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Yep. Yeah. Uh-huh. You can totally get fired if you decide it's a good idea to turn up N.W.A.'s "F* Tha Police" as a few officers stroll into your restaurant to eat. It won't help matters to dance, laugh, and sing along when a deputy comes over to ask you about it. And it certainly won't help your case if that same deputy happens to be a regular customer and know the restaurant's owner, while you are just a lowly dishwasher.
So yeah, sorry dude. Good luck with the job hunt after that.
Coming from N.W.A., a rap act not known for subtlety, "F*** Tha Police" is about as unsubtle as it gets. (In case the title wasn't warning enough, link contains NSFW language.) With a chorus that repeats the title four times, the song also has multiple references to violence against law enforcement officers. One taste:
Ice Cube will swarm
On any motherf***er in a blue uniform
Just cause I'm from the CPT
Punk police are afraid of me, huh
A young n**** on the warpath
And when I'm finished, it's gonna be a bloodbath
Of cops, dying in L.A.
Yo Dre, I got something to say
The track, from N.W.A.'s 1988 album "Straight Outta Compton," went to number 25 on the Billboard chart, and has remained popular, given its themes of racial profiling and police brutality. And a feature film on the group's history was released last year, which has probably helped keep the song on people's radar.
It certainly was on the unnamed dishwasher's radar at Going's Barbecue & Steak Co. in Crosby, Texas. Deputy Shane Cates says he approached the dishwasher after getting some sideways looks from other patrons, then realizing what music was coming from the kitchen. "I was completely shocked and thought surely no one was doing that as a dig on cops," Cates wrote in a now-deleted Facebook post. "The guy washing dishes was singing the song and pointing out towards the eating area ... He turned and noticed me standing there and started laughing." Cates and the other officers left, but he came back the next day to complain to the manager.
Going's co-owner Rigo Berto Ruiz confirmed that the dishwasher played the song intentionally and that he has since been fired. And the chain issued an apology on Facebook and offered police officers a free meal at two of the chain's locations.
So the lesson, as always, is that while it may not be illegal to yell, swear, or blast "F*** Tha Police" at the police, it's also not illegal for your boss to fire you for that behavior. I mean, come on -- you're working in a barbeque joint serving cops. Surely you can come up with a better joke.
Meeting with a lawyer can help you understand your options and how to best protect your rights. Visit our attorney directory to find a lawyer near you who can help.