These Chicago cops took a knee to protest, and were punished for doing it

A Chicago community activist posted the photograph of two officers taking a knee and raising their arms in protest

By Matthew Rozsa
September 26, 2017 7:01PM (UTC)
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(Getty/Scott Olson)

A pair of Chicago police officers are in a bit of hot water after taking a knee and raising their fists in the air in solidarity with NFL players in the series of protests seen over the weekend.

The officers appeared in an Instagram photo posed by an account owned by Chicago community activist Aleta Clark, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. Clark has become a local celebrity for selling T-shirts opposing police violence against racial minorities, which include the slogans "Hugs Not Slugs."


The caption under the picture reads: "That Moment when you walk into the police station and ask the Men of Color are they Against Police Brutality and Racism & they say Yes… then you ask them if they support Colin Kapernick [sic]… and they also say yes… then you ask them to Kneel!"

The accuracy of Clark's account has not been confirmed by the officers themselves, however.

"We cannot offer speculation about the officer's political views," explained the Chicago Police Department's Office of Communications in an email to Salon.


In an official statement, the Chicago Police Department said that they were "aware of the photo, and we will address it in the same way we have handled previous incidents in which officers have made political statements while in uniform, with a reprimand and a reminder of department policies."

Matthew Rozsa

Matthew Rozsa is a staff writer for Salon. He holds an MA in History from Rutgers University-Newark and is ABD in his PhD program in History at Lehigh University. His work has appeared in Mic, Quartz and MSNBC.

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Activism Black Lives Matter Chicago Police Department Nfl Protests Racism