The number of police on streets could fall because it is not “sustainable”, one of Britain's most senior policemen has warned “We must guard against the understandable demand for more and more officers on the street in neighbourhoods if it is at the cost of all the other less visible yet critical duties we undertake.”-Daily Telegraph
That’s tremendous thinking; less guardians of social behaviour out and about deterring crimes that undermine day to day quality of life. Less symbols of authority on the streets, less public servants to assist the public. If you want to know the time ask a policeman was an old song but it’s just as well everyone has a mobile phone that can be referred to when curious about the GMT; you try finding a copper. The iPhone with it’s many apps that help you get from A-B is very handy as looking for a police officer to seek directions from is futile.
A kid I know, who is 9, was stopped by some youths and threatened with a knife unless he handed over his bike; which of course he did. This is an example of day to day crime that dents confidence and increases social anxiety. Police on the street, Bobbies on the beat, whatever you want to call it, may raise a seed of doubt in the small mind of a bicycle stealing knife carrying bully. As it stands that low- life knows the chances of a member of the law enforcement community being out and about are negligible.
Idealists may say that police on the streets erodes civil liberties; bollocks is my response. I don’t break the law as part of my day to day life therefore I have no fears that a Police officer is looking to work on his arrest rate by fitting me up. What's wrong with public servants that we entrust with authority actually serving the public in a visible manner? The fear that with more police out there, we will turn into a dystopian RoboCop style society is hokum. Robotic officers hunting down fried chicken addictted humanoids is not a reasonable scenario(or is it).
I also believe that civil liberties should apply to those that choose not to threaten others with knives or steal belongings or smash up property. Not to those people that are uncivil and take liberties.