Sunday, November 02, 2008

To Serve and Protect

Last Friday, Malcolm MacLeod, VOMC's Volunteer Ministries Coordinator, posted a blog entitled "To Serve and Protect" on our Ambassador Network blogsite.  I thought you might appreciate what he had to say:

I note with interest the news that five police officers from Orissa State, India have now been suspended pending an investigation into their conduct during the alleged rape of a Roman Catholic nun; "the nun episode" as it has come to be known.

The actions of the police during the commission of this despicable crime were doubly hard for me to accept as I spent ten years serving as a police officer back in Scotland. My mandate then was to uphold the law by enforcement and education, prevent crime and detect offenders, preserve life and protect property and attend court to give evidence.

I took this responsibility seriously, as did my colleagues. Irrespective of where one serves, the responsibility to guard these basic tenets remains the same. This is why it grieves me so much to hear accusations that these men idly stood by and watched a nun be utterly humiliated and shamed by being paraded naked or half-naked through village streets. Fear does not come into it. There is no excuse. My experience has taught me that instinct takes over in threatening situations and those faithful to their oath would intervene whatever the cost, personal or otherwise.

I am ashamed of these men. If they are found guilty and are not held to account, I will be ashamed of their senior officers and the investigating authorities.

May justice be done and may these officers (if indeed they are guilty) and those who watched and cheered repent of their actions along with those who committed this wicked crime.

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