Austin police officer suspended for calling protester ’gay’ based on their clothing – News – Austin American-Statesman

An Austin police officer has been temporarily suspended following an internal affairs investigation into homophobic comments he reportedly made while describing a person at a Black Lives Matter protest in May.

While on duty to respond to a large number of protesters in front of Austin police headquarters on May 30, Officer Ryan Seweryn described one of the demonstrators as “that gay dude with the short shorts in the black shirt,” according to the disciplinary memo, signed by Austin Police Department Chief Brian Manley on Nov. 25.

The protester who Seweryn described may have been pointing a laser pointer at a helicopter, the memo said, adding that Seweryn’s comments were recorded on his body-worn camera. The internal affairs investigation was spurred by a complaint made by a commander at the department on Nov. 13, according to the memo.

When asked to explain his comments during the investigation, Seweryn claimed that he was not describing the sexual orientation of the protester, but rather their style of clothing, according to the memo.

In the conclusion of the memo, Manley wrote that Seweryn did not take responsibility for his conduct and tried to justify his description of the protester.

“While he acknowledged that his conduct is inconsistent with APD training and expectations, he did not accept that there was anything wrong with the assumptions, description, and stereotype he made,” the memo stated.

Seweryn was suspended for ten days — from Nov. 26 to Dec. 5 — for violating the department’s rules related to impartial attitude and courtesy, the memo said. He will also have to go through additional training, according to the memo.

Seweryn served a separate ten-day suspension earlier this year for posting an old booking photo of a fellow Austin police officer, according to disciplinary documents.

Source Article

Read more

From Hijabs to Cosplay, Indonesian Finds Calling in Cat Fashion Makeovers | World News

BOGOR, Indonesia (Reuters) – It may not be haute couture, but former Indonesian school teacher turned tailor Fredi Lugina Priadi has found a lucrative market for his cat fashions, creating unique costumes and cosplay outfits for cats.

After quitting his job as a teacher, he tried his hand at a number of businesses, including running a motorbike repair shop, before stumbling upon cat fashions, an idea from one of his cat-loving cousins.

The 39-year-old now supplies outfits to picky pet owners looking to dress their felines in everything from superhero outfits for figures like Thor and Superman to cosplay characters, nurse uniforms and even traditional Islamic wear.

“At first, my cousins who love cats gave me the idea to make these costumes and I thought it was weird,” said Fredi.

“But it turned out to be funny to see them with costumes,” he said, speaking from his rustic workshop with a sewing machine in Bogor just south of the capital Jakarta .

    Since setting up his online business three years ago, he now generates up to 3 million rupiah ($210) a month if he sells at least four pieces a day. Each outfit is priced at between $6 to $10. 

    Customer Risma Sandra Irawan has bought at least 30 outfits for her cat Sogan and puts in orders for special occasions like the Muslim festival of Eid al-Fitr or at Christmas.

    “Its for fun only…it can relieve our stress,” said Risma, who created an account on social media platform TikTok showing off Sogan’s outfits that has more than 50,000 followers.

While many find it cute, Fredi has received some negative comments on social media from those who consider it cruel to dress up a cat and he advises buyers not to make their pet wear an outfit for too long.

Indeed, in the wake of a boom in social media postings of pets dressed up, often in increasingly bizarre poses or outfits, some animal welfare groups have issued guidelines to make owners more aware of any signs that it may be causing their pet distress.

(Writing by Ed Davies; Editing by Michael Perry)

Copyright 2020 Thomson Reuters.

Source Article

Read more