Sign of The Times
Written by Katin for IPCRESS Blog
For some time now, I have been noticing a new sort of vanity plate on the cars here in Massachusetts. It’s black, with a 1 1/2-inch blue stripe across it. It’s usually so subtle that most people don’t notice it.
It indicates that you are a supporter of “The Thin Blue Line”: our national Police Force (we may as well call it a “National” Police Force, as they are slowly coming under more direct federal control.) Here is what they look like:
I am sure that many policemen do not put these plates on their own personal cars. Most cops prefer not to advertise their profession when they are off-duty. These plates are for family members and close friends who are “supporters” of the police and wish to communicate this in a discreet way. For some reason, gigantic decals saying, “Woo-hoo! I Sleep With A Cop!” aren’t about to catch on anytime soon.
Over the years, there have been a number of decals and little badges people could put on their vehicles to display their personal connection to the police. This is just the latest, but it’s worth noting that this is a much more subtle method of display, and is obviously designed to communicate a message just betwen people “in the know.” It’s hard to look at something like this and not think that the real purpose is to give a signal to police who are pulling you over during a traffic stop. If it were merely to “show support,” then look at the miniature version displayed on the back of this car:
This is clearly a signal. And there’s something about its sneaky/militaristic look that really makes me want to puke. You can send away for these as well as a wide assortment of clothing and jewelry at their website. But, if you are not related to a cop (or at least, banging one) then it might not be such a good idea to try and fake it by sending away for one or two of these. Police have special Fraternal Order of Police cards which they hand out to family and friends, and this is the “official” Get Out Of Jail Free form of identification. I can bet that poseurs using the plate, but possessing no card, aren’t going to get much of a break. Of course, there is a large grey area occupied by people who have legitimate connections to policemen but may not have “the card.” Girlfriends and distant relatives would be part of this group, and for them, the plate could be a valuable item. For anyone else, it’s probably not such a good idea: getting caught using a phony back-up story is really going to work against you (“Yeah, my uncle Fred in East Asswipe, Arkansas used to be on The Force. I forget his last name.”)
But, there are alternatives for those who are eager to display their shameless suck-uppedness but are concerned about appearing as a blatant faker by using the blue plate. For those people there is the iconic ribbon magnet:
This says, “Don’t give me a ticket, please. I spent $4.99 on this classy ribbon magnet. Can I go now?” Or, you could keep it in the glove box, and when you get pulled over, just pull it out and say, “I couldn’t wait to get back home so that I could properly apply this wonderful ribbon magnet. Can I go now?”
There is a plate which indicates your connection to a corrections officer:
Ugghh…. What a bunch of losers, displaying their “secret” signs that they’re on the “Winning Side” of the Police State. The creepy side to all this is fairly obvious. As the Police become more intrusive, more aggressive, and more dangerous, their sycophantic followers must agree on some secret code to announce, “Please don’t treat me like everyone else! I’m a follower!” While the Police enjoy spreading the myth that it’s “The Cops vs. The Bad Guys,” the understanding nearly all of them follow is that it’s “The Cops vs. Everyone Else.” They all share this snide, derisive view of “civilians” much like the military does. Even people who aren’t criminals are very often voters who will not approve pay raises or other benefits through the local political system. Or they may be troublemakers complaining about Police Brutality. In any case, they’re people who “don’t understand” what it’s like to be a cop, and so, are naturally suspect. Only a few people really understand what it’s like to work for the Police, and those people need to identify themselves lest they be confused with everyone else.