“The Thin Blue Line” Art Project Commemorates Fallen Police Officers

CENTRAL ART PROJECT COMMEMORATES FALLEN POLICE OFFICERS-- Gwendolyn Sofield, Central senior, shows respect for fallen police officers by painting project entitled

Hannah Walker

CENTRAL ART PROJECT COMMEMORATES FALLEN POLICE OFFICERS-- Gwendolyn Sofield, Central senior, shows respect for fallen police officers by painting project entitled "The Thin Blue Line."

DayOnna Carson, Staff Writer

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This past week, Gwendolyn Sofield, a senior at Central, has been finishing up a project entitled “The Thin Blue Line”. Under the supervision of Mickey Robinson, Central High School’s art teacher, Sofield painted a flag with one blue stripe to commemorate all of the past and present law enforcement officers.

“I was excited when I found out I would be doing this project,” stated Sofield.

Officer Dotson, Central’s school resource officer, was ecstatic when he heard about the senior’s proposal to create a model of the popular insignia. The first time he saw the flag was on Ranger Up, a clothing company ran by military veterans. The flag is a representation of brotherhood and family among officers, and the blue line is what divides the law-abiding citizens from violence. Comradery, along with these established values are what made Dotson want to become a police officer.

Once the idea had been discussed, Mr. Robinson got to work on finding the materials they would need to complete the project. Keith Bright, the drafting instructor at Central High, and his class constructed the pallet that would act as a canvas for the illustration.

“The great thing is that pallet wood can be found almost anywhere,” Mr. Robinson remarks. “It has almost become a fad.”

The most difficult part of the assignment was measuring it out to get the correct dimensions. It was imperative that it mimicked the qualities of our country’s flag as much as possible.

The color scheme of the flag is meant to honor all of the policemen who protect our communities. Although there are many misconceptions about the meaning behind this symbol, “The Thin Blue Line” is simply a reminder of the police officers’ mission: to serve our country and protect one another. This flag is just as important to officers as the American flag is to us. Sofield explained that her favorite aspects of the project were the message that it sends, and the painting component that is involved.

“I have never done anything like this for the school before,” Sofield explained. “This is the first thing I have made for someone else, and not for myself.”

Officer Dotson shared how he has helped raise awareness of police officers to students here at Central.

“I think that the classes I teach, and my visibility around the school has helped students become comfortable with me,” stated Dotson. “You can’t expect everyone to trust police officers just by telling them. You have to show them that your are trustworthy, and be there for them, and show them that the information they share with us is confidential. That is how you build trust with the students.”

Sofield is honored to be making such an inspirational art piece, and hopes that this denotation will help stop police negativity. Recent events have given police a bad image, and has stirred up plenty of controversy among citizens. The vast majority of law enforcement officers did not take up this job to bring about tragedy, but instead to protect our community. We must respect and honor those who are devoted to serving their country and protecting our citizens in order to change the mindset of others who have biased views on the diversity in this world.

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