By Jay Martinez, Former U.S. Recon Marine and Retired Detective, (active Sheepdog)

Can we go on an exploration? An odyssey that by design weighs the validity and the function of why and how we have performed certain aspects and practices throughout our time in this profession. Before we go any further into this exploration, I would like to answer those theories. Because those rituals and practices have saved us and preserved our mindset. You see, this is not a common occupation. By design, it is a unique one. After all, we are sheepdogs. Or has your white uniform shirt made you forget that term? Our sole focus is to preserve our sheep, the environment, and ultimately hunt the wolf and the pack.

But, the wolf is crafty, eager, focused, determined, strong, and hungry. He must eat! In so many ways, I have seen some sheepdogs trade places with the sheep. They have lost their mindset. They have disembarked and have gained an ulterior motive. They have now become those politicians that Sgt. Barnes spoke about in the movie Platoon, “Trying to fight with one hand tied around their testicles.”

I recall the days when officers had to break down their own weapons and spend thirty minutes cleaning them. Now, trainers break them down and a machine cleans them. I recall when officers had to clear their own malfunctions on the firing line and never be allowed to insert an empty magazine into their weapon. Now, they can softly raise their hand while a firearms Instructor walks over with a cigarette in hand and clears it for them. I recall the days when a seasoned trainer discussed the nuances of Use of Force guidelines in a classroom. Why, because the Use of Force should never be considered routine. Now, a rookie takes the test by herself at 0230 and finishes in twenty minutes. She leaves the test with a dozen questions that go unanswered. I recall when officers walked a beat, in cold or in the heat. Now it seems every officer drives around with their window rolled up. They cannot be bothered. I recall when officers cared about their community. Now it seems every officer has moved 72 miles away. I recall, when rookies knew their place. Now they want to run the agency! I recall when the tac teams sported the toughest, fittest, and most eager officers. Now they sport fat guys, who shoot like Jose Feliciano. Like Vince Lombardi, once hollered: What the hell is going on around here?

All the while the wolf smirks and exposes his fangs in the dark. The predator loves when we go soft, when we compromise our reason, function and purpose for bureaucracy, red tape, and worst of all, comfort. The wolf loves when every cop in your agency resembles a competitive pie-eater versus a lean, mean, crime fighter. The wolf also loves academies that don’t yell at recruits and grind them into pixie dust. Academies that allow the millennials and generation entitled to run things, (over my cold-dead-campaign hat, would I allow my recruits to have a say so on how the academy was to be run). The wolf also loves an agency full of reactive and non-pro-active police officers. In other words, no one is actually out there hunting the wolf. So, he runs amok.

We can see that society is producing more and more lone wolfs, hell bent on killing, maiming, and destroying. John 10:10 states The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I think we know that the Liberals would want to invite every killer, terrorist, and maniac into our country to hold hands and sing Kumbaya unto the wee hours of the morning. Well, my thorough and bad ass 3rd Battalion Marine DIs once taught me, stay alert-stay alive. This exploration and odyssey is a brain teaser and a cold reminder that if you allow your agency to become sheep-like, the wolf will spring and do what he does best, kill and then lick its paws! It is up to every officer to stay keen and focused, being lean doesn’t hurt either. So put the freaking Boston Crème down and go eat an apple. I am here to answer your training related questions, email: Warning Order Tactical Training for Sheepdog training! By the way, Merry Christmas, Jesus is the Reason for the Season.

Jay Martinez is the founder of Warning Order—a highly specialized law enforcement training company. For more information on EDP training, visit