As the protests have spread to every single state in the U.S. and gone worldwide, maybe the police should rethink their actions against the very people they are supposed to protect and serve. This should be a time for reflection, but some police officers have been caught on camera being abusive and sometimes violent toward protesters who are marching against the brutal killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police officers.
While Donald Trump lashes out at media outlets daily, the abuse journalists have taken is through the roof. And to see police officers adding to the abuse is startling. Two Associated Press journalists were the recipients of abuse in New York as officers surrounded and shoved them while yelling expletives as they covered the protests on Tuesday, the AP reports.
Part of that exchange was caught on video by videojournalist Robert Bumsted, who was working with photographer Maye-E Wong to document the protests in Manhattan. More than six police officers confronted the journalists while they were filming and taking photographs as police ordered protesters to vacate the area before the curfew was to take place.
One officer used an expletive and ordered them to go home, even though the journalists were wearing AP identification and identified themselves. Bumsted can be heard on the video telling the officers that the press is considered “essential workers” and are allowed to be on the streets.
An officer responded to say, “I don’t give a shit.” Another officer told Bumsted “get the fuck out of here you piece of shit.”
Bumsted and Wong said that the police officers shoved them and separated them from each other and pushing them toward Bumsted’s car, which was parked nearby, according to the news outlet. Bumsted said that at one point, he was pinned against his car. He is heard on the video explaining to the officer that Wong has his keys, and he needs them to leave the area. The two journalists eventually got into the vehicle and left the area.
“They didn’t care,” Wong said. “They were just shoving me.”
NYPD officials, according to the AP, said they would “review this as soon as possible.”
Minnesota State Police last week detained a CNN crew while they were covering the protests in Minneapolis, and that incident was caught on camera, too. The black reporter was arrested for doing his job and later released.
We realize the police have a very stressful job, but journalists do, too, and they do not need added abuse.
Featured image via screen capture
Like what you see here? Join the discussion on Facebook over at Americans For Sanity!