Last week, Donald Trump’s comments in which he encouraged police to take a more aggressive approach when arresting suspects was just the latest in a string of distasteful speech coming from the president. While several police departments issued statements distancing themselves from Trump’s remarks, the White House press secretary says Trump was just making a funny.
“I believe he was making a joke at the time,” Sarah Sanders told reporters in the White House briefing room.
READ Donald Trump Encourages Police To “Not Be So Nice” When Arresting Suspects
While on Long Island, Trump spoke at a rally with hundreds of members of law enforcement, telling them to “not be so nice” while guiding a suspect’s head inside the back of a police car. “When you guys put somebody in the car and you’re protecting their head, you know, the way you put their hand over?” Trump said. “Don’t hit their head, and they just killed somebody — don’t hit their head … I said, you can take the hand away, OK?”
Trump continued, “I have to tell you… the laws are so horrendously stacked against us, because for years and years they’ve been made to protect the criminal. Totally made to protect the criminal. Not the officers. You do something wrong, you’re in more jeopardy than they are,” Trump said.
Several police departments across the country condemned Trump’s statements, claiming his rhetoric only plays into the belief that all cops are bad cops. “While any elected official can give their views on how police should do their jobs, it is the actions of police officers that speak directly to who we are,” Montgomery Police Chief J. Tom Manger said.