A Cleveland police officer named Matt Cicero took to his Facebook page with the following eloquence:
"Tamir rices momma just want money. Lets make the proper changes……raise your kids not to play with fake guns stupid bitch. All this media because the are notgetting what they want…… Again pleeeeze anyone who does not like what I post…..unfriendly me or block me your not worth my time"
...he has since deleted the remarks and is on paid administrative leave (also known as vacation). He was (is?) a school resource officer in the very district where Tamir attended school before the 12 year old was shot and killed.
The Cleveland Metropolitan School District has called Cicero's comments inappropriate and insensitive, but such adjectives are better suited to lighter matters. It's "inappropriate" to wear pajamas to a cocktail party. This man's words and his toxic attitude toward the families and children he is sworn to protect... these are reflective of a much larger problem. We cannot pretend that there is no relationship between such hateful rhetoric and the police brutality we see playing out in our cities. This "us versus them" mentality is as poisonous as it is pervasive. It is killing our children.
We have a toxic police culture in this country. LeBron James sitting out a game or a few body cameras aren't going to fix this.