The Making of a “Professional Cultural Anthropologist”

Now my gentle readers, some of you clear-thinking folks, may wonder to yourself, “What is a Professional Cultural Anthropologist?” Gumshoe’s short answer is, “I don’t know”.  Gumshoe got dragged into it. Gumshoe made up the term, but Gumshoe became one, purely by chance.  Sort of by the vicissitudes of fortune, unfortunately.

Gumshoe had the best seat in the house folks from the vantage point of the inside of Gumshoe’s police black chasing endless 911 calls and by case-by-case Detective “detecting” for over four decades.  (Seems like yesterday?)

Gumshoe personally witnessed definitive paradigm shifts throughout his years on the beat.

So to illustrate the point.  In the violent ’70s, the accepted police practice in cop parlance was to “hooking ‘em and book ‘em!” No problem, no question, and no worries mate.  “All roads and all codes”.  Enforcement!  Period.  End of story.  Wrong!

Ever so slowly though, times changed, and the “PC” police administrators soon populated the upper management ranks. Blah!  Egads, Batman!  Of course, they were league with the forces of darkness; the feckless and willingly ignorant “woke” local, county, state, and federal politicians.  God forgive them, they know not what they do.  The term “woke” was not part of the vernacular back then.  The term “progressive” reared its head.

Most expectedly and undoubtedly the mission protocol changed.  Much to the unplanned consequences to the unsuspecting public at large.

Note: Nowadays, the majority of our citizens are dealing with the after-effects of past lockdowns and the hideous and insidious “cancel culture”. Coupled with the lunatic cries of “Defund, Dismantle the Police!”

Additional Note:  Don’t get Gumshoe started on the Marxist groups of Antifa and BLM; critical race theory or the 1619 Project.  All targeted to destroy our democracy and culture.

The parade of the parasites on civil society consisting of the sundry list of scofflaws, miscreants, reprobates, scum bags, losers, mouth breathers, were introduced to the progressive restorative justice approach of “counseling and referrals to social services”.

Behavior modification, transactional analysis, “I’m Ok, Your Ok” were the weapons of choice for the street cops. Yikes!  Where is Sergeant Joe Friday when you need him and you have to settle with  Gunther Toody and  Francis Muldoon from Car 54 (Where are you?) instead?

Caveat:  Gumshoe could still arrest and book violent felons, thank God!

Secondary Caveat (mandated) Don’t get yourself filmed for the “Eye Witness News at 11:00 pm” actually using legal force to effect the arrest.  The “optics” won’t match the brand.

Note:  Police work is sometimes very violent and down on the ground dirty. That’s the truth that every law enforcement officer will tell you if you care to ask and if “you can handle the truth”.  (That’s the great line from the movie, “A Few Good Men)

The outside door panels of the black and whites boldly announced “To Protect and Serve” as the units roamed their assigned city patrol beats.

Yes, by-golly-gee-whiz, that was the advertised brand; the mission statement of the police department. “The medium is the message”, in the written words from Marshall McLuhan. However, with the aforementioned paradigm shifts (mission creep) any clear thinking, adverse career-risk police veteran, street warrior copper knew differently.

It was not really to “To Protect and Serve” but in reality, “To Smile and Wave”.

No Internal Affair Investigators (referred to as “shoo flies in police jargon) buzzing around your sorry-ass carcass while you’re on administrative leave status.  Pending department discipline, demotion, dismissal, disgrace.  Damn it! Officer survival had a new meaning for sure folks.  Street survival is essential, however, career survival is also essential.

Absolutely, no pro-active policing allowed.  Aggressive police tactics “verboten”, cabish?
If not the offending officer would be “caput”. Note gentle readers: Gumshoe utilized German and Italian words in the spirit of cultural diversity.  Ay Caramba! (Mexican words). Gumshoe did it again.

There is hope, Gumshoe boldly announces.  Take heart, times are “a changing”.  People have come to learn that some folks are just bad by choice (not by circumstance). Nature or Nurture you may ponder. Gumshoe replies.  B.S.!  It is and will always be by CHOICE.  Cain willfully murdered his brother Able.  The rock did not make him do it.

These dregs of society,  these barbarians at the gates just have to be locked up; bail reinstated; justice restored for the victim and just punishment swift and assured for the guilty.  This is happening.

The over-lapping of race, culture, creed, gender are intersectional excuses for bad behavior and only lead to destruction.  Drink the Kool-Aide and you won’t taste the cyanide Jonestown Residents. Trust me says Reverend Jim.

The paradigm shift is presently underway which permits cops to do their jobs in a lawful and compassionate manner “To Protect and To Serve”. Strongly supported by John Q. and Jane Q. Citizen. The entire criminal justice community (Prosecutors, Judges, Juries, Corrections, Probation, and Parole). Real political leadership of all sides of the aisle. Church leaders and educators as well.

Note:  Gumshoe garners no hope for the mass media, the Hollywood crowd, and the far left elites.

In the words of General Patton, “Lead, follow or get the Hell out of the way!”

Note:  Cops can still wave and smile while protecting and serving.

Well, that’s Gumshoe’s take on the making of a cultural anthropologist without apology.

Always remember to love the ones who love you and even try to love the ones who don’t.

Coram Deo


Danny Pitocco
Danny Pitocco
RETIRED (as a Detective with the Snohomish County Sherriff’s Department, Washington State), Danny has over forty years of law enforcement experience across city, county, state and federal levels of government, including service as a Special Agent for the DEA, US Department of Justice. He’s a decorated law enforcement veteran, and recipient of the "Detective of the Year" award for Snohomish County, Danny is a certified composite artist and has testified as an expert witness in the field of narcotics and modus operandi of particular crimes in state and federal courts in California, and has given testimony before federal grand juries. Danny served four years of active duty in the US Marine Corps and loves Jesus as his personal savior.

DO YOU HAVE THE "WRITE" STUFF? If you’re ready to share your wisdom of experience, we’re ready to share it with our massive global audience – by giving you the opportunity to become a published Contributor on our award-winning Site with (your own byline). And who knows? – it may be your first step in discovering your “hidden Hemmingway”. LEARN MORE HERE


  1. Dan I wanted to copy one of your notes to make my point.
    “Police work is sometimes very violent and down on the ground dirty. That’s the truth that every law enforcement officer will tell you if you care to ask and if “you can handle the truth”.

    Every once in awhile one of my liberal friends would question the use of force when taking down a perp ie Resisting arrest.
    Why was it necessary to use physical force, why not try to talk to the suspect before using force?
    My answer was very simple. Sometimes talking just won’t work and you as a police officer may have to resort to a reasonable use of force.
    I would hand them my handcuffs and then present them with a scenario where talking was no longer a option and use of force became necessary.
    “I want you to gently place my handcuffs on me without using physical force. Oh by the way while you are attempting to get me to comply I am allowed to physically resist by kicking, punching, biting, spitting and using what ever else I can to prevent you as the police to effect the arrest without hurting me”.
    Unfortunately we are living in a society where there is no accountability as evidenced by the fact that the left has instituted a revolving door policy for criminals with the suspension of no cash bail or just outright dismissing charges.
    It has always been easy to play “The Monday Morning Quarterback” especially with the use of cell phones where most of the time you don’t get to see what led to the arrest only what the news wants you to see.

    BTW most of the time I would “wave and smile” when directing traffic.
    Thanks again Gumshoe for a great article.

  2. Based on previous comments regarding this article, nothing really more can be added. But to reply to Mr. Ken Vincent stating “Where did we go wrong”? It started I think when we took God out of everything, and until we put God back into the morals of the country and stop the abortive, fetal testing, the lying of politicians for their own gain and power, we will have a long haul and fight to defend what is right. Great article! Gumshoe!

    • Ken you are spot on in just these few questions! The answer are simple but the blindness and narcissistic minds of those in power are clueles

    • Lynn: I’m not sure whether those in power are clueless, or just plain power hungry and devious. Which is worse? Either way it doesn’t bode well for our country.

  3. Thank you Gumshoe for your (always) interesting, informative, entertaining and (often) provocative behind the scenes, insider perspective. Yes, even some – albeit too few – left-leaning politicians are discovering why defunding those who serve and protect is a really bad idea. I just read today a report that indicates more and more liberals are purchasing firearms for their own personal protection……grudgingly becoming supporters of the 2nd amendment; nothing like a crime wave in your own neighborhood to change your point of view! Well said Gumshoe and congratulations again on beating the odds and retiring from your years of law enforcement with you body, mind and spirit – not to mention your sense of humor – well intact (okay, maybe not your mind so much, but that’s another story!).