There are people who say that police officers should be held to a higher standard in speech and behavior. And up until 2020, I may have believed you. But the constant bullying and harassment haranguing of police officers to the point where they can barely do their jobs anymore has changed my mind.

In my judgement, the chaos has given police a pass to defend themselves in any way they see fit. By that I mean, using weapons or words. So when a Hopewell Township police officer was fired and another demoted over a Facebook comment in 2020 calling Black Lives Matter supporters “terrorists," I was incensed.

Worse, according to an article by our own Dan Alexander, one cop was punished for “liking” the post. “Liking” is now a serious offense? God help us all.

Shouldn’t a police officer (or any human, for that matter) be allowed to express his or her anger against the very people who express their hatred towards him and his brothers and sisters in uniform every single day?

Should a man (or woman) who puts his or her life on the line be given more latitude—not less—when it comes to “speech” than the average Joe?

Should anyone be allowed to express their opinion of anyone? Or should opinions and preferences now be adjudicated in a court of law?

You can’t legislate love or acceptance. Hate can never be made illegal. Neither can anger. So I guess we’re lucky that these cops were just punished, instead of jailed. But I fear that is next.

The same anger, hate, and frustration that motivates protesters to do the things they do and get away with is forbidden to be expressed by anyone else. Particularly police officers, who the clueless, spoiled brat radicals on the left tell us are bad and should be the object of our contempt.

What is the word that riled up the powers that be that made it necessary for a police officer to lose her job? Was the word, “terrorist?” Is that hate speech? And is using that word to describe a pack of violent protestors grounds for losing one’s job and career? Because, if so, I can show you thousands of Facebook pages that used the word “terrorist” to describe anyone who showed up to Washington, D.C., the day of the Capitol protests, whether they participated or not. Housewives, teachers, doctors, blue collar workers—“Terrorists,” all. Should anyone who referred to them by that unfortunate epithet be fired? Can speech be legislated? I thought we had laws against that.

Moreover, can hate be legislated? Is it still legal to hate someone? Or a group of people? Or should hate and anger in any of its expressions—speech, thought, or action—be made unilaterally illegal? That way, instead of just firing people, they all just get locked up.

I have news for you. Hate is still allowed. In this country, you can hate whomever you want. You can judge whomever you want. And you are allowed to express that hate or that judgment or that anger. Just like protestors do. It’s not pretty, but it’s human.

Who’s in charge here?

Let’s say we immediately end the careers of all people who hate others and express that hate in word or deed. If we do, I guarantee you there will be way more protesters fired than police officers. That’s if these protesters have ever had a job to be fired from in the first place.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Judi Franco. Any opinions expressed are Judi Franco’s own.

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