“Protect and Serve” was a motto devised by the LAPD in the 50’s, it was never really intended to be used as THE definition for the role of police in society.
While I would like to protect everyone and everything from harm that’s simply not possible and while I do provide a public “service” I’m no individual persons “servant” I am a Public Servant.
When it comes down to definitions, criminology texts state that the Police are around for (1) preventing crime, (2) investigating crimes and apprehending criminals, (3) maintaining order, and (4) providing other miscellaneous services. Which cover things like making your kids go to school because you don’t know how to, getting Raccoon’s out of attics and taking vehicle collision reports.
My “no individuals servant” thing is directed at the “I pay your salary so do what I want” types. I serve the entirety of my jurisdiction. I’m not YOUR servant…so to speak.
The job is more complex than what a slogan can encompass.
I would even add that I’m not solely a “public servant” for the taxpayers of my jurisdiction…
I owe a visitor from another State passing through my Town the same level of service as I do the people who “pay my salary”.