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  1. #1
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    Wink A controversy that's yet to come up!

    It has come up a bit before, and it will come up after this, but I figured that as a respected member of the site, that I should take the time to go over this topic. At times mostly controversial, with justified reasoning, the exploring program is infamous for spreading waves.

    I’ve been apart of the exploring program for in total about 4 years. In the beginning my city didn’t have any form of such program, matter of fact after we became established; we were the only law enforcement exploring post at the time in our region of the state. So, with a friend, and myself we approached our Sheriffs Department with the idea and they graciously said yes. From that time onward we slowly built a relatively stable post, it wasn’t by all means the magnitude of most posts and we never were able to make it to competitions, etc, but we were a good group. So that’s my background here on this topic.

    For those of you who may be outside the US or just in an area that doesn’t have a program, the explorer program, is a program for teenagers 14-21 who through hands on experience and learning are able to get a glimpse of law enforcement. It is sponsored by the Boy Scouts of America, and from post to post its structure varies. My post was set up with a rank, I was Chief and I had rank below me on down to Patrolman. We had weekly meetings everyone had to attend. At meetings we went over anything from training, had guest speakers, to discussing our next event we were requested to assist with. We assisted our department with various events, DARE graduations, child fingerprinting, traffic details, etc. We also were able to participate in ride alongs. We completely funded ourselves, through grants, and fundraisers.

    http://www.learning-for-life.org/exp...awenforcement/
    That’s a good link for any and everything in regards to the program, as I only roughly described it here.

    It often angers me and frustrates me, when it comes to the bad rap that this program receives. I unfortunately greatly understand why though. As Chief I always, always stressed to my explorers that it was an honor and a granted ability that we could exist. Nothing was owed to us, we were being trusted by our department to go out with their names on us and do them proud and I must say I don’t believe we ever did anything less. I’ve been part of many police exploring forums, and there I’ve witnessed explorers who I would say are on a “power trip”, which is sad because all they really are, are barely glorified citizens. This type of behavior angered me, but I couldn’t do anything in regards to that so I just worked harder to prevent such an attitude from occurring in my post.

    Also I never allowed my post to get badges, duty belts, etc. I personally saw it as pointless, we weren’t cops, we weren’t even close to being cops, in all standings the meter maid had more authority than us. We didn’t need badges, we didn’t need duty belts, and we didn’t need to waste money on such things. I believe this is often what leads to the explorer “power trip”. By all means though, I’m not saying there aren’t posts out there with these items, which are able to control themselves and be a productive unit.

    Mostly what pissed me off was when an explorer, thought they were in the same league as an officer. Which is so far from the mark, it often left me wanting to puke. As I’ve said before it’s an honor to be doing what we’re doing, so we should be treating our officers we associate with, with utmost respect.

    The exploring program outright is an excellent program. I can not even begin to list the knowledge, skills, and experience I walked away from that program with, not just dealing with LE either. If nothing else it was a group of 8-10 teens who once a week for 4 hours and time as well on weekends doing events, were together making a positive difference rather than out on the streets smoking pot, vandalizing mailboxes, or drinking in the woods. Besides that we all became best friends, even outside explorers we were normally always together. Together as a post we learned numerous things. We put on every year a Police Appreciation Ceremony, one year we had a mother of a recently fallen officer present, the life lesson we learned on apathy that day when she walked up to all of us tears streaming down her face, arms outstretched, thankful with all her heart that we had remembered, simply could not have been learned elsewhere. We traveled places, we learned team work, hard work, dedication, and along the way we learned together how to execute a kick ass felony stop and a knock your socks off building search.

    I am by no means here trying to brag or change opinions. I understand most officers’ standings on the program; a bad experience and a bad program can start a wave of negative. You deal everyday with shit from the public in the ways of disrespect the last thing you want is a punk kid in a half ass uniform acting like he’s on a power trip. One thing though is I encourage you if you have a program near you that’s causing problems, contact the advisor, take down names, and in a sense tattle. That’s what advisors are for and if that’s what’s happening then it needs to be stopped. Whether it’s stopped through a form of punishment in the post or outright being kicked out, there is a solution. I also encourage all of you if you have a post in your area and have time to get involved, just going in for a meeting to share experiences if nothing else. I remember when officers/deputies would come in, we were just excited to hear stories and ask questions. It may sound horribly wrong but 99% of explorers are not here to be a pest, nuisance, pain in the ass, they’re there with open ears waiting to learn. If its one kid you don’t have to handcuff in the backseat next Saturday night than I guess it might be worth it.

    All and all I just wanted to get that out there. If you ever have questions or anything in regards to explorers, drop me a pm. I can’t change the view of this program, and I never will be able to, but hopefully I change a few. As this is a good program and I hope we don’t lose it because of a few dumb asses.

    Apologize for the length as well.
    Thereís a promise I need you to make
    While Iím gone you take care of the love
    And Iíll deal with the hate.

    Donít worry about me; Iíll be all right
    Just care for your children and sleep tight
    Iíll keep you safe on my watch tonight
    ~
    On My Watch Tonight - Mike Corrado

  2. #2
    KaiGywer's Avatar
    KaiGywer is offline *insert witty remark here*
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    Should be stickied.
    Alpha Phi Sigma Alum - Alpha Delta Chapter
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  3. #3
    FishTail Guest
    Let's see how it develops first.

  4. #4
    Sapper_132's Avatar
    Sapper_132 is offline Master Turd Cutter
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    I was an explorer in California. We went to the big conference in AZ, we carried Sam Browns, Cuffs radio OC and the like. In order to carry these items we were certified by one of the Dept instructors. If we were 18 yrs or older we could attend the PC 832 course (Powers Of Arrest course in California) Then we would be given arrest authority. Also if 18 and had a valid DL we could drive the county vehicles. We had a badge patch which is fine. All in all it's a good program, if LE is whatyour after. I support my old Post still. For all of the explorers that have attended the Explorer Academy Myself and 2 other explorers that have become cops, purchased them a metal Explorer Badge.
    Keep up the good work!
    Just because your sign off after you're shift is done, doesn't mean that it's over and put blinders on. You're a cop 24/7 wether you like it or not. If thats something you can't handle, you should find a new line of work!

  5. #5
    Virginian's Avatar
    Virginian is offline Major
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    as a respected member of the site
    What gave you that idea?

    Nice post!

  6. #6
    conalabu is offline Grasshopper
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    +1.
    And Shepards we shall be,
    for thee, My Lord, for thee,
    Power hath descended forth from Thy hand,
    That our feet may swiftly carry out Thy Command.
    So we shall flow a river forth to Thee
    And teeming with souls will it ever be.
    In Nomine Patris, Et Filli, Et Spiritus Sancti.

  7. #7
    armygrnt502's Avatar
    armygrnt502 is offline Making my streets safer, one day at a time
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    Our dept used to have an explorer program (as well as reserve officers) until several years ago when budget crunches made us do away with both. From what I was told, our explorer program was funded through the departments budget and not on their own.

  8. #8
    KaiGywer's Avatar
    KaiGywer is offline *insert witty remark here*
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    Quote Originally Posted by LongTail
    Let's see how it develops first.
    If you lock it, it won't have to develop
    Alpha Phi Sigma Alum - Alpha Delta Chapter
    ΑΦΣ

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by armygrnt502
    Our dept used to have an explorer program (as well as reserve officers) until several years ago when budget crunches made us do away with both. From what I was told, our explorer program was funded through the departments budget and not on their own.
    That would have been nice, the word bake sale makes me cringe now.
    Thereís a promise I need you to make
    While Iím gone you take care of the love
    And Iíll deal with the hate.

    Donít worry about me; Iíll be all right
    Just care for your children and sleep tight
    Iíll keep you safe on my watch tonight
    ~
    On My Watch Tonight - Mike Corrado

  10. #10
    Cheech Guest
    I did the explorer program for LVMPD and Henderson

 

 

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