Cleveland police union wants more than apology from Isaiah Crowell
By Thomas Moore
Cleveland Browns running back Isaiah Crowell is facing pressure from the Cleveland police union of his controversial Instagram post.
Cleveland Browns running back Isaiah Crowell met with Cleveland Chief of Police Calvin Williams on Tuesday in an attempt to smooth things over following an Instagram post showing a drawing of a police officer being stabbed in the neck by a man in a black hood.
That came the day after Crowell issued a crafted apology for the social media post, in which Crowell said the post was “an extremely poor decision and I apologize for that mistake and for offending people. My values and beliefs do not match that image.”
The apology was not enough for Stephen Loomis, president of Cleveland Police Patrolmen’s Association, who wants actions – not words – from Crowell to set things right. Loomis spoke with TMZ and made it clear that Monday’s apology was not enough:
“He needs to go to Dallas, help the families who lost their loved ones last week, write them a check, look them in the eyes and give a heartfelt apology.
“I will pull Cleveland officers, sheriffs, state troopers out of First Energy Stadium this season if he doesn’t make it right.
“You’re a grown ass man, and you claim you were too emotional to know it was wrong? Think we’ll accept your apology? Kiss my ass.”
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It hasn’t been the best of years for the Cleveland Police Department and with next week’s Republican National Convention sure to contribute to what has already been a long year, it is not surprising that Loomis would have an emotional reaction to Crowell’s social media post.
But while the Browns are going to levy some kind of discipline on Crowell for what they classified as an “extremely disturbing and unacceptable social media decision,” it will likely be less than what Loomis is looking for.
The best thing the Browns can do is take their time and come up with a punishment that is both thoughtful and can potentially make a difference. While the first reaction to an incident like this is to “do something, anything, and do it now,” there really is no reason the Browns need to rush to discipline Crowell. Everyone would be better served if the punishment – whether it is handed down tomorrow, next week or later this summer – has actual meaning behind it.
This is such an emotional issue that the Browns would be doing everyone a disservice by rushing into something. We’ve seen fans saying that Crowell’s apology is enough, while others want him off the team immediately. Plain Dealer columnist Bill Livingston even went as far as to write that Crowell’s social media post was “one of the most offensive moments in team history.”
That may be a bit of stretch, seeing as how the Browns once drafted Jeremiah Pharms, who was subsequently arrested on charges he shot and pistol-whipped a man for $1,500 worth of marijuana and eventually went to prison, so he will always be at the top of the list, but it underscores just how divisive this whole issue is at the moment.
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Crowell made a mistake and is only now beginning to pay for it.
How much longer and to what extent that bill comes due remains to be seen.