Juli Briskman, a 50 -year-old mother of two, told marketing company bosses called her in and fired her for obscene gesture
A woman whose picture went viral after she raised her middle thumb at Donald Trump as his motorcade passed her on her bicycle has been fired from her job.
Juli Briskman was cycling in Virginia last month when she offered the gesture in a gut reaction to Trump’s policies, she said.
” He was passing by and my blood merely was beginning to simmer ,” she told the Huffington Post.” I’m thinking, Daca recipients are getting kicked out. He pulled ads for open enrollment in Obamacare. Only one one-third of Puerto Rico has power. I’m thinking, he’s at the damn golf course again.
” I flipped off the motorcade a number of hours .”
A photographer traveling with the presidential motorcade snapped Briskman’s picture and the image speedily spread across news outlets and social media. Many hailed Briskman as a hero, with some saying she should run in the 2020 election. Late-night comedy hosts also picked up the story.
Briskman had been working as a marketing and communications specialist for a Virginia-based federal contractor, Akima, for six months. She thought it best to alert the HR department to the online fuss. Bosses then called her into a session, she said.
” They said,’ We’re separating from you ,'” Briskman told the Huffington Post. “‘ Basically, you cannot have lewd or obscene things in your social media .’ So they were calling flipping him off obscene .”
She said the company was annoyed she had use the image as her profile painting on Twitter and Facebook, and told her it infringed social media policy and could hurt the company’s reputation as a government contractor.
Briskman said she pointed out that her social media pages do not mention her employer, and that the incident happened on her own hour. She also said another employee had written a profane insult about someone on Facebook, but had been allowed to keep his task after deleting the post and being reprimanded.
Virginia, however, has ” at will” employment laws, entailing private-sector employers can fire people for any reason.
Suddenly, the 50 -year-old mother of two saw herself looking for a new job.
Briskman, who votes Democratic, said she planned to look for a new job with an advocacy group she believes in, such as Schemed Parenthood or People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.
After leaving his Virginia golf club and before passing Briskman, Trump’s motorcade passed a pedestrian who gave a vigorous thumbs-down gesture. Another woman had been standing outside the entryway to the golf club, holding a sign telling ” Impeach “.
As news of Briskman’s firing spread, many social media users asked why she was being penalise for conveying free speech on her own hour, under the first amendment to the US constitution.
Akima did not immediately respond to a request for commentary. On Monday, its website went down. Someone began a crowdfunding page online to raise money for Briskman.
Briskman said she had no sadness about “members attention” her public prove of displeasure received. In fact, she said, she was happy to be an image of protest.
” In some routes, I’m doing better than ever ,” she said.” I’m angry about where our country is right now. I am appalled. This was an opportunity for me to say something .”
Read more: www.theguardian.com