We get asked this question all the time, and the short answer is, “yes”. But, the long answer may be a bit more interesting.
From the jump, we have to ask ourselves, “why wouldn’t we allow cops in our club?” We don’t engage in illegal activity such as drug use and/or distribution, or intimidation tactics like telling clubs they can’t exist, can’t wear certain patches, and can’t have more than a certain number of members. We don’t have folks who are fugitives and worried about being identified by law enforcement. We don’t assault people or other clubs because we feel they’re in “our” area. We don’t have time for any of that… so why wouldn’t we have cops?
Why would they be so averse to veterans who have chosen a law enforcement career that they’re willing to miss out on the opportunities for brotherhood and outreach those excluded veterans can bring to the club? The vast majority of veterans clubs we know are made up of some truly quality guys, so the prohibition is a bit odd. Or is it?
There are clubs out there who have a vested interest in giving law enforcement the stiff-arm, and they have a number of reasons for the exclusion. In truth, it’s none of our business, but it’s also not our problem. And that’s the important aspect here for veterans clubs: it’s not our problem. Too often, some of these veterans clubs are more worried about what another club will think, or that they’ll fall out of favor with another club if they allow cops in their club. But, who cares? We believe our focus should be on locating and assimilating brothers into our organization rather than worry about what some other club thinks.
When a veteran leaves service, he doesn’t leave behind his core values. Sure, we sometimes forget them and need a reminder, but no matter how far we stray, those values are still buried deep within us. They were forged by our drill sergeants and TAC officers; we woke to them every morning, trained to them every day, and retired to them each evening. They defined who we were, and when we found ourselves faced with difficult decisions, they gave us a compass by which to light our paths. None of that changed when we took off the uniform. Or at least, it shouldn’t have. And the truth is, it doesn’t matter which branch of service you were in – while they each had their own set of core values, they were similar enough to provide a common guiding point for all service members and veterans. Here they are as a refresher:
The Desert Knights MC holds to our military core values, and because of that, can’t justify the elimination of veterans who choose a law enforcement career. It doesn’t help us, it doesn’t help the veteran, and it doesn’t help the veteran community (which should remain united, by the way); it only serves to benefit the other clubs who don’t like cops.
The last point to be made here is that it’s not uncommon for service members to seek out careers in law enforcement. Why? Because it’s a structured para-military organization that provides a comfortable atmosphere for a service member. So, not only are there a number of veterans in police departments who drastically need veteran support and camaraderie, but a number of reserve and National Guard members also seek law enforcement careers. These are our people. This is our pool. To us, all veterans are veterans first, and if they seek out our brotherhood, then we’re here to give it to them.