Real public servants do exist: Simple act of kindness

Published 10:59 am Monday, October 16, 2023

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By Nicola Cohall

For the sake of this piece, I am refusing to use the term “race”. We are all human, different shades of brown. Ranging from dark to pale, but all still shades of brown.

We have seen so much hatred in this world when it relates to what we consider black and white. Brown skinned people have always had issues when it comes to their complexion. Some of the lighter brown or tan skinned people have some sort of hatred toward the darker and medium brown skinned people for various reasons. We have watched many acts of violence against brown skinned people by lighter skinned people that swore to protect and serve the community. Many would ask, how do you serve in areas of people you do not like? Why do some people decide to become public servants if they cannot serve people of other complexions.

When we talk to our children, we must tell them to do what the officer says and not talk back in fear we would lose them from “accidental” gun fire. We avoid areas that we know would have high volumes of officers of other complexions that do not like or appreciate our complexion. I for one do not care about the complexion of a person, but how the person treats me in the long run. My complexion is medium dark brown, and my first cousin has a much lighter complexion. Therefore, for me to not like the complexion of a lighter person would make me not like my own family.

Now I opened this piece with the above information because I wanted to shed light on the possibility of having actual public servants in our communities. People that sign up and swear to do their duties to protect and serve, not just to have authority and use their badge to do illegal actions. Public servant as defined in Webster’s Dictionary as “a person holding a government office or job by election or appointment; person in public service”.

After meeting many public servants, Police Officers in many different areas, I felt that the value of the assignment had deteriorated and that individuals in those positions were only there to earn a living. Like the old Christmas movie where Virginia asked if there was a Santa Clause, I was often asking if there were any good Public Servants.

On Tuesday October 3, 2023, my eyes were opened to the fact that there are still public servants in our communities. What I saw that day touched my heart in ways that I could not imagine. I grew up in a small country town and worked in the DARE program with my uncle who was a Police Officer for the community. One of my favorite people in the world Mr. Wayne Lemon who I often referred to as Daddy Lemon was also a Police Officer. So, when I saw this young brown skinned man in police uniform was helping a fair complected older lady in a scooter with her groceries I was so happy. As I approached the checkout area in the Walmart in LaPlace Louisiana, I felt a warm feeling in my heart as I watched him go piece by piece ringing up all the items in her cart. I was able to catch a quick recording but did not want to get too much for the privacy of others. It was a shock for me to see because he was a Police Officer, but he was a young brown skinned man. I was dumfounded because the Walmart store staff was hanging out on the other side of the register bay, watching him, and instructing him how to ring up the items. This young man took his time and went through everything, taking out the items and placing them in bags, then placing the bags in a larger cart which he later pushed to her vehicle and loaded it for her.

My husband and I were in the check out next to them as the officer was finishing up. I watched him as he showed genuine concern for the safety of the patrons of the store when a man came into the store begging, but also in making sure the woman was able to get to her vehicle safely and in her car safely. When I finished checking out, he was still near her vehicle and I asked if he would agree with me writing about him, and he agreed.

Deputy Green helping a Walmart customer load her bags into her car.

I would like to commend Deputy Justin Green Badge number 1788 on his service to our community because he went far above and beyond the call of duty with helping an elderly lady with checking out her groceries when the Walmart staff was standing around watching. Deputy Green is the epitome of what all officers should be when dealing with individuals of different complexions, age, physical and or mental disabilities.

Everyday, these public service officers are pushed by individuals that want to test the limits. They must remain calm despite the situation to prevent injuring or killing someone that may or may not be innocent. I am happy that even when dealing with the man that entered the store to try to steal, Deputy Green was tactful, and used his voice to make the man leave. Justin Green has a service heart despite having to get rough with people from time to time.

What Deputy Green did for the lady was very commendable and I pray that he receives proper recognition for being a humble and kind public servant to this community and whatever other community he may decide to work for in the future. He did not have to do what he did because Walmart staff was standing around idol, but he chose to help the lady and it is very commendable.

Thank you, Deputy Justin Green for your service to this community.