I hear over and over how this is the worst time to be a police officer. This comes from the public as well as soon-to-be-retired officers.

Officers being physically targeted — two officers were just ambushed and killed earlier today in Iowa and are constantly the focus of negative media attention. At face value, it would seem to be a poor time to be in law enforcement.

I disagree with this theory wholeheartedly. I would even push to say this is the best time to shine as a police officer.

The rhetoric that "blue lives don't matter" thank you, University of California-Irvine protestors and activists proclaiming that officers are racist and undertrained is the perfect stage to prove the naysayers wrong.

This is the time to do your job and do it with integrity. Be the professional you are and take to your beat with pride, knowing you are doing it the right way. Media outlets concentrate on the few for headlines, but as the largest family in the world let your voice be heard through your actions.

Do it the right way, and make it known that it is being done the right way. Join together with your brothers and sisters and show the world the positive impact that can result from a career in law enforcement. Yes, our chosen occupation is tough, but tough situations present an excellent opportunity to display excellence.

Challenge your community to speak on our behalf and point out the tremendous job we do on a day-to-day basis. Make your actions speak volumes that cannot be ignored, and local activists and media will have no choice but to take notice. Shine the spotlight reflecting the positives not the negatives.

I understand a few typed words do not make this task easy, but anything worth doing is not easy and we knew going in that our occupation would not be easy. That is what makes us who we are; we live for the obstacles thrown our way.

Our occupation in today's climate can be satisfying, and if we are satisfied with the job we do, then that will reflect to those on the outside looking in. Do not let the media have a pass on the professional job you do every day. Make it known through every avenue that we do a tough job and we do it well.

I will also challenge those veteran and retired officers who tell the younger officers they are glad they did not have to deal with today's problems. These are the same ones who pull up their retirement date before the start of each day.

To you, I have to say that you are not finished yet. Be a support group, not a source of negativity. You did have to deal with similar issues we have all had to deal with tough times throughout our careers. Some just seem to forget just exactly what we had to go through to get where we are.

We chose this line of work for a reason, and that is because we thrive in difficult situations. Just do it with a level head and professionalism to truly shine as a police officer.