EDITORIAL CARTOON: Serve, don't slur

Posted at 4:31 PM, Jan 04, 2019

Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley, Cincinnati Police Department Chief Elliot Isaac and others spoke at a press conference Friday morning about legislation that would require city employees to undergo "implicit and explicit bias" training.

The announcement arrived on the heels of two Cincinnati Police officers — one black, one white — facing discipline for using the N-word while arresting black suspects. The officers are currently restricted to desk duty while the incidents are investigated.

Some might say the word was used in the heat of arrests. Some might say that we have to take into context the fact that one of the officers is black himself.

The underlying fact is this should never have happened at all.

The N-word — really, any racial or ethnic slur — is meant to be dehumanizing. The last thing we need from police officers is for them to dehumanize those they're arresting. We need to be confident that they are serving everyone equally and setting an example for our community.

That the mayor and other city officials felt we needed to have a press conference to reiterate that racial slurs won't be tolerated speaks volumes. This issue shouldn't be something that has to be addressed in front of cameras and microphones, but here we are.

So, if I may, here's some friendly advice: If you're the type of person who has to be reminded not to use racial slurs, maybe you shouldn't be a police officer.

Kevin Necessary is the editorial cartoonist for WCPO. His opinions do not represent those of WCPO.