Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Justin Barrett's 'Jungle Monkey' Controversy

Some seemingly nasty new developments in the Henry Louis Gates controversy. From CNN, " 'Jungle monkey' E-Mail Jeopardizes Boston Officer's Job":

A Boston, Massachusetts, police officer who sent a mass e-mail in which he referred to Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. as "banana-eating" and a "bumbling jungle monkey" has been placed on administrative leave and faces losing his job.

Officer Justin Barrett, 36, who is also an active member of the National Guard, sent an e-mail to some fellow Guard members, as well as the Boston Globe, in which he vented his displeasure with a July 22 Globe column about Gates' controversial arrest.
The columnist, Yvonne Abraham, supported Gates' actions, asking readers, "Would you stand for this kind of treatment, in your own home, by a police officer who by now clearly has no right to be there?"

In his e-mail, which was posted on a local Boston television station's Web site, Barrett declared that if he had "been the officer he verbally assaulted like a banana-eating jungle monkey, I would have sprayed him in the face with OC [oleoresin capsicum, or pepper spray] deserving of his belligerent noncompliance."

Barrett used the "jungle monkey" phrase four times, three times referring to Gates and once referring to Abraham's writing as "jungle monkey gibberish."

He also declared he was "not a racist but I am prejudice [sic] towards people who are stupid and pretend to stand up and preach for something they say is freedom but it is merely attention because you do not get enough of it in your little fear-dwelling circle of on-the-bandwagon followers."
More at the link.

More at Boston's WFXT-TV FOX25, "
Cop Suspended for Slur in Gates E-Mail."

Hat Tip: Memeorandum.

Related: Radley Balko, "
Response to Patterico and Jack Dunphy."

Image Credit: WFXT-TV FOX25, "
Justin Barrett's E-Mail in Question: Justin Barrett Has Been Suspended by the BPD."


Grizzly Mama said...

Holy Crap! What a stupid-ass!

I hear he was immediately suspended.

Anonymous said...

This guy was an English teacher? Saints preserve us.

Mark30339 said...

So a government body proposes to fire an employee for exercising free speech on his own time? If he were employed by a private employer, the firing would be upheld -- but this is a government firing him because they don't like his speech. See any cause here ACLU?

Unknown said...

Yeah a GOVT employee who is supposed to SERVE AND PROTECT the very people he used a racial epitaph to describe. If he wasn't a police officer or a national guardsman. If he hadn't sent this email to those under his command. He probably wouldn't of had a problem. Personally I'm just as disturbed by his violent tendency towards those that don't "RESPECT MA ATHORATAY!!!" as his racial bias.

Unknown said...

I like the part where he says a the female reporter "needs to be slapped". Class act all around.

Sadly, it's not on his "own" time since he chose to point out that he was in law enforcement and the military (as part of his "credentials".

PS Mark, if you know anything about the law, you'll know where the lines regarding "free speech" are drawn.

Anonymous said...

I served in Iraq with Justin for a year. I never saw any racist tendency. If you think you know him after one e-mail, then go ahead and judge him.

PhilGradStudent said...

Why do people think that the First Amendment entitles you to a job???

Anonymous said...

Well calling someone a
"jungle monkey" constitutes them being judged as a racist. Now if a BLACK person wrote an email calling the WHITE officer a "saltine cracker" or "hunky" that would be racist though right? Give me a break! You white people are sick, its okay for you to talk like that but not any other race. Its not okay for anyone to use any racist comments. If it talks like a duck....

Iserved in Iraq with Justin for a year. I never saw any racist tendency. If you think you know him after one e-mail, then go ahead and judge him.

Dave said...

I take it officer Barrett flunked out of Sgt. Crowley's racial sensitivity course.

Somehow, I am thinking that had officer Barrett been of the African persuasion, and had sent out an email referring to, let's say, Prof. Mike Adams just up the road from me at UNC, as a honky and a cracker multiple times, we wouldn't be hearing about it.


Tom Degan said...

Barrett may be the exception to the rule, but we would be deceiving ourselves were we to conclude that there aren't more than a few cops out there like him.

A number of years ago, I overheard a New York City police officer who was retiring for reasons of health being asked the question, "What is the biggest regret of your career?" His answer:

"My biggest regret is that I never killed a ni**er."

He was actually in a public place when he uttered those words. I am thankful that he's not on the force anymore, too.

"The Rant" by Tom Degan

Anonymous said...

To: "Henry Louis Gates"
Subject: About Horrible Rasssizzm and other stuff.
Date: Mon, 27 Jul 2009 19:52:18 -0700

To blame somebody in Racism or anti-Semitism without very serious proof is like to fart loudly in public places.
I know there are some people who find that very witty, but most people have no respect for such "jokers", even in USA.
Especially for professor is unfitting to act like a monkey in the Zoo, without trace of respect or self-respect.

BTW, James Crowley act like ass, too. I cannot decide who is worse. I think, you are both worse.


I sent this e-mail long before I read about Justin Barrett's letter. As you can clearly see, we have something in common.
If somebody will say now "rassizm", I'll say "politcorrect idiot, kill yourself, make this world better".
Because if somebody is acting like a monkey, I'll call him a monkey, regardless of his skin color or paycheck, or his rank.
And I will not tolerate him even if he is black. Your skin color does not give you right to act like a retard and animal.
I don't have that brain disease called "politcorrectness", so I will call the spade a bloody shovel!