It was a tumultuous week for the city of Baltimore, and there was ever-present national media attention fixating on every act of violence and destruction.The images have been relentlessly poured out to paint police officers as inhumane monsters wantonly killing civilians based on nothing more than their skin color, while indicting police as ‘murderers’ without hesitation and without trial.
The narrative was pushed forth that Baltimore conflagration was all about the noble, defenseless protester against the brutal, heartless cops.
Major news outlets sold Americans the superficial perception that nothing much has changed for race relations since the 1960s.
What has all-too-often been lost are the human-to-human moments: the humble outpouring of compassion, the people reaching out to comfort others, and the many small acts of kindness that defy easy characterization.
The Baltimore Police, Maryland Transportation Authority Police Union, and others have been sending out tweets and images that show this different side of the story.
The @MDFOP34 account has been giving people a glimpse of what goes on for Maryland police officers when there aren’t cameras there covering the Baltimore riots.
The aftermath of the Baltimore riots has been particularly tough for law enforcement due in part to the high number of police officers were injured.
The high injury toll from protesters clashing with police came after Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake infamously gave “space for destruction” to the rioters.
After everything the law enforcement community went through, six police officers were accused of ‘murdering’ Freddie Gray with scant evidence presented to back up such serious charges, causing a tremendous blow to morale.
The Baltimore FOP wrote an open letter explaining why the Baltimore Prosecutor should recuse herself and appoint a special prosecutor.
Famed Harvard Law Professor and Attorney Alan Dershowitz excoriated the Baltimore Mayor and Prosecutor for such aggressive charges based on such thin evidence.
But in the time of emergency, the Maryland Governor stepped in when leadership was needed and gained support from the law enforcement community.
A Baltimore “mother of the year” showed people there were parents with common sense willing to do whatever it takes to keep their kids out of harm’s way.
The community rallied behind police officers and other servicemen to show them that they have their support.
There were times when words weren’t enough to express gratitude and concern for others.
Fist bumps were exchanged.
People time and time again defied what they were “supposed to do” – be angry at one another.
And there were moments shared by servicemen and members of the Baltimore community captured on camera that don’t need further explanation.What has been missed in the national rush to judgment is that the overwhelming number of police are human beings and care about people in their communities.