I used to be afraid of cops in my youth, but have long since grown, taken long leaps of growth from that sorry state of affairs. I acknowledge that they have physical power over me, but that’s «all». They can’t touch your true self if you don’t allow it, and you shouldn’t.
Some years ago, while I still owned a car, I was pulled aside by a patrolling police officer and given a ticket for not wearing a safety belt.
- It’s important that you wear your belt, you know, he said casually. – It will save your life someday.
- I don’t use a safety belt, I replied, just as casually.
- Wearing a safety belt is mandatory, he stressed. – It’s the law.
- I don’t use a safety belt, I repeated.
- It’s the law, he repeated.
I was not impressed.
- «When the law is immoral or wrong, it’s everyone's right and duty to break it», I paraphrased. – This and similar regulations have nothing to do with safety and everything to do with the need those in charge have of controlling the citizens of a given society. The issue of whether or not wearing the safety belt is a minor one, I grant you, but not unimportant.
The frown grew deeper, visible.
He gave me the ticket.
- I think we will do a check up of your car as well, he said.
I couldn’t hold back the grin. He was as predictable as all of his kind, all bullies. When they don’t get to have their way with you, when they realize that they don’t scare you, they get desperate. Through a bit of coincidence and luck, I had been prepared for this. I had had the car to extensive service only two weeks before.
He checked the lights, the breaks, the slack of the wheel, under the hood, if I was intoxicated and just about anything under the sun and the moon he could think of and could easily get away with… without finding anything.
- There are lots of other controls today, he whimpered eventually. – The roads are practically swarming with officers.
He emphasized his words as if he was paid to do so (and he is). I was not impressed.
- Thank you for the tip, officer, I said. – I will probably wear my belt for the rest of the day then, and will save a lot of money. You are most kind…
My passengers had a great time and had started giggling openly some time ago.
Two other cars that had been pulled in with me started blowing the horn.
I knew he wanted to do bad things to me then, wanted it bad. His eyes were practically bulging in his skull. You don’t need a crystal ball to see the obvious.
- I will never wear a safety belt, I stated. – Never in your dreams.
I drove on. He remained on the spot, a sad little bully robbed of his toys.
This is exactly like it happened. The dialogue is spot on. I haven’t exaggerated in any way, not making myself look braver than I was. It’s only one modest, minor example of many similar and bigger cases through the years. I chose this one because it’s a bit funnier than the others…
I’m quite pleased with how I behave in the company of cops as an adult.