I'm 22, newly graduated from college, and looking to enter the workforce. For as long as I can remember, I've always wanted to be a cop.
I chose my degree (political science) partially because I wanted to be a cop. I went through ROTC and into the military as a reservist partially because I wanted to be a cop. I kept my nose clean, made physical fitness a life priority, and did well in school partially because I wanted to be a cop.
My point is, for the last eight or so years, everything I've done has been preparation for my career as a LEO. Now, I'm on the verge of being offered a position with a great department in Maryland...but I'm not sure I still want to do this job.
Society is largely turning against the police, you have almost no support in the highest reaches of government, people now believe it's just "ok" to find and kill cops.
I've always felt called to this career. It's what I banked all of my life on so far, but I'm having a hard time reconciling a reason why I should put my life on the line every day for a public that isn't grateful for that service. Do I really want to go to work every day sitting in my car having to constantly be scanning my surroundings because some punk might decide that he wants to make it on the news today by putting a bullet in my head?
So that's just kind of a general concern. More specific questions: do y'all think this anti-police attitude will sway back in favor of support for law enforcement any time soon? How do you (and your families) handle rotating shift work in terms of living a relatively normal life (relationships, friendships, social life, etc)? Are you more concerned for your safety now than at any time in your career, or has it been worse before? If you had to go back and do it all over again, would you still become a cop and why?
As you can imagine, I'll be making the biggest decision of my life (to date) here in about a month or so as long as nothing crazy happens, so I would appreciate any wisdom. Thanks.