Thanks to Auxvasse Police Chief Kevin Suedmeyer for perpetuating the notion that rural Missourians are a bunch of hicks.
The Fulton Sun recently reported that Suedmeyer wrote on his Facebook page: "Want to know something that's fairly important. If your dumb a** stands in the roadway blocking vehicular traffic — you deserve to be run over. That will help cleanup the gene pool. How stupid must you be."
One of his Facebook friends — Callaway County Western District commissioner candidate Will Shackelford — responded, "Have you come across any road blocks?"
"Nope (and) I certainly won't stop for them — though if they insist — I'll identify myself — they can back down or get shot I am bull**** intolerant," Suedmeyer replied.
In another post, Suedmeyer wrote, "Corona virus coming to rioters everywhere Darwin — work your magic. Time to ramp up the funeral industry."
Other posts are memes created by other Facebook users. One shows a caricature of former President Barack Obama sticking a target onto the back of a uniformed police officer; Suedmeyer shared it June 4, captioning it "The a**hole that started it all." Another shared the same day depicts a black person exiting through a broken store window holding a number of boxes while other black individuals look on; it's labeled "Looting: When free housing, free food, free education and free phones just aren't enough."
While our nation is amid a national debate on issues of race, equality and policing, such comments are beyond insensitive.
The city's nearly 1,000 residents should be embarrassed and angered.
After a resident complained, the Auxvasse Board of Aldermen, in a split vote, slapped the chief on the wrist with a one-day administrative leave and a verbal warning. Move along; nothing to see here, folks.
We recently opined about our faith in the professionalism of our Jefferson City-area law enforcement. We believe that to be true.
We do believe in strong police forces that uphold the laws. Anyone in our country has the right to protest, but not to block traffic, riot or loot.
However, a police chief who threatens and taunts? If you wonder why people are calling to defund police, Suedmeyer's comments are Exhibit A.
The city's Board of Aldermen owes its residents an explanation as to why they've taken no real action against their police chief, whose comments have contributed to the sullied reputation of law enforcement everywhere.
We also believe an apology from Suedmeyer is overdue.