Black firefighter Terrell Paci says that he was racially profiled by police and harassed earlier this week in Rhode Island. Paci was wearing his full uniform and sitting in a car outside his fire station with a friend, when two officers approached with guns drawn, shouting at him.
The officer on the driver’s side started screaming “Where’s the gun, is there a gun” and I was like “I’m a firefighter. I’m PFD, I’m one of you. I’m a firefighter.”
The officers demanded to search the car, even after confirming he was a firefighter. Firefighters are not allowed to carry guns while on duty.
Providence firefighters defended Paci in a post to Facebook:
This situation makes clear that even in uniform – a young black man is not immune from the impact of systemic, institutional racism. While we value our working relationship with the Providence Police, and know there are many officers who are working to change police culture, this incident proves that there is more work to be done.
Here’s the best part. A business in Rhode Island decided that the way to a policeman’s brain was through their stomach. Allie’s Donuts announced that they will stop offering their customary discount to police.
Ouch! That’s got to hurt!
The owner of the donut shop further addressed police, saying “Thank you for your service, and shame on your for your silence.” He later released the following statement:
Times are tough. People everywhere feel unsafe, threatened, and unprotected in their community due to the color of their skin and — regarding those involved in community protection — the style of their working uniforms.
Allie’s Donuts believes the time is now to come together to find solutions to what has created so much fear and strife. Together, as those with voices speak up, the people that can make a difference, will, indeed, make that difference.
Personally, I think they should have continued to give police the discount, but only if they sported a prominent “Black Lives Matter” bumper sticker on their police car.