of police action in dealing with it.
The bottom line is, we do not have a police force in this country, it is rapidly morphing into a paramilitary force of which a Central American banana republic would be proud.
Uniforms were designed in order that they could not be confused with the military. Look at the aggressive and intimidating uniforms of today. Add this to the politicalisation of the police, they are the governments play thing as demonstrated at G20. Then we have ACPO.
I'm sure there are many officers who do their best under a mountain of paperwork and silly targets, led by fools who have been fast tracked to promotion due to having a degree in some irrelevant subject. But the public support for the boys and girls in blue is fast eroding and who can blame the public? The images we have seen and the reports we read on the news do nothing for their reputation as 'the best police in the world'.
Being the cynical bastard that I am, I think all the 'negative' publicity the police have suffered in recent times is a carefully orchestrated plan for an end game which has still to become apparent.
I think we are being conditioned into seeing the police as the enemy and the public are being whipped into a frenzy by some unseen group. The police are being manipulated too, with senior officers declaring that a summer of riots will soon be upon us and civil unrest training courses being thrust upon the rank and file. The regular frontline police all have itchy 'baton fingers' these days. Robust and firm policing tactics spouted by the police chiefs filter down the chain of command until it reaches the front line, where it seen as a license for thuggery.
I occasionally read a few police officer blogs. A good read most of the time, but in the aftermath of the G20 demonstrations an ugly side has emerged. Most of the commenters, naturally, are serving police officers or retired. In the comments a lot of the officers lament that all they have are 'hollow metal batons, cs spray and an open handed slap' to control the great unwashed. They look jealously at their continental cousins with their water cannon and tear gas.
I hope I am wrong. I hope that I am too cynical for my own good, but I fear the worst.