In recent news, we have constantly heard about the war on cops, or of people being afraid of cops. It seems as the months press on, it is getting worse and becoming a more dangerous situation for everyone involved.
The other factor is the misunderstandings occurring between Caucasian police officers, and African-American citizens. This problem is not subsiding anytime soon, which is why it is important to hear about powerful stories such as this one.
A New Hampshire police officer, Tim McMillan, was on patrol when he caught a teenager doing something he shouldn't have been, while driving. He went to pull over the teenager, who happened to be African-American, for texting while behind the wheel. When he stopped the car, Tim noticed the young man's hands were shaking in fear. The teen was so scared that he immediately put his hands up when Tim approached his vehicle.
Tim wanted to share what happened with the teen, so he retold the story in a Facebook post:
"He [the teen] asked, 'What do you want me to do Officer?' His voice was quivering and he was genuinely scared. I just looked at him for a moment, because what I was seeing made me sad. I said, 'I just don't want you to get hurt.'"
"[The teen] then replied, his voice still shaking, 'Do you want me to get out of the car?' I said, 'No, I don't want you to text and drive. I don't want you to get in a wreck. I want your mom to always have her baby boy. I want you to grow up and be somebody. I don't even want to write you a ticket. Just please pay attention, and put the phone down. I just don't want you to get hurt.'"
"I truly don't even care who's fault it is [why] that young man was so scared to have a police officer at his window. Blame the media, blame bad cops, blame protestors, or Colin Kaepernick if you want. It doesn't matter to me who's to blame. I just wish somebody would fix it."
Tim's post has been shared more than 100,000 times with viewers praising him for what he did for the young teen and how he shared his story with everyone. After Tim posted his story, and getting all of the feedback he did, he decided to add a follow-up post on Facebook. He shared:
"The last couple of days have been a roller coaster of emotion. I've hurt for those I care about in their time of unimaginable pain. I've been overwhelmed with the joy at being able to help a scared little kid get to his Mom, when he needed her."
"Then this morning, I felt frustration and sadness at seeing a young African American kid be terrified of the uniform I was wearing. It bothered me so much, I wanted to just scream at the whole country, 'STOP IT! I LOVE MY KIDS WITH ALL... OF MY HEART AND EVERYONE IN THIS WORLD IS SOMEONES CHILD THAT THEY LOVE WITH ALL THEIR HEART! Just treat everyone like you would want your children treated, NO MATTER what the situation is.'"
Tim then reflected how he went to bed after he posted his story, and by the time he woke up his post was shared more than 2,000 times, and counting. He said he was getting friend requests and comments from people all over the world, from different races to different genders, thanking him for what he did. He responded with:
"Everyone was thanking me for what I had said, that it so many people just wanted to hear someone say "IT'S HORRIBLE FOR PEOPLE TO BE AFRAID OF THE POLICE, and I don't even care who's at fault. It's just horrible!" I had over 100 friends request from people all over the country. And now, I don't even know what to say. I'm not anyone special. I'm not a professional athlete, politician, or celebrity. I'm just a regular guy, who lives paycheck to paycheck, who is so blessed to have an amazing wife and some incredible children I love with all of my heart. I'm lucky to have amazing friends, mentors, and family members in my life."
"Again, I don't even know what to say. I'm just a regular person, no better than anyone else. To think that just saying how the situation in this country hurt me from a view on the front lines, could have such meaning to so many people, is so touching, I don't know how to put it in words."
These are the stories we need to hear about in the media--the ones that bridge the gap between police officers and the public, no matter what race or gender anyone is.
Watch this powerful interview with Tim after he posted on Facebook.
Police Officers are here to serve the community, protect it, and to enforce state laws. There should be no reason why we all can't be on the same side, which is the side to make the community a better one... by working together.