Ever since my rejection of God in my teenage years, I have been on a journey through hell on earth. That journey led me to spirituality, which has led me to higher levels of peace, understanding, healing, stability, and growth; but it has also led simultaneously to hell as well, at times. I would cling to spirituality, believing that it would excuse me from the realities of human life here on earth. On the surface, that was my way of excusing myself from being involved in the “Drama” of politics, but underneath it was an avoidance tactic to avoid using my voice to speak up about my outlook and real experiences out of fear.
It was confusing, too, because I grew up within a conservative environment that instilled great values of hard work, self-sufficiency, and entrepreneurship within me. I simultaneously traversed extremely liberal environments while living and working in Philadelphia for 10 years. Throughout this incredibly dynamic and unique experience, I have adopted almost every extreme outlook known to man, being the chameleon I am.
As I have grown, I have felt split between my conservative values (that truly are at the core of who I am) and the liberal rebellion coursing through my veins that seemed to directly contradict the conservative values. There was some kind of conditioning field convincing me that hard work, entrepreneurship, and discipline were somehow wrong and that I needed to trade it in for victim-mentality, rejection of familial values, and perpetual brokenness.
For many years, I had a semi-delusional and at times extremely delusional view on life. This delusional view was, at times, the result of my own naivete and entitlement. I have also come to begin to realize it has also been the result – in part – of extreme liberal brainwashing. As I have grown, I have been confused about why I always felt split between my conservative values that really are at the core of who I am, and the liberal rebellion coursing through my veins.
Abolish The Police?
For the past few months, I was off-put by a friend’s post referring to abolishing the police. I couldn’t immediately get down to the bottom of why I felt there was something so off about it. I am always trying to get to the bottom of things to discover what’s “right” so I asked myself: Is this really what we as a society need? Am I crazy for thinking that this sentiment is craziness?
Please bear with me, readers, I am not here to attack anyone for their views. I am here to express what I have come to realize about law and order, and how I have been semi-brainwashed by the pressing importance of “pseudo-problems” in exchange for actual ones. This was the split I was feeling – I was distracted by “problems” that people have convinced me are major “problems” at the sake of real threats that we all face at this time.
When it comes to abolishing the police, many of us could very well have to get used to the possibility that we will need to be fighting for our lives, physically, in our very own country, if that were to happen. This leads me to my direct experience coming to accept, understand, and embrace regulation and laws and how they contribute to living in a safe(r) society.
From ‘F*ck the System’ to Understanding the Importance of It
In the past, I have talked smack on my own company, Philadelphia Zoning. (At Philadelphia Zoning, we help real estate developers, investors and business owners obtain the municipal approvals and permits they need to develop and open new businesses.) It was hard to believe I was working in a company that worked so closely within the government system. But as I have awoken from my amnesia about how the world works, I strongly realized that systems of protection play a major role in health and most especially, safety. Without my company helping people get permits to build buildings the right way, there are many people out there who would take advantage of a no-regulation environment and build very un-sound and dangerous homes. We need “barriers to entry” for people that are serious about engaging in things that directly impact the health and safety of others.
Not having building codes would mean the decline of our infrastructure. People who are required to get permits are required to build things to code, and many of them – I have learned through my direct experience – would not be building them to code if it wasn’t for the requirements and regulations. I have had to help many people get permits just because they “had to”. I know of developers who would skip the permit process if it didn’t exist. I know of developers who still do skip the permit process and fly under the radar. (Not hating on them at all because I understand their frustrations, but I have also come to learn the value and higher rewards for patience, persistence, and doing an “above-board” job.)
I am not saying every single business owner and every single developer in existence wouldn’t build safely without codes in place. I know good-hearted and morally ethical people exist in the world. But there’s a lot of people who do not have the heart or the self-control to do things right unless they have to. These are the people who hurt others because they aren’t forced to consider others, and they are the reason why we have a system of law and order, checks and balances – because it forces people to consider others first, before making a stupid choice.
I have been one of those people who thought all rules were meant to be broken, and that all the city was doing was preventing people from opening their business fast. I mean c’mon, My slogan for 5+ years of my life was ‘f*ck the system’. But now I have a newfound perspective: The system acts as a boundary of protection around the otherwise unprotected. The “system” requires people to do things above board and safely when they otherwise wouldn’t. People want to know that developers are willing to go the distance to do the right thing to keep other people safe. And that’s why I had to awaken to my naïveté around my thinking that everyone is capable of always doing the ‘right’ thing, even if they aren’t being required to. I consider myself a ‘good person’ with integrity, but there have been times where I too have slipped into ugly behavior. And guess what? I suffered the repercussions when I was sued by two former clients who absolutely had the right to do so.
Humans Need Checks & Balances
At the end of the day, we are humans. And all humans do things they shouldn’t. Without checks and balances that require us to reflect-on and examine our behavior, we would never learn and we would continue doing things that hurt ourselves and others. Actions lead to consequences, and hopefully, consequences lead to repaired behavior.
Which leads me to the concept of abolishing the police. First, let me say, no system is perfect and I am not sure if it is possible for them to ever be. There are corrupt cops just as there have been corrupt post office employees, corrupt doctors, corrupt pharmacists, corrupt teachers, corrupt business people, and so on. (One thing to know about corruption, is it is about evil, not about people. That’s why corruption is never about one “system” it’s about the ways evil manifests itself into humanity as a whole. Not to mention, we have all been corrupt, at one point or another!) There may even be certain police departments that would benefit from losing their funding, being “abolished”, and then being re-built for the better from scratch.
But here’s the thing, and how this all directly relates to my story and experience working with my permitting business.
Why do you – me – and so many of us – have the potential to attend college, build creative careers & businesses without restriction (except the restriction that comes from our own mind), focus so much on our spirituality and spiritual gifts, and live incredibly lucky and abundant lives? Because we live in a first-world country where we don’t have to spend every day physically fighting to stay alive. I do not say ‘first world’ to attribute that to being ‘above’ others, but as a way to acknowledge just how lucky we are in terms of our living conditions. According to Investopedia: “First-world countries have stable democracies and are characterized by the rule of law, a capitalist economy, and a high standard of living.”
I can already hear the arguments that say that there are indeed certain communities that do have to physically fight to stay alive and who do not live the same lucky and abundant lives. These people are subject to violence every day. I understand this, as I have been subject to violent environments myself. Unfortunately, we are usually fighting domestically amongst ourselves in these situations. I want to try to stick to the topic of conversation, as I have a tendency to defend every viewpoint because I truly see the interconnectedness of everything and I also sense and see all of the angles of arguments. For the sake of not diluting my words even further, this conversation is about this country’s threat to itself if we were to live in a society without law and order.
Law and Order for Domestic and Foreign Purposes
Just because you have a big, kind, ethical and moral heart, doesn’t mean everyone else does. But as we have seen with me: even those with big, kind, ethical, and moral hearts slip up and need to suffer the consequences. Law and order is designed to keep the citizens safe from evil and from threats, domestic and foreign. Yes, we are “one” human race, but it’s wishful thinking to think everyone is “good” and the hard truth is that 7 billion people is a lot, and there are a lot of evil forces at work in the world. Without checks and balances, that evil spreads and infects much faster. Evil is the enemy, not humans. But unfortunately, that’s how Evil works- through human beings.
Now, I love humanity as a whole and I am not saying that all humans who do not reside here are bad! I am not saying foreigners do not deserve to live here. I have friends who do not originate from America, and we all know how valuable foreigners have been in the creation of our diverse businesses and economy. I have never been one to hate other people, races, ethnicities, backgrounds, or geographical locations. Culture excites and interests me. But sometimes we need to realize that as a nation, we have played savior for too long for too many people and have bitten off more than we can chew. America has been playing the part of the political martyr, instead of focusing on what it needs to do to get its own home turf in order before trying to always save others.
From Civil War to Foreign Invasion
I mean, look at our country! We are on the brink of – if not already – involved in a civil war. This is not the time to focus on saving others, we need to save ourselves. If we don’t, the refugees and immigrants inspired to relocate to America seeking a better life will have no shot of coming – or of it even being worth coming – if we keep trending in this direction.
I have internally and unknowingly denounced my own patriotism for America as an American because somewhere along the way I became manipulated into believing having pride in where I live is a bad thing. Fu*k the system, fu*k pigs, and rebellion became my mottos. I was sick in the head and brainwashed. I am such a loving and accepting person, and many times I have invited any and all people into my life. I have gotten burned so many times due to my naiveté about how the world works, dangers and threats and all. Living in America, we do not live under the constant physical threat of our home [country] being invaded and taken from us – as we as a people are raped and killed along the way – by a foreign threat. This is because we have a system of law and order.
(What I have learned from historical study of the fall of empires, is it is either done by invasion or subversion due to the loss of values as well as other things like political instability, an influx of foreigners that erode the fabric of the nation; both of which lead to the pillaging and rape of a nation and its people at the hands of itself or a foreign enemy. Is that what you/we want? It’s easy to get caught up in our spiritual evolution thinking that all of humanity is always on the up-and-up evolutionarily. Truth is, history repeats itself because humans have amnesia, despite humanity’s “good” intentions. [The road to Hell is paved with good intentions.] Now is the time to study history when it comes to the fall of great empires. That fall does not come without massive bloodshed.)
That same system of law and order acts like the system of permitting in Philadelphia I was telling you about. That system of permitting law & order is what truly keeps us safe from cheaply and incorrectly built homes and buildings that would otherwise crumble on top of us and kill us if it weren’t for building code regulations. (Not every building, but it would absolutely happen if development anarchy were to become allowed. And it would damn sure become our ‘new normal’ to live amongst rubble and dilapidated buildings.)
This can go very much into the weeds because I am sure there will be people ready to fight me on, ‘well, there’s already dilapidated buildings in major cities around America’. I get it, I work assisting with permits in neighborhoods throughout Philadelphia. I have seen my share of dilapidated buildings and have given two expert panels on the Abandoned & Blighted Property Act in Philadelphia. This is a SEPARATE issue which is more about local and at-large economies, not law enforcement, but I know there will be people that completely miss the point.
Evil Prevails at a Much More Significant Rate Without law & order
Philadelphia Licenses & Inspections regulating building codes is a metaphor for law enforcement and the Military. We need them in place to protect people from the evil that would otherwise prevail if they didn’t have a reason not to. They can’t protect us from everything, but the laws in place sure do protect us from a lot worse things that would otherwise happen if we didn’t have law enforcement. The opposite of law and order is anarchy. And when anarchy is a reality, you can kiss your precious and comfortable abundant spiritually driven easy life goodbye; your #1 priority could very well be fighting for your life instead.
Sounds extreme right? That’s because the abolishment of law enforcement IS extreme and the above are the likely consequences when that fabric of law and order completely erodes (invasion, civil war, raping and pillaging at widespread rates, etc.).
Now, again, I am not saying law enforcement is perfect, and that there isn’t much progress to be made; from proper screening, longer and more rigorous training, to ongoing education and so much more. I understand most people have good hearts that want to help people, especially the victimized and the less fortunate of our world. But we will all be less fortunate if we live in a society where law and order completely collapses. When that happens, checks and balances go out the window, crime skyrockets, and we are now incredibly more vulnerable to domestic distress and foreign invasion – not in the respectful and entrepreneurial way of refugees who come to America for a better world – in the way where foreign, real terrorists with an evil vendetta against America will see their opportunity to strike when we are weak and defenseless as a people.
Rejecting Authority and Control My Whole Life
This is a mind fu*k even for me because I rebelled against authority and regulation my whole life. I was a “good person”, I knew best, authority was a pain in my a**, and I didn’t need to be policed in order to do the right thing.
Oh wait, now that I think about it, I did.
If my dad didn’t discipline me when I ran in the street in front of a car, and if my mom didn’t reprimand me for skipping class, and if my coach didn’t kick me out for my rebellious, disrespectful attitude, then who knows who I would be today? I rebelled against the very things I needed to become a better human, not just a good human.
The truth is, the military protects the borders of the home turf and law enforcement protects the underbelly and insides of the home turf. We need that protection to continue to progress. It doesn’t mean things need to stay the same, but it means throwing away entire protective systems is like throwing the baby out with the bathwater. You’re left with nothing, and a whole host of awful consequences to go with it.
Who Will You Call?
So just think, who will you call when someone breaks in your home at night to rob you while your family sleeps? Who will be phoned when you’re on vacation and the alarm goes off because there’s an intruder and the police are immediately dispatched to check out the situation? Who would have tracked down my truck over the course of 5 days after it was stolen by a neighbor from in front of my house when I lived in North Philadelphia? Who would I have called when I was in Amsterdam and was raped – what would have happened to me, really – if the police didn’t come to take me to a holding cell and then transport me to the hospital? Who’s going to pull over the drunk driver going 125 mph at 2 am before he rams into a car with a couple while they are moving cross country? What teams are going to track down the serial rapist as he makes his way across county and state lines leaving a trail of terror in his wake?
We may not like the way cops make us feel, we may have disdain for their very existence, we may be annoyed by them for all the times we got in trouble for having some innocent fun with some weed and alcohol, we may not like the feeling in the pit of our stomach when a cop inconveniently pulls us over after we’ve been going 85 in a 65; but the truth is without all of that, we would be dying and killing each other at a more rapid rate than we already are. The very awareness of the existence of law and order prevents multitudes of crime from even happening, due to the awareness of the consequences. That’s the kind of fear we need and want to keep us and as many others in check as possible.
Yes, Things Still Need to Be Drastically Improved
Do things need to evolve for the better? Do we need to stop “policing” certain types of behavior and focus on safety and protection? YES!
On the contrary, when I think about it, my behavior is not policed because I am not engaging in sketchy and potentially disastrous behavior. Damn… now that I reflect, the times when I was policed, I definitely was worthy of being questioned.
Point being: There is a fine line between bad behavior that is policed/ deserves it and not being policed at all. There is a fine line between biased policing and unbiased policing. I understand and acknowledge that there are people who may be subjected to increased policing based on biased reasonings. Things need to change and evolve for the better, 100%, but I am not going into WHAT needs to happen here. The purpose of this piece is to show what could happen if we completely abolish the police, and it’s not good.
[If you’re curious about realistic, practical, and logical changes and improvements for police departments, I suggest checking out the Joe Rogan/Jocko Willink podcast as they discuss improvements for law enforcement, which I believe should have already been well-underway a long time ago.]
Do we need to reform and improve the environment for the people who make up the systems we have in place so the systems can work better? YES.
If you go listen to that podcast I mentioned above, you may come to realize that the lack of preparation, education, screening, regulation, and ongoing training is the very reason people die at the hands of police, not so much because of racism. The media will just be sure to tell you it’s ALLLLLL about race so you are convinced that racist police are the problem, and you’ll be motivated to get rid of them since it’s the most kind-hearted thing to do for their victims. This is race-baiting manipulation at its finest and is a tool of real Evil. Evil wants to convince us that racism is the problem so good-hearted people want to get rid of things that perpetuate racism. What really is happening, is that we are getting rid of things that will allow real evil to penetrate our society farther and wider than it ever has before.
We do not need to abolish and strike police from existence thinking that we as ill-informed and virtuous humans with no real experience have the capacity to make it better ourselves with little knowledge of just how protected we really are.
Maybe some people need to see and experience the real consequences of their thinking as that may be the only way they learn. Humans generally learn through pain, and perhaps there are some humans who will only learn this lesson through pain as well.
Be careful what you wish for: we’ve all heard this sentiment. Really consider with logic, knowledge, and groundedness in reality what your future, the future of this country, and life as you know it – would look like without law enforcement. Do you want to fight for your ability to not get caught sneaking weed into a music festival or do you want to fight for your life instead?
Our caring and heart-centered nature love to talk about #boundaries – well, we need the boundaries of checks and balance to maintain the health of our environment. That environment may need to very well improve, but it means you get better, clearer, and more healthy boundaries, not throw the boundaries themselves out the window.
Community protection is strong communities, and it’s also strong law and order.
I know what it’s like to reject police, I was one of them.
I know what it’s like to be a kind-hearted person, I am one of them.
I know what it’s like to be a victim, I have been a victim.
I know what it’s like to want to help people, it’s what I live for.
I request that you allow these words to sink in, or not. If they don’t, keep it moving. Or if you want to hate on me, go channel your hate into your own life, don’t project it out and towards me. Nothing you say will sway me in thinking otherwise, so save the comment that is aimed at trying to change me, I won’t read it. And if I do, I won’t listen or respond. I have been listening to, catering to, and responding to every other opinion but my own for too long out of fear of being misunderstood and for fear of being a “bad” person. That stops today. If you don’t agree with me, all good, just keep it moving. We’re not all supposed to agree with each other. The only reason I wrote this was to express my own flawed outlook on life with the intention to help others with the same flawed outlook realize a new perspective they have been missing. Go journal about it, go punch a pillow, go be flabbergasted elsewhere; but for God’s sake, stop projecting your hate and confusion onto other people simply because you don’t agree with them.