An Open Letter to San Jose Police Officer Phillip White (The Cop Who Threatened Protesters and Mocked #ICantBreathe)

San Jose Police Officer Phillip White put out a series of tweets threatening and mocking protesters. He wrote, "“By the way if anyone feels they can’t breathe or their lives matter I’ll be at the movies tonight, off duty, carrying my gun.” He also wrote he had a, " “God given and law appointed right and duty to kill." Read De-Bug contributor Whitney Felton's letter to Officer White. Below the article is a link to the petition to #FireWhiteNow.


What about black people stating that their lives matter inspires you to reach for your firearm? Is it our unwillingness to be irrelevant? Our want and yearning to be free and heard? Is it our newfound strength in loving ourselves so threatening that your only response is to threaten our lives and our education? Phillip, just the other day you stated that our sisters at Cal Berkeley should not speak up about their right to live like any other American due to possible protests from tax paying cops. I guess when a human is taxed with having our skin complexion, one is only useful to you while we are on some sort of court or field, playing a jester, or singing…our lives are just here for your convenience, is that correct?

Sorry to disappoint you, White, but I for one do not have any desire to live to entertain you. My life does matter, and it is not in contingency with my appeasing you. Or your racist cop friends. The simple fact that tweeting a worldwide threat to those who are fighting for their right to live seemed like a proper response tells me that I might find a few civilian complaints on your record. How many “thugs” have you roughed up in your day? Tell me, was the crime “walking down the street while homeless”, or were there just too many black and brown people together at one time? Believe it or not, I know cops like you. I’ve watched them patrol the streets, kick little kids off of the bus because they felt like it, stand baffled when someone is not afraid of them. We have to pass the attitude test, right? Well, we’re sick of your attitude test. We’re sick of being tried after our murder. We’re sick of our lives being in jeopardy due to your lack of training, sociological stability, and distaste for our complexion. 

Only crooked, distasteful and morally robbed police officers feel as if this is a war on cops. Contrary to your guilt ridden beliefs, this is not about revenge. This is about creating a safer environment, where you, Philip, will not be able to continue under the premise of protecting and serving our community while threatening your citizens who pay your salary because you don’t like how they practice their first amendment. And before you bring up looting and rioting, be sure to reflect on the jokes you tweeted about a “disco inferno”; be sure to separate the peaceful protesters who are arrested and the looters who magically have not been arrested. Your comments are distasteful, disgraceful, and a hindrance to your brothers in blue. As naïve as I would like to be, I know there are many in your position who share your sentiments; and they too should not be allowed to protect and serve with prejudice. 

Phillip White, it stops now. You will be our poster child of all things that we fight to change. Police brutality will stop now. The selection of who to protect and serve and who to demonize will stop now. The revolution will continue. It has not been televised; but as you have learned today, Phillip, it will be tweeted.

Sign and Share the Petition to Fire Officer White

This article is part of the category: Protect Your People: Running De-Bug Coverage on the Movement to End Police Violence, Including the Killings of Mike Brown and Erick Garner 
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White Supremacy = Fear, insecurity, self-worth entirely dependent on de-valuing another human being, leading to hate, terror, loss of the soul = Mr. White.

Really? When police officers could be doing something positive, this idiot goes on a rant that is only proving the protesters' point. Please fire his ass.

Take this puto's shield away, he ain't my public servant. I'll protect my own.

White supremacy must fall. And this guy needs to take a history class or two.

"Only crooked, distasteful and morally robbed police officers feel as if this is a war on cops."

I'd love to know how you came to that conclusion. Or what you base that on. Because I'd say about 95% of the cops feel as if there is a major public undertaking against police and the law. I know I do. And no I'm not crooked, distasteful, or morally robbed.

Funny how you demand and preach the first amendment protects what you say, what about him? He cannot be protected all the same? He's exercising the first, and apparently the second.

While I stood on line at the protests in SF, know what I was told? That people hoped I was murdered in front of my children. That people hoped my wife killed herself and my kids. They hoped female cops were raped snd killed. They wished evil deaths upon everyone, and were more than graphic. Was that not also free speech? It was horrific speech, and far worse that what some San Jose cop said. Will you not stand up against that as well?

This hits home because my son plays on the Menlo Basketball team he is one of the two black players on the team.

My son mentioned to me that something had changed this year and now we know why. Last year he started in several games as a Freshman and contributed greatly overall to the team.This year he is sitting on the bench and gets very little playing time.

A few weeks ago, he overheard Coach White talking to parents outside the locker room at Menlo and basically articulating to the parents 'Why The Ferguson verdict was justifiable'. Everyone has their right to 'Freedom of Speech' and I would never want to have that right suppressed for anyone including Coach White. But one would have to question a Coach's sensitivity and professionalism under those circumstances.

In addition to overhearing the conversation outside the Locker Room my son had to confront a few players inside the Locker Room who made racially insensitive remarks regarding the demeanor of young black men walking around with their hands in their pants - referring to Mike Brown - and that the police officer probably thought that Mike Brown had a gun. But that is not all: One of the players called my son lazy...'out of the blue'. My son had a few choice words for a couple of the players but thankfully the situation did not escalate further. My son was very remorseful that the incident happened. He prayed afterwards and asked for forgiveness. I was extremely very proud of him.

That aforementioned episode seemed very strange to me - I thought that someone had instilled some very negative things in the minds of some of the players. I can only surmise the worse now.

Prior to the beginning of this year the Menlo College has been a good experience for my son. Oh! let me not forget that part of reason why he had to sit for a few games in the beginning of this season - he was failing in his Economics class which was his own doing or lack thereof. He has since turned that around and he has 3.0. Nevertheless he still sits the bench and the young man can flat out play.

Though in hindsight having my son sit because of his grades was one of the most valuable lesson in his young life and it was a 'wake-up' call for him.

We must instill in our youth the value of education which will take ninety-nine percent of them much further in life. We must also remember that there will always be hate and haters and it comes in all hues of color i.e. white, black, yellow, brown etc. God wants us to love unconditionally and that includes Coach White.

peace tb

@ madness • December 15, 2014, 10:53 a.m:

Initially, let me say I'm sorry to hear about the abuse you withstood while standing in line at the SF protests. I hope and expect that those protestors who were abusive to you did not represent the majority view - but I'm sure it's a terrible thing to have to hear and stand still for even if it's just one person. I have always been impressed that SFPD handles protestors so much better than other agencies, and the fact that you stood your ground and did not engage in violence against verbally abusive protestors shows your professionalism and respect for the law.

However, I take issue with your characterization that "there is a major public undertaking against police and the law." For 3 reasons.
First, the protests are not against law - they are seeking instead to have the law enforced. Those who commit murder should face consequences. People do not see that law being enforced; instead there is a sense that innocent victims -- even 12 year olds -- can be murdered at random with no consequences.
Second, to the extent your statement equates police with "the law," I think that's a very dangerous way of thinking. In fascist or tyrannical countries, police have the power to do whatever they want and they are indeed "the law." In the US, the Courts say what the law is and quite often it turns out police were in the wrong. A police officer is there to enforce the law, but an order from a police officer is worthless if it's not grounded in the statutes and on the right side of the Constitution. Finally, I don't see a war on police. And the writer is correct that it is scary that police see it that way. I do think there is a movement to rein in police who ignore the limits on their lawful power; and a movement to demand accountability from police officers who kill. Police who truly respect the law -- as it seems you do -- should applaud those efforts. Like the Richmond Chief, they should join the protestors in fighting for a police force that truly is in accord with what you call "the law."

We demand an even Further Review. We know there are More Undesirables involved in this isue. This Disgraceful Philip White surely has a "clique" of Close Associates who Agree and Share his deplorable beliefs while "pretending" to protect! He is just the "beginning" of the well known Disgrace in the San Jose Police Dept. There are Many More "APPLES" falling from this tree!, Believe that! We read nowhere he is a "Loner" therefore he has close friends in "the Force" "BIRDS OF A FEATHER STICK TOGETHER!" BTW, none of us in the Public would continue to be Paid under these same Circumstances. Fire him Now!, MAYOR, CHEIF, ETC. if not You All are a "Reflection" of him. NO MORE EXCUSES! So Ashamed of SJ GOVT. & SJPD "POLITICS!"

Thank you racist police officer White for shining the racist light on yourself, we appreciate very much. What is troubling to me, is that you have been paid for twenty years by SJPD and no other officer has ever heard you spew your poison. My feeling is that this is a cultural problem within the police department and there are others like him. I can't imagine he still has a job, must be nice to have a racist boss, job, culture to protect you.

Phillip White has openly committed felony threats of violence against the public and should have been arrested and booked for it already. The fact that has not happened proves that the problem of police crime is deeper than the police department in San Jose. It also proves that most people working in police departments and city governments need to be removed before things have any chance to get better. The system is rotten and needs to be cleaned out thoroughly, starting with Phillip White. When a cop deludedly thinks he has a God given right to kill someone, things have obviously gotten way, way, way out of hand.

I stand with officer white. tell it like it is

Shameful for a police officer to think and speak that way. What should be more embarassing for that department is that he is only suspended. He should be fired asap.There should also be a an investigation into his past arrest records and complaints aginist him. But believe me he is not the only one. There are morr who feel the same.This is one of the reasons communities across America feel as we do. KEEP PROTESTING!

What a fucking white ignorant trash.

Mr. White should be fired, and he should never be allowed around children. What I find funny is he has the audacity to say his taxes are paying for the Berkeley students. Who the hell does he think is paying is salary? The one that allows him to retire young, continue to collect a bloated salary, and double dip in another county if he so chooses. Mr White, you give new meaning to a "pig." Unfortunately I am sure there are many more "pigs" in blue who stand with you.

Does anyone know what has happened to this despicable man? Unfortunately I am aware he does not stand alone. So many racist cops out there. After the verdict of Eric Garner's murderer's, and so many others, at times it feels pointless to try and hold them accountable. But we must continue to protest, vote and make our voices heard.

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