Where does the good go

One more of these posts and Imma need a tag

Okay, so, now, what if you have a unioned *government* employee who won’t quit tweeting racist comments? Then, what?

* “Too bad he didn’t have rabies or AIDS and too bad he didn’t bite King Heeb’s face off,” he tweeted on Groundhog Day, Feb. 2, recalling when the groundhog Staten Island Chuck nipped Bloomberg at an event at the Staten Island Zoo.

* “That’s how King Jew sees it. Ban all guns & shootings will go down in NYC. But it’s the criminals w/the guns,” he ranted Jan. 30.

* A gold Nazi-era pin with a German U-boat and a swastika is “my most prized artifact,” he boasted on Jan. 30.

* “He was a good boy who never done NUFFIN wrong. Unf–kenreal. He was a perp & died like a perp. Oh well,” he tweeted March 14, mocking the grieving mother of Kimani Gray, the 16-year-old boy who was killed by cops in Brooklyn on March 9.

My friend Daniel’s friend Sam (they are super adorable and should have a show on IFC called “Sam & Dan” which chronicles their coffee shop visits. The first episode would be a lady yelling at Dan to turn down the music on his headphones and Sam punching her in the face. Um…with words.) Anyway, Sam asked the question, what if it were an African-American fireman tweeting “ugh, these white people get on my nerves”? I’d go even further and ask, what if it were an African-American EMT tweeting about “n*ggers” or “jews”?

According to that NY Post story, the stance of the union is just to tell its members to stop using social media. But why doesn’t that comfort me in the least? So the racists don’t publicly admit that they hate my black ass…don’t they *still* hate my black ass though… and NOW they’re also pissed off cause they can’t write about how much they hate my black ass.

Oh, but we live in interesting times.

5 Responses to “One more of these posts and Imma need a tag”

  1. Samuel F. Reynolds Says:

    Aww, that was cute about me being Daniel’s friend. (Of course, this is not what happens in real life, but you restored some measure of “cultural” justice to the world–at least for Daniel.)

    Anyway, here’s where I have the bottom line problem with all of this. Your job should be about your arena of performance. If you do something on your job that offends somebody, then your company should be able to weigh, by their own internal methods, what’s wrong with what you did. If an FDNY operator takes away a sick Black person and says, “Okay, let’s get the n*gger in the truck!” then I’m going to have a problem with that. It’s disrespectful to the sick person and to the FDNY. But what he says on his twitter feed on his spare time is not my concern. I’m fine if FDNY is concerned about the PR of one of their employees. But I’m not down for taking people’s jobs about this. I’m not. I think it even causes more problems. It does not promote contrition of one’s racist views. It stokes it. Why would the person be contrite? Yeah, losing one’s job sucks; but losing one’s job for something you haven’t come to feel is wrong breeds bitterness.

    I read the next story about Adria Richards. I feel the same way. I think that dude’s rant on youtube is senseless for the most part, especially when he seems to tackle big concepts about racism and feminism. For instance, I’m with you, Dawn: why are you talking about the “race card?” However, there is absolutely one thing I did agree with him on: why didn’t she just confront them, again, and leave it at that? It’s one thing to stand up for young girls by standing up to those men. I’m with that. It’s another thing to go on a crusade to basically get some people fired because they offended you. When you’re not at your job. When you don’t work with these men. And albeit that these men are in your industry, they are not in your life.

    But I’m not blaming Adria for them getting fired, because her crusade to get them fired didn’t have to equal them getting fired. I’m side-eyeing employers. I don’t have one, so I’m relieved of this issue as an entrepreneur/independent contractor. *Whew, cuz I say some things on twitter that I’m pretty sure would get me fired.* However, I don’t think I should get fired for what I say on my own dime unless somehow I’m the brand. That’s more the ongoing intrusiveness of corporate culture in all dimensions of our lives and that’s been happening for a long time. And it seems to be real selective and sketchy as who qualifies as worthy of being dragged out for having private views on their social media that we don’t like.

    When I go to Wal-mart in the burbs of NJ, I’m sure I could find some employee of the month who tweets complete racist ratchetry. Should she lose her job? No, and she won’t because no one cares about her. She might bag the purchases of 1000s of Black folk or people of color after calling them “porch monkeys” on twitter and no one cares. Good. I don’t care. I don’t have to follow her on twitter and as long she doesn’t call me a porch monkey to my face, we’re cool. And if she did, I’d still want her to face some kind of penalty that’s commensurate to the offense. If I overhear her calling me a “porch monkey” to another employee, though she in her own trailer park way thought she was being discreet, I wouldn’t want her fired. I’d want any number of things, ranging from some diversity training, to docking, to an unpaid leave for a few days, to whatever. But having this woman, who probably gets $10-$20/hr, out of work can’t be great for her family or her own life. And, yeah, sure maybe she’ll think twice about saying something racist. But getting her fired means that she’ll probably think twice the number of racist thoughts and share those in other ways. None of which will address the issue.

    Daniel, my friend: what do you think?

  2. Dawn Summers Says:

    Yeah, I agree. I started really thinking about this issue after the election. There was this group that started searching for n word plus obama and reporting any tweets coming from an .edu address to their schools. Those tweets, apparently, violate all school usage codes, so those students lost academic scholarships and were kicked out. Now, they were saying some foul shit, so I didn’t really shed any tears for them… but it did make me wonder.

  3. Daniel J Says:

    bwahahaha i do wanna watch that show esp if it involves Sam throwing down at the coffee shop lmaooo…
    OK anyway:
    Customer service is not patient care. I don’t GAF what WalMart lady thinks because all she does is ring up some shit and send me on my way, fine go be racist in your spare time. She’s not a) making life and death decisions about other people or b) a city employee.
    An FDNY Lt is both of those things and while I’d rather the people taking care of NYers aren’t racist, there’s not much I can do about that. I would like them to be competent though regardless of what their opinions are, and if you’re gonna be a racist neo-nazi troll AND incompetent enough to broadcast that to the world in the age of Anthony Weiner and every other idiot…well, you gotta go. Mind you, dude kept tweeting racist trollery AFTER the EMT got busted for it last week.

    Also keep in mind, it’s not all that sure he’ll be fired. I have my doubts. FDNY is civil service and they are harderthanamothafucka to fire. Lieutenants have been caught ON DUTY IN UNIFORM doing everything from having sex, to getting high to beating their wives to stealing hubcaps, I’m deadass serious, and not been fired.

    So look, all these cases are different. Just because I think this one dude should go doesn’t necc mean i think everyone should get fired for what they do off duty on line. Obviously, I tweet plenty of shit about the job and i could probably get fired for it for one dumb reason or another, but none of it violates patient confidentiality and it’s at worst sarcastic.

    There. You. Have it.

  4. Consi Says:

    I don’t believe he should be fired. He is not speaking on the job, nor is his speech related to his job. As I read the law, firing him would violate his First Amendment right to speak. Berger v. Battaglia, 779 F.2d 992 (4th Cir. 1985), cert. denied, 476 U.S. 1159 (1986). (a police department could not condition the continued employment of one of its police officers upon his cessation of off-duty public entertainment performances in blackface). But see Pereira v. Comms’r of Social Servs, 432 Mass. 251 (firing of a social worker upheld for telling a racist joke.)

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