Monthly Archives: May 2016

The Golden Rule

SEABROOK SAYS:  It’s quite likely that very few in Gaston are aware of the teaching, training and work that go into the job of sheriff.  Here are comments on what works for Sheriff Cloninger.  NOW THAT YOU KNOW, WHAT WILL YOU DO?

I can remember as a child my mother, Mary Jo Cloninger, teaching me the Golden Rule, which is “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” She had to use a “hickory switch” to emphasize the value of the Golden Rule on me. But as I have matured, I have come to appreciate these simple words.

Since having the honor to be the Sheriff of Gaston County, I have made the Golden Rule part of our philosophy at the Gaston County Sheriff’s Office. In my interviews with new employees, we discuss the Golden Rule and its value in serving the citizens of our county. I explain that we should treat everyone as we would want our own mother, father, brother or sister treated by any other Sheriff’s Office personnel in the same situation. It is my belief, that if my employees and I will try our best to follow the Golden Rule, then we will better serve the citizens of our county. Hopefully, we will reduce complaints and dissatisfaction with the jobs that we perform for the public.

But just take a moment and think what the effect would be on Gaston County if all of us just tried every day to follow the Golden Rule. Would we not have less conflicts and have a greater respect for one another? Would there not be a significant decrease in crime? Would Gaston County not become the greatest place in the world to live and raise a family?

I hope all of us will try to make Gaston County the envy of the whole world by trying to live everyday by the Golden Rule. We need to encourage all our friends, family and acquaintances to try to live by this rule also!

Alan Cloninger
Sheriff, Gaston County

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Inside the Blue Line

SEABROOK SAYS: Jennifer Davis is a Gaston native who retired from IBM. Now she is a very successful consultant serving clients in Gaston, Mecklenburg and other area counties. She is very actively helping find solutions for the common good. NOW THAT YOU KNOW, WHAT WILL YOU DO?

Working with law enforcement was never on my bucket list. But, for the past 22 years or so, I have had the privilege of going “inside the blue line” and being bathed in blue.  It may not have been on my list, but I have found it to be the most rewarding and frustrating thing I’ve ever done.  In those 22 years, I have been fortunate to work with dozens of agencies from here to California, often in some not so pleasant times

My initiation into working with cops came during a time of tension and unrest within a department and the community it served. I was asked to explore some issues with their employees, compile results and information, and make recommendations to address.  I had no idea what to expect and, I must say, was pleasantly surprised with the results.  As a result of that experience, I forged relationships and friendships with officers that are still intact today….including the detectives who were assigned to us when our son, Sean, died.  For me, this work is personal.

Despite the negative news that often captivates us, the vast majority of the men and women who choose to wear the uniform are some of the finest people I know. The overwhelming majority of them are kind, caring, men and women who feel “called” to this profession to “serve and protect” – especially for  who cannot protect or care for themselves.

I’m not so naïve to believe all cops are good. I’ve met a few that I felt needed to quit, die, or retire.  But, neither are all teachers, preachers, lawyers, managers, consultants….well, you get the picture…. good. As a consultant, I go where I am invited.  Better yet, I get to decide whether or not to accept the invitation.  Police go where they are called and not going is just not an option.  Often their sense of value and appreciation must come from within themselves.  Other than our military, who else  that straps on pounds of gear and equipment every day, runs toward  threats, danger, and unpredictable situations, sometimes only to find themselves being targeted, resisted, shot at or cursed.

Recently, the Gaston County Citizens and Clergy Coalition (GC3) and Gaston County law enforcement entered into a covenant committing  to “work together across lines of race, creed, class, gender, and location” to create and maintain a stronger and better community.  For us average citizens who have high expectations for our officers, it means we commit to work for and with them to ensure they are properly paid, trained, and equipped to keep our communities safe.  It also means we do what we can to expose and remove from the profession those who do not honor their oath.  For officers, it means they pledged to uphold their oath of office to support and maintain the laws of our state and nation.  Together it means we will have stronger, better, and safer communities, places where we are all proud to live and work.

What can we as average citizens say or do? Respect the badge; say “thank you” to a cop; pay for a meal or a cup of coffee once in a while; pray daily for them and their safety; honor them in your churches and organizations; address negative stereotypes and generalities when you hear them; identify and encourage men and women who may be interested in this noble profession; and, sign your name to the covenant, when given the opportunity.

I am often reminded of an officer’s response to me when I asked “why, in this day and time, do you want to be a cop?”    His answer:  “I want to be in a place where doing the right thing is the right thing to do.”

Shouldn’t we all.

Jennifer_Davis 1

Jennifer Davis

 

Jennifer Davis
Human Resources Professional
Jennifer P Davis & Associates, LLC