After 1 Year Of Trump’s Presidency, Police Death Numbers Are In

The year 2016 was a deadly one for police officers in the United States. It was so deadly, that according to Breitbart News, 2016 “saw more deaths than in the five previous years.” It was also President Obama’s last year in office. Then Donald Trump became president, and everything changed. The year Trump took office, 2017, police deaths on duty neared a 50-year low. According to a report by USA Today, preliminary numbers show that there were 128 deaths in the line a duty; 2013 was the only year with fewer deaths, coming in at 116. Traffic accidents made up the bulk of the deaths, with 47 in 2017. That’s a 15 percent decline from 2016. There’s a lot of speculation regarding the “whys” behind the decline, but the police advocacy group Blue Lives Matter attributes it to a “greater awareness of officer safety.” Blue Lives Matter spokesman Randy Sutton told USA Today that the focus on safety includes “change in how officers approach arrests because of the controversial high-profile shootings over the years.” In essence, officers are more aware of the potential dangers as they approach dangerous situations. Breitbart reports that National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund President and Chief Executive Craig Floyd said, “In my 33 years doing this, I’ve never seen (this) amount of awareness given to officer safety and wellness.” “I think that’s definitely been paying off and will continue to help make law enforcement a significantly safer profession.” One can’t help but ask, though, does part of the decline have to do with the way police are treated from national leadership? As leadership guru John Maxwell says, “Everything rises and falls on leadership.” When you compare the leadership of Barack Obama and Donald Trump, you can’t help but notice the stark difference in their attitudes toward police officers. Remember, Ferguson, Missouri, Michael Brown, and “Hands up don’t shoot” back in 2014? Obama immediately took to his podium and teleprompter then to criticize law enforcement. The Washington Times reports him saying, “In too many communities around the country, a gulf of mistrust exists between local residents and law enforcement. Too many young men of color feel targeted by law enforcement – guilty of walking while black or driving while black, judged by stereotypes that fuel fear and resentment and hopelessness.” The result? Rising numbers of police officers “feloniously killed” – up to 66 in 2016. That was “the highest single-year figure since 1997,” according to Breitbart Contrast this to just a few days ago, where President Trump paid for the Christmas meals of the military and law enforcement personnel charged with protecting him over the holidays. Numbers don’t lie, and the truth is, police officers’ deaths have fallen dramatically this last year. As stated earlier, there are a number of factors, but you can’t deny that Trump’s pro-police, and pro-military actions have surely helped this number. Hopefully, we’ll be able to see this number continue to drop in the coming years because one police officer death in the line of duty is one too many.