Los Angeles, July 12, 2016—We are absolutely disgusted by the Instagram post of Cleveland Browns Running Back Isaiah Crowell depicting a hooded man slitting the throat of a police officer. To use imagery, clearly meant to replicate the propaganda put out by terrorist organizations such as ISIS, to promote the murder of police officers is reprehensible. (The post has since been deleted from Crowell’s Instagram profile but is still being circulated online.)
There’s no place in our society for the extremist and dangerous rhetoric used by Crowell. It is this type of hatred that fueled the coward who lay in wait to assassinate five law enforcement officers in Dallas last week while wounding seven more. Crowell’s “apology” for his posting rings hollow to anyone who has had a loved one, a friend, or colleague die in the line of duty while protecting the public. Further, writing that you’re sorry does not erase the hurt and pain you inflict on others.
We urge the National Football League to condemn Crowell’s post and to levy the appropriate sanctions against him. We think the imagery chosen used by Crowell goes beyond being “inappropriate” as currently characterized by the NFL. We believe the NFL should hold its players accountable to common decency standards.
Last Thursday, as a nation mourned the largest attack on American law enforcement since the September 11 attack, police officers all across this nation suited up and went on patrol. They did so despite watching the horror play out in Dallas. They did so despite the increase in threats and violent attacks against police officers. They did so because the men and women who serve as police officers choose to put themselves in harm’s way to protect and help others.
We understand that this is an emotional time for many, but that does not excuse promoting violence. In Los Angeles, we value real dialogue and collaboration to ensure that a positive environment exists between police officers and community members. We hope others who seek to lead this dialogue will also condemn the acts of Crowell.
About the LAPPL: Formed in 1923, the Los Angeles Police Protective League (LAPPL) represents the more than 9,900 dedicated and professional sworn members of the Los Angeles Police Department. The LAPPL serves to advance the interests of LAPD officers through legislative and legal advocacy, political action and education. The LAPPL can be found on the Web at www.LAPD.com.