Shame on leaders who failed to denounce FOP chief’s racist comment
I’m accustomed to Fraternal Order of Police president John McNesby denouncing black protesters and white allies who speak out against police shootings of African Americans.
He did so in 2014, using words such as “professional hatemongers” and “convicted thugs” to describe those who protested after grand juries declined to charge the white police officers who killed Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., and Eric Garner on Staten Island, N.Y.
But last week, during a “Back the Blue” pro-police rally at FOP headquarters in Northeast Philadelphia, McNesby used the phrase “rabid animals” to describe a mixed-race group of activists led by Asa Khalif of Black Lives Matter Pennsylvania and Isaac Gardner of the Coalition for Justice for David Jones.
Philadelphia Police Officer Ryan Pownall fatally shot Jones in the back in June, and the protesters led a rally outside the officer’s home. The pro-police rally was held in response, and, during that rally, McNesby, who could not be reached for comment for this column, engaged in yet another rant peppered with racially insensitive buzzwords. But this time, city councilmen, at least one state representative, and a district attorney candidate were among the overwhelmingly white crowd that witnessed McNesby’s outburst.