When protests erupted over the shooting of unarmed teenager Michael Brown last month, police in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson responded with heavy force and tone deaf comments. Now, the St. Louis police academy is apparently looking to correct course with a "highly entertaining" class on how officers can "win the media" after shooting civilians.
As Gawker reports, the St. Louis County and Municipal Police Academy recently posted a flyer outlining a new course called "Officer-Involved Shooting — You Can Win The Media." The one-day program will be led by former Chicago TV anchor Rick Rosenthal and promises to be a fun time for all, with "numerous video clips" and "NO PowerPoint!" Using the Michael Brown tragedy as a case study, attendees will learn about "feeding the animals," "managing media assault and battery," and "managing media when things get ugly (think Ferguson)." They'll also realize that "no comment is a comment," the flyer promises, while making the acquaintance of a "900-pound gorilla."
We are joke to them. Read that flyer. This is entertainment for them. Animals. Gorillas. Not even subtle.— Shaun King (@ShaunKing) September 20, 2014
The all-day course costs $75 and is limited to 80 officers, though it's not clear how many have signed up. The flyer has already drawn criticism from some who have taken issue with its language, suggesting that "animals" and "gorilla" are shorthand for protesters or reporters. You can read the full flyer below.