ONTD Political

Miami-Dade Fire Captain Demoted Over Facebook Post Blaming Trayvon Martin's Death On Parents

10:00 pm - 05/15/2012

The Miami-Dade Fire Rescue official who wrote on Facebook that "failed, shitbag, ignorant" parents are to blame in cases like the shooting death of unarmed Miami Gardens teen Trayvon Martin has been demoted.

Captain Brian Beckmann, who has been with Fire Rescue since 1997, was demoted two rungs to the lowest rank of firefighter during a Monday morning administrative hearing and will be required to undergo a psychological evaluation and undergo diversity training, as first reported by CBS Miami.

Though the firefighters union said it would appeal the ruling, WSVN reports Beckmann submitted an apology to Fire Chief William Bryson, stating in part:

"I promise that I will try harder than ever to be a decent and professional public servant to the citizens of Miami-Dade County... My family has suffered tremendously and this has been punishment beyond anything I ever imagined."

A screencap of Beckmann's comments was first published on TheGrio.com when its source expressed concern at "the thoughts of someone who responds to the homes of the very people" disparaged on his Facebook page, which cites Metro-Dade Firefighters Local 1403.

The rant was reportedly published April 11, the same night special prosecutor Angela Corey announced second degree murder charges against George Zimmerman, the self-appointed neighborhood watch captain who shot Martin after he spotted the black 17-year-old walking through his father's gated community in Sanford, wearing a hoodie. Wrote Beckmann:

"Listening to Prosecutor Corey blow herself and her staff for five minutes before pre-passing judgment on George Zimmerman. The state seeks reelection again, truth aside. I and my coworkers could rewrite the book on whether our urban youths are victims of racist profiling or products of their failed, shitbag, ignorant, pathetic, welfare dependent excuses for parents, but like Mrs. Corey, we speak only the truth. They're just misunderstood little church going angels and the ghetto hoodie look doesn't have anything to do with why people wonder if they're about to get jacked by a thug."




Though Beckmann defended his right to "freely express an opinion...not embellish or alter the facts," Fire Rescue shortly launched an investigation while outraged citizens took to both the streets in protest and the department's Facebook page to call for his firing.

"While Capt. Beckmann should be able to practice his 1st Amendment protections," wrote a Facebook commenter, "being that he is a 'leader' in the MDFR organization I seriously question his judgment and ability to make good sound decisions, especially where the community he supposedly protects is concerned."

Martin's mother, Sybrina Fulton, is a "well-respected" program coordinator at the Miami-Dade County Housing Authority, where she has worked for 23 years, according to the Miami Herald. His father Tracy Martin is a truck driver.

Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez said in a statement that he supports the demotion and has asked for a tighter revision of social media policies, according to Local10:

"The comments made by Captain Beckmann were reprehensible and will not be tolerated. We can't have our employees, especially a supervisor, making such disparaging comments about any member of our community, much less one of our own employees...
"There's no such thing as being off-the-clock; we are public servants 24/7 and must conduct ourselves with the utmost professionalism at all times." source



Haha that's what your ass get.

sesmo 16th-May-2012 03:29 am (UTC)
Can we just call fucking bullshit on that apology? I'm really hoping the thing under those ...'s is "And I'm sorry I made such a baseless statement, that was designed to be hurtful to parents who were already mourning the death of their child." What is quoted there, that's not apologizing to anyone that he hurt by his comments. It's a "pity me, this has been hard on my family" statement, not a fucking apology.
porcelain72 16th-May-2012 03:34 am (UTC)


Directed at Beckmann, not you, obvs.

Kind of sucks for the decent, hardworking, not racist piece of shit firefighters who get stuck with him as his punishment.
thenakedcat 16th-May-2012 03:46 am (UTC)
I really hope you don't mind if I gank that .gif because it is EPIC.
porcelain72 16th-May-2012 03:50 am (UTC)
Please do, I found it somewhere myself!
thenakedcat 16th-May-2012 03:55 am (UTC)
Thank you kindly!
astridmyrna 16th-May-2012 03:43 am (UTC)
I promise that I will try harder than ever to be a decent and professional public servant to the citizens

If you have to try to be a decent and professional public servant, then maybe this job is not for you. Try retail.
ladypolitik 16th-May-2012 04:27 am (UTC)
Lawd, wouldn't want him there, either tbh
Worst weekend shopping customer service, EVER

Edited at 2012-05-16 04:28 am (UTC)
astridmyrna 16th-May-2012 04:30 am (UTC)
Yeah, but, if he gets enough customer complaints then his ass will be fired and he'll have to find a job as a telemarketer.

Wait...
ladypolitik 16th-May-2012 04:30 am (UTC)
LOL
pistol_eyes 16th-May-2012 04:32 am (UTC)
lolol
thepikey 16th-May-2012 04:56 am (UTC)
And then debt collection.
astridmyrna 16th-May-2012 04:58 am (UTC)
And then when he fucks that up, he goes to one of two places: 1) the DMV, 2) Driving School as an instructer
bowtomecha 16th-May-2012 09:49 am (UTC)
Hahaha how many circles of hell is this so far?
brookiki 16th-May-2012 10:54 am (UTC)
You know, whenever I hear people bragging about doing things like blowing an airhorn into the phone when a telemarketer calls, I usually think they're horrible (even though I do hate telemarketers). If this guy were a telemarketer, though, I think I could be okay with it in this one particular case.
smittenlotus 16th-May-2012 09:06 am (UTC)
As someone who works in retail, trust me, we're not THAT bad.

For a new job suggestion, I suggest janitorial work. Then he can see that shit spewing really is not a wise idea when you have to clean it up yourself. :)
brookiki 16th-May-2012 10:55 am (UTC)
Housekeeping at a hospital. Enough said.
darsynia 17th-May-2012 04:13 pm (UTC)
OT but when I was in the hospital to have the baby over the Easter holiday, my favorite staff member was a fantastically upbeat housekeeper person. I wanted to ask him what he was doing to maintain such an awesome attitude!
astridmyrna 16th-May-2012 02:00 pm (UTC)
I work in retail too, so I've seen the good and the bad. But I like your idea better!
coraki 17th-May-2012 01:51 am (UTC)
I'm sure sewers need maintenence from time to time.
darsynia 17th-May-2012 04:14 pm (UTC)
The Dirty Jobs ep that showed the guy who had the job of cleaning out septic tanks had ME convinced, heh.
mskye 16th-May-2012 04:57 am (UTC)
Honestly, I laughed. Poor bby, just another victim of political correctness gone maaaaaad!
iamduvet 16th-May-2012 05:11 am (UTC)
Good.
erunamiryene 16th-May-2012 05:15 am (UTC)
Though the firefighters union said it would appeal the ruling

WHY. WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT.
lickety_split 16th-May-2012 07:34 am (UTC)
I think they have to if he decides to appeal since they're his union and he's presumably still paying dues.
brookiki 16th-May-2012 10:57 am (UTC)
Yeah, I'm okay with that. I mean, the downside to putting a system in place that protects the innocent people from being unfairly or unreasonably punished is that the guilty people are going to use it as well, but it's still better to have the system in place and run that risk.
gairid 16th-May-2012 09:30 am (UTC)
Probably thought it was okay to be a racist piece of garbage in the current atmosphere in this country. I'm glad he got bit on the ass for it---nice change.

Re: Union..they have back his appeal if he pays his dues. My dad was a firefighter for 36 years---if not for the union he would not have been able to raise his family and then have something to actually fall back on when he finally retired. He would not have had an adequate healthcare package. Even with the union fighting all those years for pay raises he still worked a second job for as many years as he was a fireman.

I would hate to think that this asshole would make it even harder for the firefighter's union (as well as other unions) to function and remain in place. Firefighters have a dangerous and difficult job and they do deserve proper compensation.
brookiki 16th-May-2012 11:01 am (UTC)
Probably thought it was okay to be a racist piece of garbage in the current atmosphere in this country.

Exactly. I'm really, really glad that he's getting punished for saying that because it's just beyond the pale. The problem is that way too many people (a lot of them much higher profile than this guy) are getting away with saying much worse about the case.
bowtomecha 16th-May-2012 09:46 am (UTC)
The Miami-Dade Fire Rescue official who wrote on Facebook that "failed, shitbag, ignorant" parents are to blame in cases like the shooting death of unarmed Miami Gardens teen Trayvon Martin has been demoted.

I was like "HMM" when I read that. Maybe he meant Zimmermann's parents? Even then, I was like well its a very hasty and strong opinion but maybe he's been traumatized by seeing young people getting killed on the streets in his line of work. Maybe he's frustrated about how this happened to this poor kid. I wish there was more to elaborate on this... and then...

"Listening to Prosecutor Corey blow herself and her staff for five minutes before pre-passing judgment on George Zimmerman. The state seeks reelection again, truth aside. I and my coworkers could rewrite the book on whether our urban youths are victims of racist profiling or products of their failed, shitbag, ignorant, pathetic, welfare dependent excuses for parents, but like Mrs. Corey, we speak only the truth. They're just misunderstood little church going angels and the ghetto hoodie look doesn't have anything to do with why people wonder if they're about to get jacked by a thug."

And that's when it became WTF and GTFO. From 0 to racist douche in 5 seconds.
phoenixblaze 16th-May-2012 09:59 am (UTC)
"My family has suffered tremendously and this has been punishment beyond anything I ever imagined."

Um, your innocent teenager wasn't murdered by a racist madman. Try again.
maladaptive 16th-May-2012 11:23 am (UTC)
Uuuugh, I've been hating the news. It's all "call us in, what do you think about people getting fired for Facebook comments?"

Not the same if the cashier at Publix gets fired for Facebook comments versus a fire captain. I don't trust this fire captain to do his damn job, which is saving people. A lot more critical than a cashier's job to the health and safety of the community.

But of course people are all "his freedom of speech! Censorship! It was his off time! arglebargle."
serendipity_15 16th-May-2012 01:45 pm (UTC)
his freedom of speech!

FREEDOM OF SPEECH DOES NOT EQUAL FREEDOM FROM CONSEQUENCES!!! WHY don't people get this???
mirhanda 16th-May-2012 05:13 pm (UTC)
I would be more inclined to say people shouldn't be fired for their FB comments if they kept them private.
sparkindarkness !16th-May-2012 12:06 pm (UTC)
I promise that I will try harder than ever to be a decent and professional public servant to the citizens of Miami-Dade County... My family has suffered tremendously and this has been punishment beyond anything I ever imagined.

Your imagination is inadequate and I hope much much more concrete punishment is incoming preferably involving angry porcupines.

And never mind decent public servant - try being a decent human being. I know it's a stretch, but everyone needs a lofty goal to aspire to


And he went to a shop to buy skittles. For crying out loud what about that is blameworthy, let alone blaming the parents for it?!
mirhanda 16th-May-2012 05:09 pm (UTC)
Demoted? Why not fired?
serendipity_15 16th-May-2012 09:14 pm (UTC)
In a way I kind of like this better because it busts him down to the lowest rung again, something he hasn't been in almost a decade. So what does he have to show for the almost decade of service now? Nada.
abee 16th-May-2012 05:54 pm (UTC)
My family has suffered tremendously and this has been punishment beyond anything I ever imagined."

ohnotaylor 16th-May-2012 11:15 pm (UTC)
Should have been fired. And that "apology" is a crock of shit.
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