If we’ve heard it once, we’ve heard it a hundred times — don’t write something on a social networking site or the Internet that you wouldn’t want broadcast to the masses. Apparently some police officers and public employees in Harrison haven’t gotten the message yet after derogatory and racist comments they wrote on Facebook were revealed and printed in today’s Journal News. Read the whole story here, as well as view a screen grab of one of the officer’s facebook pages with some of the comments, including those about Town Supervisor Joan Walsh.
Meanwhile, on the forums, readers are engaging in a lively debate about free speech, whether underlying prejudices in public employees hinder their ability to do their job and the Keystone Cop-esque nature of some members of the Harrison police force.
Here’s what they have to say:
This is appalling behavior by public law enforcement employees. They should not have the privilege to have these jobs. There should be no tolerance for this heinous behavior.
Whatever happened to freedom of speech, and freedom of thought? This whole thing is funny. It’s time for (Walsh) to retire anyhow, stay home and play with her grandkids.
For all the people championing the First Amendment: When you wear a uniform, such as a police officer or firefighter, you must balance your freedom of speech with the risk of insubordination. A general code of conduct limits what you can say or write about a superior in a chain of command.