Latest String of Social Media Tirades by Police Officers May Prove African-Americans’ Point About Racial Bias
Protests in the wake of last week’s police shootings of two African-American men and the sniper ambush that killed five officers in Dallas have set off a wave of rants on social media.
Not at all surprising, but the fact that so many of these outbursts are racially motivated and led by police officers and other civil servants charged with safeguarding the community is not lost on Black Americans.
Black Lives Matter and a host of social justice groups are gathering to protest the attitudes and prejudices that lead to fatal interactions between law enforcement officials and African-Americans.
Detroit Police Detective Nathan Weekley left a heated message on his Facebook page, slamming Black Lives Matter supporters as “racists” and “terrorists.”
Weekley, brother to the officer responsible for the 2010 shooting death of 7-year-old Aiyana Stanley-Jones during a police raid, has since been demoted to officer and reassigned pending investigations, according to the Detroit Free Press.
“We are aware that he posted and he has since removed the post and we recognize that it is still trending,” police Chief James Craig told reporters at a news conference Monday. “We are concerned as a organization because it does tend to undermine all of the good work that I just described that we’re doing in the community.”
Meanwhile, in Memphis, two officers have been suspended with pay over a racist Snapchat photo. The offensive image, which featured a white officer pointing a gun at a running Black emoji, was reportedly uploaded on the night of the Dallas attack. A second officer reposted the picture on Twitter.
Interim Memphis Police Department Director Mike Rallings quickly condemned the “disgusting” image, saying it “will not be tolerated,” per WREG.
“I was dismayed by it. The fact it could possibly be a Memphis Police Officer just blew me away,” Rallings continued. “We are certainly responsible for the decisions we make, and we are held to a higher standard.”
Police sources told Fox13 the original poster is facing termination while the second, who allegedly republished the photo in an act of disbelief, may receive a lesser punishment.
The two officers have not been identified.
And finally, in Columbia, South Carolina, a fire department captain threatened Black Lives Matter protesters blocking traffic on a major Interstate Sunday.
“Idiots shutting down I-126. Better not be there when I get off work or there is gonna be some run over dumb a***s,” Cpt. Jimmy Morris posted on Facebook around 10 p.m., according to the Charlotte Observer.
“Public Service Announcement: If you attempt to shut down an interstate, highway, etc on my way home, you best hope I’m not one of the first vehicles in line because your a** WILL get run over! Period! That is all…”, he added an hour later.
The newspaper reports demonstrators had assembled to protest a rally, during which members of the South Carolina Secessionist Party raised the Confederate flag at the Statehouse.
“An employee with the Columbia Fire Department has been terminated as a result of conduct unbecoming of City of Columbia employee,” Fire Chief Aubrey Jenkins said in a prepared statement. “This decision was made to ensure our communities that the Columbia Fire Department will not condone or tolerate this type of unprofessional behavior by any employee.”