At a designated point during your police academy
training, you’ll be issued your handgun and begin
firearms training.  You’ll view the event as a pivotal
point in your training; however, you probably
won’t appreciate its true importance.  The only
purpose for your handgun is the application of
deadly force.  Fortunately, the odds are with you.  
Outside of training, you’ll probably never have to
pull that trigger in the line of duty.  However, every
day of your career, you’ll have to live with the
possibility that the odds will fail you.

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Copyright © 2020  Barry M. Baker  
You will encounter life and death situations in
varying forms.  For instance, you will encounter
children and vulnerable adults existing in squalled
environments of physical and sexual abuse.  But for
your intervention, the future existence of these
victims would be dire indeed.  You will encounter
victims of serious assaults or accidental injury
where your life saving aid can mean the difference
between life and death.  Every time you seize a
handgun from a career criminal, you’ll increase the
odds for a future victim to continue living.  Likewise,
your arrest of a drunk driver, very often a person
who would otherwise never be a threat to another
human being, will eliminate the possibility of a
needless tragedy.  You’ll never know how many
people will escape life and death situations that
don’t materialize simply because of your presence at
the right time and place.

Most importantly, you must always remain aware
that your actions, no matter how well intended, do
not place innocent people in jeopardy of serious
injury or death.  A perfect example of potential
tragedy is the police vehicle pursuit.  Every year,
innocent people die for no other reason than being
in the wrong place at the wrong time when a vehicle
being pursued by police inflicts injury or death.  
Even worse is when the police vehicle is the striking
vehicle.  Before you pursue a vehicle, you must
weigh the importance of the pursuit versus possible

These few examples can only begin to give you an
idea of the responsibilities you’ll assume when you
become a police officer.
"Every time you seize a handgun from a career
criminal, you’ll increase the odds for a future
victim to continue living." ~ Barry M. Baker
Matters of Life
and Death