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LET Protesters owe police an apology

I am a sergeant at the Rochester Police Department, and on March 21 I went to John Marshall High School, as I had been told that some students were planning a walkout to protest the war in Iraq. I arrived and stayed well away from the student protesters.

My role as a police officer is to keep the peace, and I don't take sides when I get involved in peaceful protests where people are exercising their right to freedom of speech and freedom of expression.

As the group walked by me, I heard at least one member of the group of students scream a profanity at me, and refer to me as a "pig." This was way out of line. My admiration for the fact that this group felt strongly enough about an issue to protest it publicly was very much changed by the apparent need of at least one person to scream very unpleasant, and downright insulting, words at me.

It's disappointing to see students act that way. It is ironic that a member of a group that paints itself as peace-loving and against violence and war was screaming what many people would consider fighting words. An apology from this group, or at least the one who felt that need to scream obscenities at me, is in order.

Mike; Walsh

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Rochester; Police Department

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