The relationship between law enforcement officers and constitutional freedoms is a complex one. On the one hand, the law enforcement officers play a key role in ensuring that people are able to enjoy their constitutional freedoms. Yet on the other hand, it is very easy for the law enforcement officers to start curtailing people’s enjoyment of the very same constitutional freedoms.
Take, for instance, the freedom of speech. There are folks who, given a chance, would want to stop you from saying certain things. But they dare not do this, because they know that if they ‘mess up with you’ they will be arrested (by the law enforcement officers) and subjected to legal processes. They are therefore forced to let you say whatever you want to say – which means that in the process, you get to enjoy your freedom of speech. The inference here is that if it wasn’t for the law enforcement officers, you wouldn’t have been able to enjoy that particular freedom. So this is an instance where the law enforcement officers play a key role in ensuring that people get to enjoy their constitutional freedoms.
But on the other hand, we can take the example of the freedom (for workers) to strike. We often see law enforcement officers being deployed to curtail the enjoyment of this particular freedom. Thus, for instance, we may be looking at a situation where CVS Health staff (whose HR portal is myhrcvs) decide to demonstrate, to demand for better working conditions. Then the employers, or the local government authorities, may decide to deploy law enforcement officers, to suppress the strike/demonstration. This would be a case where law enforcement officers would be curtailing the enjoyment of a constitutional freedom.
In the final analysis, it takes citizens’ vigilance to ensure that law enforcement officers play their rightful role in facilitating the enjoyment of constitutional freedoms. If the citizens are not vigilant, the law enforcement agencies can easily go rogue. The end result would be a situation where, rather than facilitating the enjoyment of constitutional freedoms, the law enforcement agencies actually curtail their enjoyment.