For a population to thrive, we need a few different needs met: shelter, sustenance, and security. Shelter is a roof over our heads. Sustenance is the consumables in our lives: food, water, electricity, sewer, etc. The only one that is truly out of our ability to control is security. We might live in a safe area generally, but it takes others to keep it that way.
This is why law enforcement is critical. An orderly society can grow and thrive, but there is always an element of human nature that requires oversight from another. Law enforcement is the last line of defense where if the rest of society has not able to keep a malevolent actor in check. Cops deserve our respect because they have to make decisions in a heartbeat, and that heartbeat is the difference in a safe outcome or something else.
The crime rate in Grand Rapids is higher than the national average, so that’s something that we as a community need to work on. We need to find ways to get people to work. We need to find ways to get people the essentials that they need. And importantly, we need to make sure that the people of this community feel safe in their own homes and neighborhoods. That starts with every one of us, and in the end, we need the help of law enforcement to make sure that everyone stays safe in our district.
Sadly, when cops get prosecuted, like in the case happening right now in Grand Rapids, that does not help attract and retain top talent. I’ve seen lots of signs for GRPD hiring new officers. If I was interested in going into law enforcement I probably wouldn’t consider Grand Rapids after officer Schurr was charged. We need (good) law enforcement desperately in this city and in the county. I promise to promote Kent County as a great place for law enforcement, that we will stand up for them and do our best to make their jobs easier.