Tacoma Police Officer Killed: My thoughts

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I don’t have any first-hand accounts of this, but here is my current understanding:

  • An officer responded to a domestic violence call on Wednesday evening 2016-11-30.
  • The officer attempted to negotiate with the suspect but was shot.
  • He was rushed to the hospital but died.
  • The police honored him with an honor guard and such. Bravo to the Tacoma Police for showing honor and dignity. We need more of those kinds of things in this world, to show everyone how valuable every life is.
  • The woman was able to escape, but two young children were in the house.
  • A police officer rescued one of the children.
  • At 3 in the morning or so the police shot and killed the suspect because he was a threat.
  • Police are still trying to put together the entire story.

My thoughts:

  • I don’t hate the suspect. As a man, I know how hard it is to keep control of my own emotions and I know how difficult it is to be the man of the house. I don’t know what happened, but I hope it was simply he was not mentally healthy. I don’t wish that it turns out he is just a sick, sick man who likes to kill people.
  • My condolences to the police officer and his family. When I lived in Federal Way, there was a police officer who was killed and it affected all of us. Let’s remember that cops wake up in the morning with the intention of helping someone. Certainly, this police officer did not deserve to die for the actions he took. Even if he were the most corrupt cop who ever walked on planet earth, we deserve to honor the fact that he put on a uniform, responded to a domestic violence call, and attempted to negotiate for the safety of others. For that and that alone, he is a hero. But that doesn’t change the fact that there are thousands and thousands and thousands of people who wake up every day, put on a uniform, put their lives in danger just to help people we’ll never meet. The fact that they do not get shot or killed doesn’t mean they are any less of a hero. As a community, we owe it to that man and his family to remember him for what he did.
  • To all the other cops out there who acted with dignity and respect, thank you for setting a wonderful example to me, my family, and my community, and the world. Our generation doesn’t really consider how important it is to show respect, but you doing so has stirred our souls and hopefully has awakened us to a sense of our duty to remember and revere those who have done so much for us.
  • My condolences to the family and friends and community as well. Again, I don’t know why the man did what he did, but whether it was malice or illness, something very sad happened to day. Two lives were taken. Yes, it was justice that the man is now dead, and frankly, for the suspect and everyone else, a very good resolution that will minimize the pain and so I cannot say that I wish his life ended differently or that he had lived to face trial, but still, two lives were lost. Let us not forget what might have been. He could’ve been a loving father committed to his wife and kids. He could’ve worked another 30 or 40 years in his church, in his community, in his business, and made a positive impact on those around him. But because of the decisions he made, that is not to be. And that is sad.

Finally, the woman who was saved said, “All lives matter.” This touched me deeply and profoundly, because she is black and because she could’ve easily said something else. I consider her my sister in a very real sense, now more than ever. If she ever calls on me for help, I will be there. Hopefully, her simple words will change people’s hearts and help us realize that we are more human than black or white.

The area where the event occurred is not known for posh houses and clean streets. Quite the contrary. However, that area is filled with families and children and people who are trying to live right. Let us not forget that on Sunday, the people who live there take some time to go to church and hear the gospel. Let us not forget the preachers who preach peace and love and kindness and forgiveness. When this all blows over, I want to visit this area and get to know some of the people there and perhaps sit in the pews to hear what is being said so that I can witness that good things are happening there.

I am proud to live in Tacoma. I am proud to live in Washington. (The governor’s words were timely and respectful as well.) I am proud to live in America. I am proud to live in this world.

I often wonder if God is going to pour out his wrath on the people because they are beyond hope for salvation, but things like this remind me that God is good for holding back. Each day we live on this earth, we can find more examples of heroes being heroes and more reasons why we should try harder to be better. This is the gospel message: Even though we seem to be programmed to hate and to kill, within each of us stirs a Spirit that tells us to love and honor and respect and do what is right, and we can see people who act on that Spirit all around us.

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