Cleveland Police Want an Apology

The police union in Cleveland, where the police force has just been found to have a long and serious track record of excessive use of force in a DOJ investigation, is very upset that a Cleveland Browns player wore a shirt before an NFL demanding justice for two innocent people gunned down by cops in that city. And they want an apology.

A police union in Ohio criticized football player Andrew Hawkins for wearing a shirt protesting the fatal police shooting in November of a 12-year-old African-American boy who was carrying a pellet gun, the Cleveland Plain Dealer newspaper reported.

Hawkins, a wide receiver for the Cleveland Browns, wore a T-shirt during pre-game warm-ups that read, “Justice for Tamir Rice and John Crawford,” referring to the 12-year-old Rice and a 22-year-old man, both shot in separate incidents while carrying pellet guns by Ohio police…

Cleveland Police Patrolman’s Association President Jeff Follmer said that the shirt was disrespectful, and called Hawkins “pathetic,” the newspaper reported.

“He’s an athlete. He’s someone with no facts of the case whatsoever,” the newspaper quoted Follmer as saying. “He’s disrespecting the police on a job that we had to do and make a split-second decision.”

Follmer also demanded an apology from the Browns, the newspaper said.

The team has not yet responded, the newspaper said.

The team’s response should be, but won’t be, “go fuck yourself.” Maybe if your officers didn’t gun down innocent people, we wouldn’t have to call for justice for them. And the fact that you got your precious fee fees hurt over it kinda pales in comparison to what the families of the people you murdered have to go through. Suck it up, buttercup. And then shut the fuck up.

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  • moarscienceplz

    Cleveland Police Want an Apology

    Ummm, OK.

    Dear Cleveland police department,

    I’m really, really sorry you seem to have a bunch of racists and violent thugs in your ranks.

    Get better soon.

  • dugglebogey

    Why would anyone want an apology for someone’s desire for justice?

    Someone asks for what is right, and you want an apology for that? Does that not make it obvious what your real motives are?

  • Loqi

    You’ll get your apology once you bring the victims back from the dead. And somehow erase all the anguish caused. Maybe invent a time machine and prevent the event from occurring. Though then there’d be no need for an apology.

    Oh fuck it. No. You don’t get an apology.

  • hoku

    Actually the teams response was pretty good.

    “We have great respect for the Cleveland Police Department and the work that they do to protect and serve our city. We also respect our players’ rights to project their support and bring awareness to issues that are important to them if done so in a responsible manner.”

  • John Pieret

    How very insulting it is to the police that anyone might expect justice from them!!!

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    A police union in Ohio criticized football player Andrew Hawkins for wearing a shirt protesting the fatal police shooting in November of a 12-year-old African-American boy who was carrying a pellet gun, the Cleveland Plain Dealer newspaper reported.

    Ones like this always tear me.

    On the one hand, after Tamir Rice was reported waving a gun in a public park, there was no attempt to deescalate by police, and John Crawford, held up a gun in a Walmart.

    On the other hand, the Second Amendment (and, in both cases, Open Carry) doesn’t apply to black people.

     

    The police union in Cleveland, where the police force has just been found to have a long and serious track record of excessive use of force in a DOJ investigation…

    Kudos to them. It takes balls to use excessive of force in a DOJ investigation.

  • http://kamakanui.zenfolio.com Kamaka

    The police want an apology? Sure thing. We’ve made arrangements for your very special apology to be delivered by LeBron James.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1360322113 aaronbaker

    It gets worse. This ambulatory pustule Follmer was on the Chris Hayes show last night, blaming Tamir Rice and his family for the shooting and saying the video makes clear the coppers were justified. It was apparently the boy’s fault, too, that the copper thought he was twenty. Charmingly, he kept calling a twelve-year old child “the male” throughout the interview.

    If you vomit easily, don’t watch it. It may be worse than Cheney on torture.

  • Doug Little

    I was just in a mild altercation with the cops in Cleveland at a night club. A guy took a swing at a buddy of mine and when I went to step in another guy got in my face and shoved me. I shoved him back and got ready to throw down when he pulled a badge and then decided to announce that he was undercover. So, so glad that I managed to extract myself from the situation before anything serious happened.

  • http://motherwell.livejournal.com/ Raging Bee

    If these assholes can’t handle being cops under US law, maybe they should transfer to the Moscow PD instead.

  • Nemo

    I saw Follmer on All In with Ari Melber last night. He is not a smart man, and he was not smart to appear on this show. One of the panelists afterwards politely described him as “decent”, but I have to say, I didn’t see that at all; he struck me as an ignorant thug. But the thought that really disturbed me was, this is the president of his local union? Can this really be the best Cleveland’s Finest have to offer?

  • Cuttlefish

    Andrew Hawkins had his own response to the Cleveland police: http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/andrew-hawkins-response-tamir-rice-protest

    My favorite quote:

    “To clarify, I utterly respect and appreciate every police officer that protects and serves all of us with honesty, integrity and the right way. And I don’t think those kind of officers should be offended by what I did. My mom taught me my entire life to respect law enforcement. I have family, close friends that are incredible police officers and I tell them all the time how they are much braver than me for it. So my wearing a T-shirt wasn’t a stance against every police officer or every police department. My wearing the T-shirt was a stance against wrong individuals doing the wrong thing for the wrong reasons to innocent people.

    “Unfortunately, my mom also taught me just as there are good police officers, there are some not-so-good police officers that would assume the worst of me without knowing anything about me for reasons I can’t control. She taught me to be careful and be on the lookout for those not-so-good police officers because they could potentially do me harm and most times without consequences. Those are the police officers that should be offended.

  • garnetstar

    Hawkins’ shirt said something about wanting justice. That’s all. It’s not an insult to anyone to want that, actually.

  • Pieter B, FCD

    Funny how when it’s a black male with something that looks like a gun, police “have to make a split-second decision,” but when it’s a white guy with a real loaded rifle shouting threats at neighbors and police they can take 40 minutes to persuade him to put it down, as happened a while back in Kalamazoo. After they had the rifle, he refused a Breathalyzer test, and he was released without being arrested. The next day he was given his rifle back.

  • zmidponk

    You know, if I was Hawkins, I would be very tempted to word my apology like this:

    I am very, very, sorry that I wore that T-shirt on that one occasion. I should have worn it every day.

  • scienceavenger

    When you put on the badge, you don’t shoot at a child unless the child shoots at you first. Period. You want us to listen to all this “lay your life on the line every day for us” talk, we need to see you walk the walk. Any idiot can shoot at anyone who poses the slightest risk to them. You’re supposed to have training and such.

  • StonedRanger

    Im sorry that as the president of the police union you support and condone the committing of murder by police in your union.

    Im sorry that you are nothing but a thug with no empathy for the dead children killed by your officers.

    Im sorry that you do not understand that the constitution that you are sworn to defend and uphold.

    Im sorry youre just a fucking douchebag.

    I could go on, but it would just be redundant.

    Fuck the police and fuck you very much Mr. Follmer.

  • dugglebogey

    How about

    “I’m sorry you are against justice.”

    Then it would be true!

  • Al Dente

    If I were Hawkins I’d be very tempted to say: “I refer you to the reply given in Arkell v. Pressdram.”

  • DaveL

    See, you really need to be sure you have all the facts before you gun down a twelve-year-old put on a T-shirt.

  • http://itsmyworldcanthasnotyours.blogspot.com WMDKitty — Survivor

    Fuck the police!

    If ANYONE should be apologizing, it’s the goddamn piggies!

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    I don’t see a comment yet on the supposition that it’s somehow impossible for a professional athlete to not be sufficiently informed about the events. What the fuck?

    I always love to quote this one line by Spock. “If I were human, I believe my response would be ‘go to hell’ – if I were human.”

  • smrnda

    Cops.

    You are public servants. Your opinions about how you do your job are irrelevant. Ours are, unless this really is a police state and your reactions to calls for accountability seem to suggest that you wish it was. Good cops? If there were good cops calls for an end to racist policies like stop and frisk and a request for greater accountability wouldn’t have come from outside. If there were good cops and they spoke up, they probably got fired.

  • Nemo

    Interesting, turns out Follmer is a lame duck:

    Follmer will exit the presidency at the end of the year after being ousted in a vote against former CPPA president Steve Loomis — Follmer lost by 300 votes.

    http://www.clevescene.com/scene-and-heard/archives/2014/12/15/jeff-follmer-is-pathetic

    Also, the Cleveland Chief of Police has repudiated Follmer’s statements:

    It is important to note that the comments made by Mr. Folmer do not represent the views of the Cleveland Division of Police. The Division of Police respects the rights of individuals to peacefully demonstrate their personal views and opinions. Mr. Hawkins was certainly well within his rights to express his views and no apology is necessary.

    http://fox8.com/2014/12/16/no-apology-is-necessary-cleveland-police-chief-responds-to-players-t-shirt/

  • kenn

    “Cops! They can’t catch a cold.” — Bart Simpson

    Or a clue.

  • eric

    He’s disrespecting the police on a job that we had to do and make a split-second decision

    Yes, because the officer’s split-second decsion was to fire on a 12-year-old rather than, say, find cover and see whether he’s actually got a real gun. We should disrepect that decision.

  • Kermit Sansoo

    Dear Cleveland Police:

    .

    I’m terribly, terribly sorry. I should never have expected you to have an interest in justice, and I promise that it will never happen again.

    .

    Sincerely, your friend,

    The Cleveland Browns

  • Crimson Clupeidae

    The reply to the Pig union was the best:

    No apology should be demanded for a request for justice.

  • http://www.facebook.com/park.james.102 parkjames

    The Browns should have responded the same way they responded to someone else making terrible points:

    http://www.clevescene.com/images/blogimages/2010/12/22/1293036840-picture_755.png

  • Michael Heath

    smrdna:

    Cops.

    You are public servants. Your opinions about how you do your job are irrelevant. Ours are, unless this really is a police state . . .

    The opinion of law enforcement is critically important if we’re going to optimize public policy when it comes to liberty, security, and a host of other issues.

    The problem isn’t law enforcement expressing an opinion, but instead that their opinion is both incredibly shitty and reveals the rank incompetence of police, prosecutors, legislators, non-liberal voters, and the executive branch at the federal, state, and local level when it comes to law enforcement.