San Francisco Cops Just Can’t Stop Sending Each Other Racist and Homophobic Texts

The San Francisco police force has a bit of a problem. The New York Times reports that even as fourteen police officers are currently being investigated for sending each other text messages that “disparaged gays, women, Mexicans and Filipinos, and proposed lynching blacks,” another group of seven officers is being investigated for sending each other texts that include “derogatory references to blacks, Asians, lesbians, gays and transgender people.”

These text messages were discovered as part of an investigation into the sexual assault of an officer, in which the officer’s cell phones were examined. Police Chief Gregor P. Suhr says that the Department has no tolerance for this kind of prejudice, and says that the officers involved have been disciplined, and two have left the department.

This fiasco, of course, puts the city in a bit of a pickle, as the SFPD is also under federal investigation due complaints that police officers were biased. The Department is accused of “using unnecessary deadly force and brutality, and of focusing enforcement efforts on black neighborhoods while ignoring similar infractions elsewhere.”

The city’s district attorney George Gascón, said that the text messages were a sign that the Department had more of a problem with racism and homophobia than previously thought, and said that these incidents would result in over 100 closed cases being examined for bias.

Also–god help me for thinking this–but this appears not only to be a sign that these officers were racist and homophobic, but also that they probably weren’t very good cops to begin with. You think they’d have some idea that “text messages” were maybe not the best medium to share such feelings. I mean, you’re a police officer, you’re doing something that could probably get you fired–why on earth would you put that in a text message, so that there is a record of it? Especially in the midst of another group of officers getting in trouble over doing just that? Are they stupid? Do they have a death wish?

Overall, the city is clearly better off without these officers, for many reasons.


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