October 28, 2020

Stevens County Times

Your spot for community news in Stevens County, Minnesota

One Day A Hero, The Next Day A Villain

kates-column

During the coronavirus pandemic we have viewed several people as heroes. They are the frontline workers – doctors, nurses, first responders, firefighters and police officers. We have praised their courage to do their jobs when it is really much safer to just stay home.

Last week one of our heroes took a new name. When a police officer caused the death of George Floyd, protesters took on the goal of making our police look more like villains. The protests unfortunately led to much more than they expected like arson and looting.

I cannot understand how people can generalize and associate what one person does with everyone in that profession. I work in the news media. I have heard people say things about the press that I take issue with. We are not all the same. We do not all have the same beliefs and we don’t all act the same when it comes to reporting and gathering information.

The same can be said about every profession out there, including basic things like parenting and working. Not everyone parents the same. Not everyone perceives their job in the same way. Not everyone is a good friend, the perfect spouse or even a good boss. So it is not fair to say that all are bad because of something one person does. 

In the same way, we should not judge every police officer by the actions of one man. I can’t imagine that this police officer even set out to cause the death of a person that day. It was the result of some very bad decisions that he will live with for the rest of his life, as will the other three officers.

I sympathize with both sides involved in this situation. I have often heard the saying about not judging a person until you have walked in their shoes. We never know all sides of a situation or what is happening in the life of other people as they make their decisions. But most of all, it is never okay to destroy property or cause harm to the innocent simply to make a statement. That does not help anyone or anything.

Katie Erdman