For many years, criminal justice has strived to attain legitimacy and acceptance in academic fields and even after breaking the shackles of night kicks and handcuffs. This has been contributed by the fact that the retired police and law enforcement workers have been recruited to the criminal justice. In addition, their belief that accepting gifts, free services, cash, or any other form of gratuity is professional. However, this kind of behavior is a corrupt intent, whether by the receiver or the giver, and is deviant, inconsequential, and detrimental and may land someone on a slippery floor; it also does not contribute to the professionalism of protecting and serving the public. The Ethical Principles of the Philadelphia police department stated states its members bear the public trust, carry the safety and rights of fellow society members, and are entitled to protect them. Using office for personal gain by the police is wrong, and accepting gratuities that are more advantageous to them in place of public welfare is inappropriate and violates the constitution.
Law enforcement in schools by officers has recently increased at a high rate. This has resulted from the Safe Schools Act and the establishment of the COPS Office, and the occurrence of tragic events that have been taking place in schools (McKenna & White, 2018). Initially, these officers could protect the school community, although others could mentor and educate students. However, the formalization of student discipline by law enforcement officers has led to the criminalization of minor misconducts, leading to an increased number of these officers in schools, leading to increased arrests of students. In an argument, the training and socialization of officers with students competes with the duty to nurture and mentor them.
In his paper on Legitimate and Illegitimate uses of Police Force, Kleining highlights five principles that limit the use of a contract framework to comprehend the primary benefits of the police force. These include respecting the status and morals of agents, using the minimum but necessary force, proportionality, and giving the appropriate motivation. He argues that using energy to violate these principles; such practices include strip-searching, perp walks, handcuffs, unseemly invasions, and stops and frisk practices, among others (Trinkner, Kerrison & Goff, 2019). Police are often seen as legitimate social guarantors of our virtual rights. Thus, their use of force appears to the public as a derivative of an essential human right.
Some criminal justice scholars argue that the acceptance of gratuity is improper and is for personal enrichment for corrupt officials. However, some bonuses are sincere and are given as a way of appreciation for legal services that are rendered appropriately. Ethics on police accepting gratuities is argued and criticized from a personal view, but from the fact that corruption persists even after a broad consensus has been taken in an attempt to disregard it and the earnest efforts that have been taken to eradicate it (Mitchell, 2020).
The argument is that accepting them is taken as a function of improper conduct to enrich oneself at the expense of safety and protection, good relations, and the agency’s solidarity.
In conclusion, small acts of kindness for law enforcement officers are not a tip and may not land someone on a slippery floor. Taking a step to make some coffee when the police arrive in the middle of the night and police accepting it is not illegal. The giving and acceptance of gratuities should be judged by the intentions of the giver and the receiver. In most cases, these are usually done as acts of kindness and a gesture of welcome or expression of gratitude. Bearing in mind the echoes of this discussion that brings other controversial views in law enforcement may lead them to be alienated from public service. They may cause stop them from carrying out their duties, leading to poor community relations.
McKenna, J. M., & White, S. R. (2018). Examining the use of police in schools: How roles may impact responses to student misconduct. American Journal of Criminal Justice, 43(3), 448-470.
Mitchell, C. (2020). Ethics of Gifts and Gratuities in Law Enforcement.
Trinkner, R., Kerrison, E. M., & Goff, P. A. (2019). The force of fear: Police stereotype threat, self-legitimacy, and support for excessive force. Law and human behavior, 43(5), 421.