Confederate Flag Underwear Photo Gets North Charleston Cop Fired After Photo Was Posted To Facebook

The Confederate flag has always been a point of contention between its supporters and detractors, but perhaps never more so than in recent weeks after it was a main focus in pictures posted online by Dylann Roof, the 21-year-old Charleston mass murderer who opened fire on a historic black church, killing nine people.

Following Roof’s massacre, many Southern states have voted to remove the Confederate flag from their statehouses and public places. Retailers like Walmart, eBay, and Amazon have also removed the Confederate flag from their inventories. Throughout all of this, some people have decided to express their freedom of speech by posting pictures of themselves proudly flying — or wearing — the Confederate flag.

Freedom of speech, perhaps, but not freedom from consequences, as Shannon Dildine, a North Charleston police officer, found out after he was fired for posting a picture to Facebook in which he wore nothing but a pair of Confederate flag boxer shorts and a smile.

In a letter detailing his firing from Police Chief Eddie Driggers obtained by ABC News, Sgt. Dildine was told he was fired because the picture of his Confederate flag underwear undermined “your ability to improve trust and instill confidence when working with our citizens.”

“Your posting in this manner led to you being publicly identified as a North Charleston Police officer and associated both you and the Department with an image that symbolizes hate and oppression to a significant portion of the citizens we are sworn to serve. In light of current events posting an inflammatory photograph in a way that permitted it to become widely distributed shows a lack of reason or judgment that is unacceptable.”

Driggers also went on to state that Dildine posting a picture of himself happily sporting a pair of Confederate flag underwear makes it near impossible for the 19-year police veteran to handle criminal cases that involved minorities “since defense counsel can reasonably be expected to use the photograph to call into question… your motivation in making the arrest.”

Dildine has 10 days to appeal the decision.

Do you think Sgt. Dildine received the appropriate punishment for posting a picture online wearing only a pair of Confederate flag boxers, especially considering the controversy surrounding the flag recently? Or do you perhaps think being fired for an online picture, no matter how thoughtless and insensitive it was, is going too far, given that it was posted on his off-time?

[Photo Credit: Win McNamee/Getty Images]

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