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Police Officer Resigns After Backlash Over Conventional Marriage Views

A Georgia police officer has resigned after he was instructed by superiors that he couldn’t share his private spiritual views on social media.

“If somebody someplace considers an opinion I’ve—that is not a direct citation from Scripture—to be offensive, then that might be a fireable offense,” Jacob Kersey, the previous officer, instructed The Day by day Sign.

Kersey, 19, who started working final Could on the Port Wentworth Police Division in a jurisdiction simply exterior Savannah, says “all the pieces was going effectively” till the beginning of the brand new 12 months.

On Jan. 2, Kersey posted a 20-word message about his view of marriage on Fb.

God designed marriage. Marriage refers to Christ and the church,” he wrote, paraphrasing the Apostle Paul’s instructing within the Ebook of Ephesians. “That is why there isn’t any such factor as gay marriage.”

The subsequent day, Kersey stated he obtained a cellphone name from his supervisor, who instructed him that somebody had complained concerning the put up and to take it down.

When Kersey refused, the supervisor warned him that failure to delete the Fb put up on marriage might end in his termination.

Kersey stated he then was contacted by Lt. Justin Hardy, who instructed him that the Port Wentworth Police Division did not wish to be held liable in a “use of pressure” state of affairs involving somebody within the LGBTQ group. Kersey nonetheless refused to delete the put up.

The police officer obtained a cellphone name later that day from the police division’s Maj. Lee Sherrod, ordering him to return to the workplace the next morning, Jan. 4, and switch in all the pieces he had that belonged to the town.

Kersey instructed The Day by day Sign that he believed he was going to be terminated.

When he arrived on the police station, the younger officer met with Sherrod, Hardy, Capt. Nathan Jentzen, and Police Chief Matt Libby.

He was instructed that he was “being positioned on administrative depart whereas the town investigated to see if I might maintain my job,” Kersey stated. “I used to be instructed that I used to be sensible past my years, an outdated soul, and that they brag on me on a regular basis, however that I could not put up issues like that.”

Kersey stated Libby instructed him that his Fb put up on marriage was the “identical factor as saying the N-word and ‘F— all these homosexuals.’” Kersey stated his captain instructed him that his free speech “was restricted as a result of my place as …a police officer.”

The Port Wentworth Police Division, which serves a metropolis with a inhabitants of slightly below 11,000 in 2020, didn’t reply to The Day by day Sign’s request for remark.

After every week of paid administrative depart, Kersey met once more with the management of the police division. He says he was knowledgeable that he was not on administrative depart and wouldn’t be fired, however that he couldn’t share opinions on social media that may very well be thought-about offensive.

Kersey says he was instructed he might put up Scripture verses, however couldn’t work as one of many division’s officers if he continued to share his “interpretation or opinion on Scripture if it was deemed offensive.”

“Separation of church and state” was the explanation given for why he couldn’t put up such views, Kersey stated.

Kersey stated cops instructed him that they have been growing a brand new coverage to information officers on what they have been and weren’t allowed to put up on social media.

Subsequent, Kersey obtained a “letter of notification” from Sherrod dated Jan. 13. The letter defined that though Kersey is entitled to his personal private beliefs, he needs to be “reminded that if any put up on any of your social media platforms, or another assertion or motion, renders you unable to carry out, and to be seen as [unable] to carry out, your job in a good and equitable method, you might be terminated.”

4 days after the date on the letter, on Jan. 17, Kersey formally resigned from the Port Wentworth Police Division.

“I made a decision to resign … as a result of I simply did not suppose it sensible to return and play their recreation,” Kersey instructed The Day by day Sign, including that “the best way issues went down, I did not really feel as if my command actually had my again.”

Wanting again, the previous police officer says he felt he was being bullied, by means of the worry of termination, into taking down his Fb put up:

Although I resigned, it was made clear to me within the conferences by my command employees that if I used to be to return to work, they might hearth me at any time for any motive, as I used to be nonetheless in my work take a look at interval. These aren’t very encouraging statements to make to an officer who’s on administrative depart after being led to imagine he was terminated.

The shocking factor, Kersey stated, is that regardless of having his personal Christian conservative podcast for years on which he mentioned points similar to gender ideology and election reforms, it did not result in “folks complaining about issues that I stated once I was off obligation alone time on the podcast.”

“I am positive folks disagreed. I am positive folks did n’t agree with all the pieces that I stated as a conservative Christian, and that is advantageous,” Kersey stated of his podcast from him. “However I got here to work, I did my job, I used to be skilled, and I had a terrific relationship with all my co-workers, who come from all totally different backgrounds and perception programs.”

As a boy, Kersey stated, he grew up in a damaged dwelling and infrequently noticed cops amid his mother and father’ custody battle. When officers arrived, “they introduced order, they introduced peace,” he recalled, including that many officers “went above and past the decision of obligation” to speak to him and supply encouragement.

“I wished to spend a while of my life studying what that meant to serve and to observe within the footsteps of people that invested in my life at a younger age, and I used to be extraordinarily enthusiastic about doing that,” Kersey stated. “Nevertheless it appears, at the least at that division that I used to be working at, that the one method that was attainable is that if I compromise my values, morals, and deeply held spiritual beliefs.”

“I’m grateful for the chance that I used to be given to be a police officer,” he stated. “I don’t take that honor and duty flippantly. Nevertheless, my integrity and Christian beliefs are on the core of who I’m, and I can’t abandon them.”

Though he’s assured of discovering different work, Kersey stated, he is aware of {that a} long-time officer with a household to assist, put in an analogous state of affairs, can be confronted with the selection of “dropping all the pieces that they ever labored for, and their retirement, or standing up for his or her beliefs.”

He is not positive what’s subsequent for his profession, Kersey stated, however he does not “wish to be the person that sits passively by as the entire world, and my fellow countrymen, are deceived by the lies … occurring in [the] tradition.”

His resolution to share his story “might very effectively imply I can’t have one other alternative to be a police officer,” Kersey instructed The Day by day Sign. “That has been an especially tough actuality to just accept, however I sincerely imagine talking up is the appropriate factor to do.”

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