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i was called prejudice and racist today

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  • i was called prejudice and racist today

    i have been in and around law enforcement for almost 20 yrs and today something affected me more than anything has

    i worked a crash envolving 3 vehicles and the driver at fault was american indian married to an african american.

    i am a traffic homicide investigator. ive worked alot of crashes and have never had to testify in court to any crash, criminal or civil.

    the african american was upset that i was finding his wife at fault for the crash.

    once he began to argue the fact, i began to explain to him that the vehicle in front of her was stopping for traffic that she attempted to avoid the crash but was too late in doing so.

    a group of approximately 7-8 people who arrived at the crash and were not involved in the crash began to tell me what they saw. but it was not going to change.

    that being said by me i was immediately told that i was wrong and i was nasty.

    i'm nasty?.."Yes im nasty" i said, especially when someone tells me how to do my job. as i turned and walked back to my unit to complete my crash report this is when the verbal abuse towards me began.

    this is when i was called racist. and predjudice.

    my question is why?

    is it because im a cop?

    is it because im white and a cop...

    so i had to document my statements because this person wanted to make a complaint to the fact that i agreed with the statement that was made about me being nasty.

    do african american officers and deputies have to endure the same comments?..Asian officers, hispanic officers?

    so i took the time to contact some of my friends. to ask them if they thought i was racist and predjudice.

    they each told me the same...which i already knew.

    i was alot of things but not that.

    i'll use the word friends...and not distinguish what color or nationality they are .....i dont think it matters.

    just had to vent....but would like to hear back ......stay safe
    Last edited by ocpd24; 08-21-2008, 12:26 AM.

  • #2
    I'm surprised that it has not happened before. When I investigated accidents many many years ago, I avoided expressing any judgments at the scene. Life is easier when they pick up the report later.

    ps: the word is "prejudiced"
    Last edited by DAL; 08-21-2008, 12:45 AM.
    Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored. -- Aldous Huxley
    Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity. -- Albert Einstein

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    • #3
      I get called racist and prejudiced regularly, as I'm sure many others here who aren't either of those do.

      "Oh, I'm prejudiced? Well the towel over your stripped steering column says you're a car thief, but did the nice officer jump to conclusions? It might have been someone else who stole the car. It's just that this car's been reported stolen, and most crack rental drivers have the keys. Do you think there's a chance the reason I stopped you really was that you're driving without plates, like I said it was? You don't have to say anything." (That one wasn't my own experience, but it was a real one.)

      I've listened to outcry witnesses, but I don't usually try to confront them with facts or accounts contrary to what they're saying, unless I'm trying to get more clarification and detail and to assess credibility. I just note what they say and ask if they'd like to give their contact information. If they say no, I tell them their words will be taken into account. If they say yes, I take the contact information, and let them know that if necessary, someone will be contacting them. If it's a serious crime, I insist on getting the contact information.

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      • #4
        yeah thanks i didnt think there was a "d"

        i agree with the fact of not disclosing fault for the crash before im done....and it is usually the case... but he was up in the faces of the other drivers pointing blame and it needed to stop...

        ive been called that before a couple times but i usually tell them immediately that i dont care what color you are or where your from..

        i just want to know why i'm being called that

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        • #5
          I don't suppose it occurred to you that the racist at the scene was the one who pointed the finger at you? You were doing your job, professionally and without bias. The only reason someone would accuse you of being racist, is due to their own racial bias. Racists come in all colors and they'll constantly find those different from themselves to be the one's at fault to excuse their own shortcomings.

          Do your job, do it well and don't worry about other's prejudices.
          "I'm not fluent in the language of violence, but I know enough to get around in places where it's spoken."

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          • #6
            I've asked a black police officer if he deals with being called a racist, he says he has been called "white washed."

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            • #7
              ...And if they called you an a**h*** would that make you one? After 20 years, would it even bother you? My guess is the answer is 'no', and 'no', so let it roll off.

              The fact that you went 20 years w/out having race remarks thrown at you is amazing...I doubt your superiors will put much weight in any complaint that these people make.
              I know the type though...they play the race thing to try and get their way, and when that doesn't work, they go right to filing a demeanor complaint against the officer. I once heard that there is actually a web site, or a book, or something that gives instructions on doing this during any contact w/police.
              It's a very common story. Hold your ground, and waiver on nothing.

              Also, even if you only have a few years to go, the odds are this will happen to you again. It's just one more crappy thing that you are required to let roll off of you in order to do this job.

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              • #8
                I get called racist alot. Usually when the handcuffs get slapped on their wrist for breaking the law and we are not the same color skin. In law enforcement we will get called names and accused of all types of things. But it does not bother me. I have slim tape recorder that I keep in my pocket incase I am not in a position to use my car camera audio. I try to record all my dealings with the public.
                Last edited by DeputySC; 08-21-2008, 03:43 AM.

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                • #9
                  I thought being racist was a prerequisite of employment?
                  Airborne Cops are closer to God.
                  Arms and legs are just extensions of flight controls.

                  THESE BIG RED LETTERS HELP ME FIND MY POST.

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                  • #10
                    Unfortunately, there will always be someone who thinks that a cop it a racist, espicially if said person does not get their way. I like to refer to it as “Reverse Racism.” Sounds like said person was throwing the race card around to try go get his/her way, and not accept responsibility for their own actions. Best thing you can do it to hold strong and don’t let the race card affect your decision making.
                    Try not to worry about it.
                    Last edited by JustTooBig; 08-21-2008, 07:29 AM.

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                    • #11
                      It works both ways. I have been talked down to by many white folks, called a wannabe from Latinos and racist by black folks.

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                      • #12
                        Only as long as you don't see it my way

                        You were called a racist only 'cause you had these people at fault in the crash. You must be in control of your veh. at all times. They were not so they are at fault. If they were black, white or polka dot it would not matter.
                        They are resorting to name calling to make you feel badly. Don't. Only you can make you feel badly.
                        Some people refuse to take responsibility for their actions. In their minds the other guy did something to make them get into the crash. If you can't see it that way , it's because you want to blame me. The only reason you are blaming me is because I am ( black, Jewish, Muslim, hispanic, or whatever religion or race they are).
                        This tactic is nothing more that a poor attempt at a defense mechanism. If they went to complain about it, any cop can see that they hit someone they are at fault. They just happen to be a minority.
                        Remember, only you can make yourself feel bad .

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                        • #13
                          That's why I mail summonses from crashes. When asked, I always tell the drivers that I must conduct my investigation prior to finding fault. If they persist, i tell them that they are free to respond to my headquarters to fill out a voluntary statement and I will complete the investigation while they wait. This could take hours, so you might be sitting there for quite awhile. They usually decline and wait like everyone else.

                          Granted, our accident reports are on the MDT and I usually finish them in 10 or 15 minutes, including the computerized diagram, but it satisfies them for the time being and allows me to get back to answering calls.

                          Also, I never respond to the racist comments. I could care less what they say, I know the truth. I had the pleasure of working for a sgt that was half black and half Thai, but looked partially hispanic. When people would complain and call officers racist and demand to speak to a supervisor, he would explain to them that he was black, asian or such and assure them that his officers were not racist. Sometimes they would not believe that he was black and call him a liar and a racist. Then it became funny to see them argue in the lobby.
                          Last edited by stormz5192; 08-21-2008, 11:45 AM.
                          Being a good street cop is like coming to work in a wet suit and peeing in your pants. It's a nice warm feeling, but you're the only one who knows anything has happened.

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                          • #14
                            I suggest the next time you work a fatality you not work it alone. Investigate the crash and have back up Officers deal with irrate upset people. On fatalities especially never show your cards on the scene as to who or who is not at fault. But just because you are human and did so to get the guy at fault to shut up doesn't make you a racist and I wouldn't loose any sleep over what he said to you look at the circumstances.
                            "Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference in the world. The MARINES don't have that problem." ....Ronald Reagan

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                            • #15
                              I don't care to discuss what race I am, but it shouldn't matter.

                              I'm not Caucasian, but I have been called a racist by someone of my own race.

                              It's not you, or the fact that you were white or not considered a minority in your neck of the woods......it's because you were of law enforcement and were giving them a dissenting judgment and anything that doesn't favor that person will always use everything/anything in their power to make you feel bad about what you did.

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