There was a story in the newspaper yesterday that seems a little bit disturbing to me.
Essentially, the story is this: The City of Detroit wants to make its police officers available for rental. If you are a bar or club owner, or are promoting an event, you can hire police officers to come provide security.
What does this imply? If you own a club or bar, you are currently not offered police protection should you need it? Sure, your tax money pays for the police, but unless you actually hire them (which would mean that you’re now paying twice for police services), they don’t need to come if you call?
And here’s a scenario: What if you have an emergency and you call 911, and the nearest police officer is three doors down from your emergency, but can’t provide aid because he has been hired by a strip club for the evening, and is essentially owned by them? I would imagine you could always offer to pay him more than the bar is, but the negotiations might take even longer than the time it takes to find an officer who hasn’t been rented for the evening.
In certain areas of the world, places are run by people known as warlords. Many of these warlords are able to do so because of their wealth, which allows them to hire personal armies and police forces to maintain order in the way that best interests the warlord. How is this different? Isn’t the city offering its officers out as mercenaries?
By hiring a police officer, wouldn’t your business be protected in a way that meets its interest best? Wouldn’t an officer be more likely to accept your side of the story? Say, for example, one of your employees gets in a fight with one of your patrons. Sometimes (albeit rarely) the patron is not at fault in this situation. Perhaps the employee had taken a liking to the patron’s date, and decided that creating an altercation to get the patron removed would allow him to approach her. Perhaps the employee is simply a psychopath who wants to assault the patron.
If you’re a police officer called to the scene, it’s your responsibility to get both sides of the story and make a decision.
If you’re a police officer hired by the club, why wouldn’t it be in your best interest to simply side with the business? Especially if they’re paying well?
And what about wealthy private citizens? Are they going to be allowed to hire personal police escorts? That seems like it would definitely work to their favor in any situation.
To me, it’s one more facet of the crooked nature and financial desperation of the City of Detroit. If you don’t agree, you can get your own personal police mercenaries for $24-$34 an hour, depending on their rank. It’s an additional $50 hour if you want to police car, too. Hell, I bet if it’s your dime, they’ll even run the siren for you.