‘Shoot the Cops’ Graffiti Appears in Austin, TX – Days Before Dueling Anti/Pro-Police Rallies
The Ku Klux Klan, the NAACP, Black Lives Matter, Police Lives Matter, malicious vandalism and a call to kill police officers are all in the mix in Austin, Texas this month as pro and anti-police rallies are scheduled to be held in the Texas state capital this coming Saturday–all in the backdrop of a white Texas sheriff’s deputy execution in cold blood by a Black man last month.
A photograph of graffiti with a ‘shoot the cops’ message was posted to Facebook by the Austin Police Association on Tuesday, according to KTBC-TV reporter Noelle Newton who posted the photo to Twitter. The graffiti was reportedly found in South Austin.
The Austin Police Association just posted this photo on Facebook. It was spotted in South Austin. pic.twitter.com/c2qcdGVorX
— Noelle Newton (@NoelleNewtonn) September 15, 2015
The graffiti reads:
“SHOOT THE COPS
“OINK OINK BANG BANG
“BLACK LIVES MATTER”
KLBJ-AM/FM reported on the graffiti with a statement from Austin Police Aassociation President Ken Casaday. Casaday said the graffit was found by an officer responding to a 911 call at a South Austin convenience store who saw it on the back of a bathroom door at the store.
“Casaday said the note was discovered by an officer who responded to a 9-1-1 call at the store and went to use the restroom. He says they’re now working to identify who wrote it.”
The posting of the ‘shoot the cops/Black Lives Matter’ photo by the Austin Police Association came soon after Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo made a statement, reported by KVUE-TV praising Black Lives Matter as a peaceful movement that does not wish to harm police.
“”All they want is to have police officers that are respectful, that treat people as part of the community and don’ treat them like they’re an occupying army and we get that,” Acevedo said.
“He also said the group as a whole is getting an undeserved bad reputation.
“”There’s some people trying to hijack that movement by saying things like we should go kill cops, we should just kill white people. That’s just crazy people, those aren’t legitimate members of Black Lives Matter,” Acevedo added.”
Acevedo spoke after having separate meetings with representatives from two groups, Police Lives Matter and Black Lives Matter, that are set to hold dueling rallies in Austin on Saturday.
Earlier this month a young Black man who was a Black lives Matter activist was arrested for threatening to ‘kill all the white people’ in LaPlata, Maryland.
On Monday another Black man who was a Black Lives Matter activist shot and killed Kentucky State Trooper Joseph Cameron Ponder.
Several thousand Police Lives Matters supporters participated in a peaceful march last Saturday in Houston to honor Harris County Sheriff’s Deputy Darren Goforth who was assassinated in uniform at a Houston area gas station last month.
‘Cop killer’ graffiti was also seen in Houston in the days after Deputy Goforth was assassinated.
Nelson Linder, a spokesman for the Austin chapter of the NAACP, said the phrase ‘police lives matter’ is seen by some as ‘threatening’ and ‘confrontaional’. Linder made his comments in an interview with KTBC about the recent malicious vandalism to a family’s pick-up truck that proudly had ‘Police Lives Matter’ painted across its rear window.
‘Black Lives Matter’ and profanities were spray-painted on the truck with about $5,000 in damage and theft done to the truck.
“Nelson Linder with the Austin chapter of the NAACP says that phrase (all lives matter) and “Police lives matter” distracts from the “Black lives matter” movement.
“”Look I’m pretty mature. I understand what folks are trying to say…but it’s a problem because what you’re doing is really subconsciously, you’re saying that black lives don’t matter and I’m saying ‘Why even do that?’ You know, I respect everybody,” Linder said.
“Linder says the signs saying “Police lives matter” may be seen as confrontational to many people. He says of course any form of vandalism is frowned upon by the NAACP.
“”I don’t see any evidence of people targeting the police. It’s a tough time in this country. These issues need to be addressed in an honest way, a respectful way. But to try to compare the two, to me is very problematic and there are folks out there who will see that as a threat and they’ll act inappropriately. I’m worried about that aspect of it,” Linder said.“
The Ku Klux Klan got in on the action by leafletting a South Austin neighborhood last week, reported the Austin American-Statesman.
“Some residents of the neighborhood had expressed anger last weekend after they received recruiting pamphlets from the Ku Klux Klan on their doorsteps. A Klan spokesman told the American-Statesman last week that a KKK recruitment effort was underway because of all the “racial tension” in America. The spokesman said efforts to take down the Confederate flag were “erasing white history” and also spoke out against the “mixing” of the races.”
The American-Statesman reported a group called Undoing Racism Austin responded by going through the same neighborhood offering to put up Black Lives Matter yard signs. Forty-three residents agreed to have the signs in their yards.
Late this afternoon Noelle Newton posted an update to Twitter with the location of the convenience store where the graffiti was found and with news of an investigation.
— Noelle Newton (@NoelleNewtonn) September 15, 2015