As the clock struck midnight, I heard people wildly celebrating the arrival of 2013 in my neighborhood. Some neighbors were singing, dancing, and kissing outside their houses turning my quiet residential street into our own party hall. I wondered if any of my neighbors realized how many police officers were out in force for public safety on a night like New Year’s Eve.
Then I saw a marked Santa Ana Police unit speed down the street, overhead lights flashing. Traffic accident? Shots fired? Domestic violence? Those were just a couple of different incidents that crossed my mind that can be deadly for police officers, especially on a night like New Year’s Eve when most people’s better judgment is clouded by excessive alcohol. A somber feeling suddenly came over me as I thought about police officers who died in the last year responding to like incidents.
New Year’s is an interesting holiday: the one time when people think they can scratch their wrongs and right them with a single decision to change and start afresh. It really is that easy. We can honor the 126 fallen police officers from last year by taking pledge to be better men and women this coming year. What fools we would all be if we did not seize such an opportunity to re-devote ourselves to our families and our professions. Let us strive to be better spouses, better parents, and better employees for the good of all our fellow man. Join us and make the commitment, for today is a new day for new beginnings.