Activist Reportedly Fired After The Posting Of Videotape Of Her Stomping On American Flag

erica-walker2-701x467There is another story of an employee fired over her exercise of free speech in her private life. The speech itself is vile and upsetting. Erica Walker is a radical activist associated with the the New Black Panthers Party and extremist Eric Sheppard Jr. Sheppard is on the run after organizing a protest at Valdosta State University Campus in Georgia where he stomped on an American flag. A gun was found in his backpack and he is wanted by the police. Walker has staged her own protests in walking on the flag. However, after she was identified, her employer, 1380 WAOK The Voice of the Community, reportedly fired her. As we have previously discussed, there is a trend where private and public employees are being disciplined or terminated for their exercise of private speech. There is no indication that Walker associated her disgraceful action with 1380 WAOK The Voice of the Community.

Walker reportedly has a Facebook page filled with anti-White and racist statements. After a video of Walker stomping on the American flag was posted on social media. The video was picked up by many who denounced her for her accepting the “challenge” of Sheppard to stomp on the flag:

A reporter from the Ocala Post contacted her employer, 1380 WAOK The Voice of the Community, and asked if Walker would be disciplined for her actions. The organization later released a statement that “We appreciate your thoughts on this matter and taking the time to share them with us. Please note that Erica Walker is no longer with the station.”

Facebook also took down the images after it said that “We found that the material on Walker’s pages violated community standards, therefore we removed it.” That is a troubling decision based on the content of her views. The Supreme Court has reaffirmed the constitutional right to burn the American flag. Yet, Facebook took down images of someone exercising that right. Facebook later reinstated the account.

There is another even more disturbing site related to the “FukyoFlag” movement where activists desecrate the flag, including using the flag to wipe themselves. The photos are disgusting and infuriating. However, that does not alter the free speech question. This is protected speech. That does not mean that we cannot join in denouncing these people and their hateful, disrespectful messages. Yet, the solution to such bad speech is more speech, not sanctions like those we see on the rise in Europe.

The termination of people for their speech or associations outside of the workplace raised the “Little Brother” problem that we previously discussed. This is not government action under the first amendment but private actors terminating employees who may prove to be an embarrassment to their organization or customers or donors. With the advent of social media, however, employees are under far greater scrutiny, even those who do not actively seek notoriety. Where to draw a line is the difficult question in such cases. This organization (if it did in fact fire Walker) has a right to protect itself from scandals caused by employees. Yet, one can easily imagine a wide array of more modest political associations (even a simple affiliation with a party) or support for a cause could be cited as unacceptable.

What do you think?

56 thoughts on “Activist Reportedly Fired After The Posting Of Videotape Of Her Stomping On American Flag”

  1. erica is a product (sheep) of a movement that is doomed to fail due to credibility. the moral character is diminished to a point of non respect. until this gets fixed, it will always be the same. now erica is saying F your Flag. does this mean she is renouncing her citizenship? if she does not renounce, then she is a hypocrite as this is her flag also if she is an american. what people will do for attention is beyond me. erica, you ain’t all about that just my THOTS. Perception is everything.

  2. In the Supreme Court ruling just handed down today (April 26, 2016) in Hefernan v. Paterson, NJ, the justices ruled 6-2 that Hefernan’s constitutional rights had been violated when he was demoted after engaging in speech conducted off work time. According to the Washington Post, Justice Breyer, writing for the majority stated,

    “’The government’s reason for demoting Heffernan is what counts here,’” Breyer wrote. ‘When an employer demotes an employee out of a desire to prevent the employee from engaging in political activity that the First Amendment protects, the employee is entitled to challenge that unlawful action.’

    “With a few exceptions, such as neutral laws prohibiting public employees from engaging in partisan activities, the Constitution protects an employee’s freedom to participate in political activity.”

    Would this pertain to the case of Erika Walker?

  3. white racists get fired all the time. or at least white people who are politically incorrect. just read the splc which claims credit for it all the time. about time a black person gets an equal opportunity firing.

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