Target: Baton Rouge Police Chief Carl Dabadie
Goal: Fire the police officers who made a parade float mocking the victims of an alleged child rapist.
Three police officers created a parade float that mocked the victims of a man who has been charged with raping his daughter and three other young girls. The man, William Hayden, was the star of reality TV series “Sons of Guns” until the charges were brought against him. The show was being filmed in Baton Rouge, so when the city’s yearly Spanish Town Parade came around, the officers decided to create a float making a mockery of the entire incident.
The float was covered with signs making crude and offensive jokes suck as “Red Jack It,” which is a play on the name of the firearms company in the show, and “Kiss Me Daddy.” It also featured a sign with an unflattering photo of Hayden’s daughter–the one he allegedly raped as a child–with the caption “Red Jack It Firearms: A face only a daddy could love.”
The officers responsible for this incredibly gross parade float are reportedly “under investigation” but have not been placed on leave or punished in any way so far. The city police chief says that the men were off duty while making this float, but this hardly matters when these men are supposed to be responsible for the safety of the people. Any one of these men could end up being involved in a case of rape or child molestation. This float sends the message that they, and by extension the entire police department, will not take such a case seriously.
This float was not just offensive to the victims of Hayden’s alleged crimes, but to all rape and child rape victims. Given how prevalent these crimes are, there were undoubtedly multiple victims in attendance of the parade who had to see their horrific trauma be made light of in an extremely public manner. Police officers should understand that child rape is not funny in the slightest. Sign this petition to demand that these officers be immediately fired before they’re allowed to cause any more harm to rape victims and survivors.
Dear Chief Dabadie,
As you are aware, three of your officers created and displayed a float at the Spanish Town Parade mocking the victims of an alleged case of child rape. The float included incredibly offensive jokes about the rape of little girls by their fathers while featuring a theme about the show “Sons of Guns,” which has been put on hold because the star has been charged with raping his daughter and three other girls when they were very young.
How these men have not yet even been placed on leave is beyond me. These “jokes” demonstrate beyond any doubt that these officers do not take the subject of rape, even child rape, seriously. How can you trust them to take cases of sexual assault or abuse seriously when they think it’s appropriate to mock victims of these crimes so publicly? Do you really think they should be allowed any power over citizens, many of whom are women and girls?
It doesn’t matter than these men were off duty while making the float. Their actions betray their attitudes about rape, and those attitudes will affect them on the job. Refusal to punish the officers will demonstrate that you and your entire department condone these attitudes. Unless you want to tell the entire nation that you also think child rape is funny, you must fire these officers immediately and demonstrate that this kind of behavior will not be tolerated from any of your police.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Victor Bezrukov via Flickr