Sunday, October 30, 2005

More on Respect

The other afternoon we were out walking - a stiff work out really - when we came upon a rare sight in north Gloucestershire. A policeman in uniform!

He was intent on doing something - maybe attending to a call from a concerned citizen about the nearby school (which is enjoying half term andf therefore empty) - as he walked toward us.

He passed us by without any acknowledgment. Afterward we both expressed the same disappointment - he made absolutely no eye contact with us. Now in a busy city this might not be surprising but we were the only people anywhere near him. And he was not a new recruit (I would guess he was in his late 30s).

Why is this worth an entry? Well, our experience in Houston, Texas is that the police understand their role as public servants and make every effort to make contact with the public. If you are an honest citizen you get a freindly welcome or wave, certainly with plenty of eye contact. Here in the UK we feel that the police would rather not recognize us as their responsibility. This is most unfortunate as we really are on their side. Yes, we are!