A Washington state sheriff has apologized after a meme featuring a group of protesters being rammed with a car and the caption “All Lives Splatter” was posted to his county’s Facebook account.
“Nobody cares about your protest,” the meme added. “Keep your ass out of the road.”
It turns out it was a county employee who posted the crude cartoon to the Chelan County Emergency Services page, according to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. The employee, who remains unnamed, noted in the post that, “I don’t wish harm on anyone … but protesters don’t belong in the road!”
Chelan County Sheriff Brian Burnett apologized for the offensive post on Monday, Sept. 11, offering the excuse that the non-commissioned employee meant to post it on his personal page. The disturbing image was originally shared from a Facebook group called “Libtards; ya gotta love ’em!”
“Staff at Chelan County Emergency Management feel terrible that this inappropriate and hurtful post made it onto the Facebook page,” Burnett said in a press release. “Changes have already been made in procedure to assure nothing like this will ever occur in the future.”
Naturally, the meme sparked widespread backlash, coming just a month after a woman was killed when a white supremacist rammed his car into a group of counter-protesters during a rally in Charlottesville, Va. Nineteen others were left seriously injured.
You wonder why people don't trust cops anymore, this is one of a million examples. Apology not accepted Chelan County Emergency Management. https://t.co/6myu3z88tw
— Only Bernie Beats Trump #IBelieveTara (@JBoy02) September 12, 2017
— daretoeatapeach (@daretoeatapeach) September 12, 2017
Please look into the meme posting by Chelan County Emergency Management.
— Debs Fan (@ElmerSpuda) September 12, 2017
Chelan County: Racists are ok so long as they don't share on social media. https://t.co/pGLbXSWaZq
— USAJane 2017 🗽 (@2017USAJane) September 11, 2017
This isn’t the first time members of the law enforcement community have come under fire for comments suggesting physical harm to protesters, however.
A Slate article highlighting the trend pointed to three police officers and one firefighter who were caught encouraging vehicular violence against protesters. An Oregon officer also was fired after posting a photo of a Black Lives Matter protest and writing, “When encountering such mobs remember, there are 3 pedals on your floor. Push the right one all the way down.”
The Chelan County meme has since been deleted.