From Quora: What have you learned as a police officer about life and society that most people don't know?
Tim Dees, Retired cop (edited)
1. Some people have no regard for the welfare of anyone but themselves and lash out at anyone who tries to make them aware they are not the only people on the planet.
I didn't think of myself as having been sheltered from evil as a child but I was not prepared for the complete lack of civility.
2. Everyone has a hot button. And rational people can become maniacs.
There is some topic that will set you off, especially if it's referenced to you personally.
It might be your height, weight, sexuality, education, how much money you have, your mom, whatever.
Although they may not know it, there are people who find these hot buttons instinctively, and they live to push them.
3. Never underestimate what people will do for sex, money, and/or power. That applies to everyone, from the basest criminal to the most saint-like person you know.
4. People can be sexually aroused by very weird things.
5. Most of the stress in law enforcement comes from the in-house power games.
The stuff on the street can be stressful but you learn to deal with that quickly or you get out.
6. About half of the people who become law enforcement officers leave before they have five years on the job.
Some get fired for unsuitability, incompetence, or misconduct, but others find out it's just not for them.
7. High-speed chases look like fun because they are.
8. People are uncomfortable with police. Few of your non-cop friends will treat you the way they did before you became a cop. You will be introduced by your profession for the rest of your life.
9. Many criminals can be reformed and eventually come to a point in their lives at which a criminal lifestyle is more trouble than it's worth. Those who don't are mostly predators and should be locked up permanently.
10. Never say, "Now I've seen it all." There will always be innovators.
11. Take away alcohol and stupid and the world would require about 90% fewer cops.
Tim's book, "The Truth About Cops" is now available for Kindle on Amazon. Print version is forthcoming. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009B53HVO
You can read it on your computer by downloading free Kindle For PC software.