police officer white power protest

kikimurphy_/Twitter

Did a police officer throw up a white power hand sign at a protest?

The New York attorney general raised concerns over the video.

May 31, 2020, 7:03 pm

Tech

Esther Bell 

Esther Bell

A video of an NYPD cop seemingly throwing a white power sign is going viral on Twitter.

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The police officer was seen flashing a backward “OK” hand signal, which has come to be associated with the white power movement. It looks like the officer was signing to someone off-camera, and fellow officers laughed in the background.

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The video is from a protest at Union Square in New York City.

Viewers were outraged seeing a police officer seemingly make a reference to white supremacy, especially while people are protesting systematic racism seen in the police forces nationwide.

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“Do they not know they are on camera? Or are they so filled with hate that they don’t care?” reporter Julie Brown questioned.

Many called for the officer to be identified and held accountable, pointing out that white nationalism does not belong in the police forces.

“How about taking action now before the smirking racist a**hole is responsible for another #GeorgeFloyd,” a user tweeted.

Others stated that he “clearlythrew up a white sign.

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New York Attorney General Letitia James raised concerns over the video, requesting citizens report the video and send it to her office.

The “OK” symbol became associated with white supremacists over the last few years after 4chan users decided to troll liberals with it. The outside three fingers make a “w” and the thumb and pointer finger make a “p.” The gesture even made it onto the Anti-Defamation League’s (ADL) list of hate symbols in 2019.

Many are pointing out that, unfortunately, the overlap between white supremacists and police officers is not a rare occurrence. Last year, a Facebook group where countless police officers posted racist, sexist, white supremacist memes was uncovered and spurred internal investigations across the country.

And more recently, after George Floyd died, reporters looked into the head of the Minneapolis police union Lt. Bob Kroll’s past and found he allegedly wore a “white power” patch, and referred to Black Lives Matter as a “terrorist organization,” according to Mother Jones.

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*First Published: May 31, 2020, 7:03 pm