A police union chief in New York City is tired of the “disgusting” way cops like him are being treated like “animals and thugs” since the death of George Floyd on 25 May.
Mike O’Meara is president of the New York Police Benevolent Association – the largest labor union representing police officers in the NYPD – and gave the scathing speech on Tuesday. He said:
Everybody’s trying to shame us. The legislators, the press – everybody’s trying to shame us into being embarrassed.
Pulling out his police badge, O’Meara continued:
But you know what? This isn’t stained by someone in Minneapolis. It’s still got a shine on it and so do theirs… stop treating us like animals and thugs and start treating us with some respect. That’s what we’re here today to say.
We’ve been left out of the conversation, we’ve been vilified [and] it’s disgusting. Trying to make us embarrassed of our profession.
O’Meara went on to say that the NYPBA does not condone what the police officer who killed Floyd did:
We roundly reject what he did as disgusting... It’s not what we do [and] it’s not what police officers too.
He then turned around to the group of police officers behind him and said he will be “proud to be a cop” until the day he retires.
In response to the speech, many called out the police union chief for not reading the tone of the room:
In response, Timothy Burke (Twitter user @bubbaprog) used the speech and spliced together videos of police brutality over the last two weeks since Floyd’s death:
George Floyd’s funeral was held on Tuesday, with a reported 500 people attending the service.
Floyd’s niece, Brooke Williams, told the crowd, “This is not a murder, but a hate crime.”