I was driving down the road the other night and suddenly a white car with lights on the top pulled onto the street at the stoplight. Now, I'll admit that I was going a hair over the speed limit, but when I saw that car on the street - you can be sure I stayed on the slow side of 34.

For some reason it didn't look like the police car was going anywhere - they weren't speeding away with sirens blaring - just staying there comfortably beside me. You can be sure I was shaking at this point, my hands were trembling. I've gotten pulled over once before for a failing to come to a complete stop at a stop sign - it took awhile before I realized that it was me he was upset about.

License, registration, and proof of insurance.

(fumbling about in the glove box)

Do you realize why you were pulled over?

Umm... no officer.

You didn't come to a complete stop at the stop sign back there.

Hmm... Ok, that makes sense - unfortunately, its an easy one to miss.

Well, here's the ticket.

Or something like that.

There is something intimidating about seeing a white car with red and blue lights on the top when it is sitting there behind you on the road. Still, we like to watch the cop shows and see them get the bad guy. There is something that we respect (and fear?) about the uniform - and often we over react when we see it, making sure that each and every action that we do is well within the confines of what is allowable.

Granted, not all the men and women in uniform are mean cops, but it just takes one bad experience with them to polarize you. It might be driving while black, or driving while 16... who knows, you felt that you got pulled over and ticketed unfairly and now you distrust the authority and sometimes actively go out and see ways to disrupt it.

Still - just think of the fear that you feel when driving down the road and see a police car turn on its siren and lights and pull over a car that appeared to be obeying the law for no apparent reason - it kind of makes you wonder, and afraid.