By Hadassa Kalatizadeh
The Sergeants Benevolent Association (SBA) is condemning NYPD heads of a “double standard”, after a police officer was suspended from the force for blaring “Trump 2020” over a patrol-car loudspeaker. The union says that the Chief of the department similarly displayed public support for the Black Lives Matter protesters and he was praised for it.
“The NYPD has a history of officers making political & outside the norm statements & ignoring it,” the SBA tweeted on Sunday, while the investigation into Saturday’s incident began. “Suspending this officer is unnecessary & way over the top. Chief of Department took a knee with protestors no disciplinary action was issued,” the SBA wrote referring to Chief Terence Monahan.
As reported by the NY Post, the union went on to attack Monahan directly, retweeting his assertion that officers have to “remain apolitical” adding a picture of him from the NY Post taking a knee with George Floyd protesters on June 1. “What’s the status of this investigation? Oh wait double standard white shirt immunity!” the SBA tweeted. “Terence you said nothing when Captains & Chiefs took a knee with violent protesters who injured members of the NYPD. You say nothing to those who sing & dance in uniform,” the NYC police union fumed on.
The officer, identified as Arthur Becerra of the 70th Precinct, was suspended without pay on Sunday. “Suspended without pay; The police officer who is under investigation for using a department vehicle’s loud speaker for political purposes has been suspended, effective immediately,” the police department tweeted.
It is against the rules of the police department for officers to express political views or endorse candidates while on duty. Police Commissioner Dermot Shea and Mayor Bill de Blasio were swift to condemn videos that showed the officer repeatedly saying “Trump 2020” over his police care speaker in Flatbush, Brooklyn on Saturday night. “Let me be clear: ANY NYPD Officer pushing ANY political agenda while on duty will face consequences. We will act fast here, and this will not be tolerated,” de Blasio said, despite the contrary precedent set with Monahan.
The SBA added that officers are “rightfully” supporting President Trump. “The Democratic Party has abandoned police officers, encouraged violence and lawlessness. People are being murdered in Democratic run cities,” SBA wrote, tagging President Trump and his sons Eric and Don Jr.