Meet America’s toughest cop, Capt. Clay Higgins. The Louisiana police captain drew the ire of the local American Civil Liberties Union after a video where he promises to “hunt down and track” local gang members went viral this year. In the video Higgins calls out several local gang members by name. He hurls insults at the “heathens” and promises to “meet them on solid ground. Anywhere, anytime.” It spurred criticism from the ACLU for a reason that may surprise you.
Watch the video here:
Surprisingly, the ACLU seemed unphased by Higgins’ tough love approach. Instead, Marjorie Esman, executive director of the ACLU of Louisiana, is criticising Higgins for his use of the term “Heathen” to describe the gang members terrorizing the local community. She released the following statement to the Daily Mail:
‘”Heathen” is a religious term, and unless Mr. Higgins has specific information about the religious beliefs of those individuals, it is both inappropriate and incorrect.
She continued to argue:
And even if it’s true that these individuals, or some of them, are religiously “heathen,” that is of no consequence to their status as criminal suspects
Higgins seems unphased by the criticism. He is choosing to focus on the issues at hand rather than argue over semantics. He told the Daily Mail in a statement responding to Esman:
You want to have a discussion about words, knock yourself out. I’m not going to get into a debate about the semantic meanings of words…What I mean by heathen is barbarian. These guys are accused of very serious crimes. Heinous, hedonistic, barbaric crimes.
Higgins went on to call the comments “hilarious” and “ridiculous”. As a self proclaimed “champion of constitutional rights” Higgins chose to defend his freedom of speech and even challenged Esman to a debate on the issue. Esman declined his invitation.
Higgins recently resigned from his post as police captain. He states that the decision had nothing to do with the viral video or response from the ACLU. He states that he received orders that he believed compromised his principles and chose to resign. Despite the conflict with his department Higgins reports that he still respects his sheriff and superiors and would take a bullet for them. He plans to continue to improve his community but will do so outside of his previous position. See his full resignation speech here:
Do you think Capt. Higgins can still change his community for the better outside of a law enforcement role? Share your thoughts in the comments!