Detroit Police Sergeant Under Investigation After Criticism of Beyonce’s Superbowl Performance

BPowerLogo400px-Beyoncé_-_Pavilhão_AtlânticoThere is a free speech controversy brewing out of Detroit where an unnamed police sergeant is under investigation for expressing his opinion about the controversial Beyonce performance in the halftime show of the Superbowl. Beyonce dressed herself and her dancers like Black Panthers and formed a X in an apparent reference to Malcolm X. Police around the country objected to the glorification of an organization that has advocated violence against police. The sergeant compared the performance to one featuring the KKK on Facebook and is now facing possible discipline.

I have previously written about concerns that public employees are increasingly being disciplined for actions in their private lives or views or associations outside of work. We have previously seen teachers, students and other public employees fired for their private speech or conduct, including school employees fired for posing in magazines, appearing on television shows in bikinis, or having a career in the adult entertainment industry.

In this case, the sergeant posted a photo of Beyonce’s dancers above a group wearing white Ku Klux Klan robes and wrote: “So if the dance troupe at the top is ok for this years’ halftime show, then the one at the bottom should be ok for next years’, right?”

UnknownThe sergeant’s point does not appear to advocate that the KKK should be in the next show but rather to raise the comparative question of why the Black Panthers are permissible as a model while the KKK is not. One can clearly disagree with the comparison but it is an example of pure political and social speech by someone in their personal time. He was reported by his co-workers to Police Chief James Craig. However, the objection is to the sergeant’s political views — views that reflect the overwhelming anger of police organizations toward Beyonce who they view as relying on police protection at her events but glorifies an anti-police organization.

As in the earlier cases, these investigations create an intended chilling effect on employees who are less likely to speak their views outside of work. I am not sure why this matter was not addressed as an exercise of free speech by the department. What is most disturbing is the lack of a clear line as to the extent to which officers and other public employees are allowed to engage in free speech in their private lives. This investigation would seem to convey that you speak your mind at your own peril.

54 thoughts on “Detroit Police Sergeant Under Investigation After Criticism of Beyonce’s Superbowl Performance

  1. Paul Schultze. Maybe I spoke too soon about the Black Panthers not being racist. No time to elaborate but check this out..

    ‪Iconic Black Activist Calls Out Obama‬ (this video supposedly goes into the old vs new black panther party)

    Alex talks with veteran political organizer, speaker, and writer Larry Pinkney in-studio. Mr. Pinkney is a veteran of the Black Panther Party, the former Minister of Interior of the Republic of New Africa, and a former political prisoner

    Check out these articles by Larry Pinkney. Hey, if this guy is a racist I’m all for it….:)

    http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/author/larry-pinkney

    Rejecting the vomit of the government and corporate-stream media

    Journalists, hypocrisy, and Obama’s de facto 21st century U.S. fascism

    Barack Obama—the U.S. weapon of mass destruction & disinformation

    Calling out the misleaders of the US’s phony ‘progressives’ and the fake ‘left

  2. Nice to see black people AWAKE…or anyone for that matter. Btw I love that this police sergeant is being ‘investigated”. He thought the whole Beyonce half time show was a steaming pile of crap. What’s to investigate?

  3. Howard Rosenstein (@RoseRockSavior3)
    “Also, she gained a lot of weight. With her fat ass backup singers and entertainers, one could feel the ground shaking.”

    And that’s just the simple truth.

  4. “the people are nothing but a great beast…

    I have learned to hold popular opinion of no value.”

    -Alexander Hamilton

    *****

    The Founders established freedom and free enterprise without interference by government.

    The right to private property means government cannot take private property from one man to give private property to another. Government has the authority to tax for usual and customary governmental operations, not for redistribution of wealth.

    Welfare, affirmative action, socials services, forced busing, food stamps, quotas, HUD, HHS, Obamacare, unfair “Fair Housing,” discriminatory “Non-Discrimination” law, etc., are all unwarranted, unconstitutional and cause instability, imbalance and a false sense of equality.

    Minorities should never have been gifted the power of the majority. Phantom, irrational and inordinate guilt is the culprit. It is counterproductive and destabilizing to encourage the delusion of equality. The only equality in the American founding documents is in the Declaration of Independence. The only equality among men is at “creation.” After that, the American thesis is freedom and self-reliance.

    Freedom means you earn it through merit.

    People must accept the outcome of freedom.

    P.S. Charity is not a governmental function. Charity is an honorable pursuit in the free markets of the private sector.

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