Statement of IACP President Richard Beary on Anti-Law Enforcement Content

“As President of the International Association of Chiefs of Police, I am shocked and saddened by the music video “Hands Up” which calls for the killing of law enforcement officers. I hope that New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio will address the City’s connection to this video and we look forward to a response.

This video and others like it, violent anti-law enforcement material posted on social media, and other hateful propaganda is simply unacceptable. Everyone has the right to freedom of speech, but that does not award individuals with the right to violence. Videos like “Hands Up” and other violent sentiments continue to perpetuate tensions and encourage others to act out in a vicious manner.    

On behalf of law enforcement, I ask that we try to continue to move forward in a productive way. The International Association of Chiefs of Police is continuing to work with President Obama’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing to strengthen and rebuild trust among law enforcement and the communities they serve. We will be testifying over the weekend before the task force panelists, in the hope that we can offer thoughtful suggestions to better community-police relations. Let’s keep the conversation moving in the right direction, and not take a step backward by creating or perpetuating violent content like “Hands Up.”