November 9, 2017
A group of concerned United States military veterans are standing up for law and order in America by supporting and honoring the nation's "thin blue line" in a very unique manner. The veterans formed a new non-profit 501(c)(3) public charity, Veterans Alliance for Law and Order (VALOR), with the primary mission of providing additional funding for equipment and training that will enhance the safety and efficiency of America's armed law enforcement officers (see www.forvalor.org). Other missions include 1) sponsoring widely publicized recognition events at local high schools to honor sheriffs' and police departments; 2) possibly arranging special life insurance policies for law enforcement officers; and 3) presenting educational programs wherever possible about America's Constitution, America's Founders, federalism, limited government, and patriotism.
The veterans formed VALOR in response to the overwhelming amount of negative press given to sheriffs' and police departments throughout the nation. Additionally, there is frequent overt disrespect for law enforcement officers, disrespect for law and order in general, and sometimes murder of sheriffs' deputies and police officers. As a result of these and other factors, recruitment of new officers is down by as much as 90 percent in some cities. VALOR's founders believe that strong and effective law and order must be maintained in America if indeed the nation is to continue as a republic with citizens continuing to have and enjoy many cherished American freedoms and rights.
Several organizations have expressed strong support for VALOR including the National Sheriffs' Association, National Association of Police Organizations, Georgia Sheriffs' Association, and the Special Forces Association. Below are sample statements (endorsements can be viewed in full on VALOR's website):
" By supporting and honoring America's "thin blue line", VALOR will make a very meaningful contribution to the protection of not only law enforcement personnel but also our country's Providential freedoms and liberties, many of which are enumerated in our nation's founding documents." ---National Association of Police Organizations
"---it is gratifying to know that America's military veterans are solidly behind the rule of law in our nation and are willing to spend time and resources to protect those cherished freedoms that our nation's Founders enabled us to enjoy." ---National Sheriffs' Association
"VALOR is a most worthy undertaking for us veterans because it provides an opportunity to show our support for law and order not just in our community, but across the nation---the entire Special Forces Association fully support the ideals and intent of the VALOR program."---Special Forces Association
In order to accomplish its missions, VALOR requires the participation of many veterans and non-veterans (volunteers) in all 50 states beginning with Colorado, Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Utah. There are over 3,100 counties or county equivalents throughout America containing over 15,000 county sheriffs' and municipal police departments. One of VALOR's main goals ultimately is to have at least one veteran in each county serve as the principal VALOR interface with law enforcement organizations in his or her county. Individuals interested in becoming involved in this manner should send a message to VALOR via its website listed above; need to identify state and county of residence.
VALOR also requires substantial funding to accomplish its various missions. Donations of financial support can be made via VALOR's website and are greatly appreciated. Donations to VALOR are tax deductible from federal taxes due to VALOR's tax exempt status under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
Veterans took a lifelong oath to preserve and protect the Constitution which rests to a large extent on strong, adequate law and order throughout America. "Because of our oath", says Steven Ramos and Paul Gardiner, VALOR co-founders and United States Army veterans, "we feel all veterans need to step up to recognize and honor our nation’s law enforcement community, and VALOR offers a unique opportunity to do this."
Paul Fiske and Ron Scott, co-founders and United States Air Force veterans, state "Among other things, we are trying to compensate for how we so easily take for granted the heroic service of our law enforcement professionals". Mike Kipp, Navy SEAL, Underwater Demolition Team Member and co-founder, states "It's time to truly stand up for America's 'thin blue line'".
In summary, the founders of VALOR hope that many Americans, veterans and non-veterans alike, will decide to become participants and supporters of this unique, nationwide effort to significantly support and honor America's "thin blue line". Such recognition is well deserved and very much needed at this particular time in our nation's history.
About the author: LTC (ret) Paul S. Gardiner is President of Veterans Alliance for Law and Order (VALOR) and lives in Hoschton, Georgia. Colonel Gardiner is a member of the American Legion and Vietnam Veterans of America.