An online group dedicated to police officers posted a wildly offensive "memorial" to slain Ferguson, Missouri teenager Michael Brown on the social medium Facebook. After an outcry, it now appears the tasteless post has been removed.
The Free Thought Project reported that the Facebook group Police Officers posted the offensive image in advance of the 1-year anniversary of Brown's slaying at the hands of police officer Darren Wilson.
The image showed a photoshopped gravestone with Brown's dates of birth and death along with a poem that said:
There once was a thug named Brown,
Who bum-rushed a cop with a frown,
Six bullets later,
He met his creator,
Then his homies burnt down the town
Before it was taken down, the post received nearly 4,000 Facebook "likes" and was shared more than 1,700 times.
Some users, however, objected to the post.
"Sorry, while I support my LEO [law enforcement officer] brothers," wrote one commenter, "this is very distasteful. We are above this garbage. Should take down."
The Police Officers administrator replied that "Mike Brown chose his path, one that has lead [sic] this country into complete divisiveness. He's not a martyr, he was a thug, who robbed a clerk then made the adult choice to fight a cop, of which he intended to murder."
"At the end of the day," the post continued, "the person truly responsible for the killing of Mike Brown is Mike Brown himself."
Brown's was one of the factors that touched off the #BlackLivesMatter movement and has remained a bone of contention in the year since.
Officer Wilson was profiled this week in a New Yorker article in which he said he is trying to put the slaying of the unarmed teen behind him and that he and his family are living in anonymity. To avoid conflict, Wilson said when the family dines out, they go to businesses frequented by "like-minded individuals" and restaurants that "aren't a mixing-pot."
The offensive rhyme seems to have originated on a now-banned Reddit community called "CoonTown," but was reprinted on Facebook by the Libertarian group Communism Kills.