From the Imdb summary of the American TV reality show “Cops”.
“This action-packed police show follows real-life law enforcement officers from various regions and departments of the United States armed with nothing but with a television camera to capture their actions as they perform their daily duty "to serve and protect" the public.
"Cops" was among the earliest reality-based law enforcement shows, and remains one of the most popular of the genre. Each week, a camera crew followed the activities and daily beats of the officers of a different city's police department. Incidents ranged from routine traffic stops that evolve into charging the subjects with drug-related offences; domestic violence; high-speed chases; and stakeouts and raids.”
First aired on 11 March 1989 and each season has between 15 and 46 episodes per season. So far 24 seasons have been planned and shown, with the last planned episode to be aired in January 2012.
As a rough estimate, each episode has between 3 and 4 different police events and this excludes the TV specials and reruns. Taking the upper number, 4 events per episode, we have a estimated number of 858 episodes containing around 3432 police actions. And for further big numbers, lets guesstimate around 2 officers per event, so we have 6864 police officers on TV over 858 episodes.
Taking a quick surface look at the behaviour of the police officials in these events, one does get the idea that they are well trained, fairly fit, understand the law in their areas, and the procedures that one need to do when investigating the events that they respond to. They appear competent and able to do the job that they have been asked to do, and generally they seem to enjoy the work that they do.
The question I am raising here, is why do these police officials seem to be able to do this, what do they have that allows them to have such a high degree of ability and skill. Does having TV cameras on them really make all 6864 officers behave in a professional manner? There is no doubt that the cameras have an effect in keeping the officers in a professional manner, but one also must acknowledge that they actually have a professional manner to fall back on, in other words, they have been trained to be professionals.
I would leave it to you, to compare this America TV reality show about “On the beat, Cops”, with police officials that you have come in contact with. Is there a need to change anything with regards to these police officials that you have dealt with in your daily lives? Or can we start our own Cops TV show and have the same level of professionalism?
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