The Boston Police Patrolmen's Association tweeted that an officer was inside an Ace Hardware store in the city's Allston neighborhood Tuesday when an employee said, "I smell bacon" — a synonym for the derogatory term "pig" used against police.
The BPPA said that when the officer asked for an apology, he was told there would be none. With that, the purchased items were returned, the association said, and the store "lost" a customer. The BPPA characterized the incident as a "bad experience" for the officer.
But several hours after the BPPA's initial tweet, the association posted a follow-up message saying Ace Hardware representatives reached out and spoke to the officer in question and that "during the conversation, an apology was offered and graciously accepted by the officer with both parties agreeing that mutual respect benefits us all."
There was no indication that the employee in question offered an apology or was disciplined in any manner. Anti-police sentiment has been spiking of late, particularly in urban areas — and especially on the heels of incidents involving black men such as the death of George Floyd and the shooting of Jacob Blake.
How did folks react?
The reaction on Twitter to the incident was mixed. Some users were upset that employee showed such disrespect toward a police officer:
- "Disgraceful, disgusting, and un-American," one user noted.
- "Damn....Ace Hardware just f'd up," another user said. "I'm a Democrat, yes, but I believe all lives matter and don't wish harm to anyone. I also believe not all cops are bad. I work for Lowes in upstate NY, and we would NEVER disrespect any first responders like that! I repeat.....NEVER."
- "Omg @AceHardware better fire that rude employee," another commenter noted. "Fast."
- "I say this as a Dem ... as a Lib ... as someone appalled by police brutality ... HOWEVER, I also think that as an employee, working anywhere, my job is to serve the customer and treat him/her with courtesy," another user said. "To initiate rudeness on the side of the employee is not good policy."
- "And a pos employee should be fired," another said.
But quite a few others were decidedly unsympathetic to the officer:
- "A cop is butt hurt, the world knows they're a wuss & easily offended by WORDS. Wow! This little piggy cried all the way home," one commenter offered. "If the cop is that sensitive, they need a new job w/o access to a gun."
- "If you need help crying about it, may i suggest deploying a canister of tear gas inside your patrol car," another quipped.
- "If someone can't handle 'I smell bacon' they have no business controlling a firearm," another person said. "This is why y'all murder black people who are running away or asleep in their beds — you have no control over your emotions and are a bunch of babies with guns on an ego trip."
- "Phew. For a second there, I thought you were going to say an ACE Hardware employee shot your officer in the back 7 times in the cutlery department," another user said.
Ace Hardware on Thursday morning didn't immediately respond to TheBlaze's request for comment regarding if any disciplinary action was taken against the employee in question.