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Gay Cop

Fights for Right

to March in Uniform

6/7/2011 10:40 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

A gay correctional officer is outraged that his department thinks marching in uniform in the West Hollywood gay pride parade is a "discredit" to the department ... and he's taking legal action to fight for his rights.

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Andrew Johnson works as a correctional officer for the California Institution for Women in Chino, CA.  He's also a member of the Gay Peace Officers Association.  Johnson asked his superiors at the Department of Corrections for permission to march in uniform on Sunday, but was told he couldn't do it because of a law that prohibits officers from marching in uniform if it would bring "discredit" to the department.

Johnson's lawyer, Gloria Allred, said at a news conference that other departments -- including the LAPD, L.A. County Sheriff's Department and the CHP -- allow officers to march in uniform in the parade.

Allred says the Department of Corrections allows officers to march in uniform in other parades, including the Christmas parade and the Carrot Festival.

Allred says she's filed a complaint with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing, alleging discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Allred wouldn't let Johnson speak, because of fear of retaliation.

She wants the warden to reverse his position so Johnson can march.

217 COMMENTS

No Avatar
106.

runkbrooks    

they're just gonna think he's part of the village people anyways, why the heck not?

1182 days ago
107.

GoAwayGloria    

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

1182 days ago
108.

Quinn    

As long as he isn't going to be all piss drunk in the streets and peeing in an alley as I have seen some men in uniform after parades. WTF cares? Not our place to judge as long as he does his job.

1182 days ago
109.

Stan    

You know there is lots of people that seem to be ignorant and they all seem to be on this board. If you don't like gay people you can "YELL IT" and nobody cares. If you say "I hate Black People" then people react. Well hate i*****e.

1182 days ago
110.

Muppet    

Wonder if Harvey would agree with the corrections officer wearing his uniform if it was for a parade for meat eaters. That's something that offends him, wonder what he would say then. hmmmmmm

1182 days ago
111.

LonnieB    

Albert D'Orazio,

Has the "born that way" arguement been settled? I recall, years ago (before the internet ruled our lives) that a group of neurosurgeons did an extensive study on the brain tissue of gay and straight men. They concluded that in gay men, a certain type of "brain cluster" was either missing or deficient.
When the study was released, the gay community was devided on the implication.
One camp said "See...you ARE born that way.", while another camp got indignant about it saying "So you're calling homosexuality a birth defect?"

Which is it?

My gay brother (God rest his gentle soul) said it was his "CHOICE", made of his own free will. But, he never could understand why he made it.

As to homophobia....it is based in the primative part of the brain called Basal Ganglia (or lizard brain), where all of our basic emotions, reactions andinstinctual behavior originates (what little instincts humans have, that is).
The lizard brain fears/rejects/attacks anything it percieves as a threat to the species, or procreation thereof.

Yes, I'm sure being gay is hard. But so is being the automatic target of blame, hate and anger by every dissatisfied group that has decided to vilify white, heterosexual, Christian males.

So let's just cry in each other's beer, okay?

1182 days ago
112.

LolYoureSoMad    

The guy can do whatever the hell he pleases, I say. More power to him!

As for the "[...] flaunting their lifestyle" arguments, I'd say the fact you're spouting an opinion speaks for itself. You're on TMZ...sort of speaks volumes on the type of person you are - one who tries to make other people's business that of your own, as though you were actually involved- idiots...I swear. Suck it, haters. <3 La la la.

1182 days ago
113.

Shastafarian    

Of course you shouldn't be allowed to parade in his work uni in a gay parade..thats even crazy to think it should be allowed.

Thats the problem with these gay nuts... they all want to parade around and flaunt their misfortune..

get a grip.

1182 days ago
114.

Meemee2000    

If you can't wear your uniform to take pictures in Playboy, you can't wear it to a gay pride parade. The uniform is for official duty ONLY!

1182 days ago
115.

Larz R    

Why can't this man march in regular street clothes like everyone else? What is the importance of marching in uniform? He isn't on duty- he shouldn't be wearing his uniform. Heck, I can't even put a political sticker or anything 'suggestive' on my car at work, because it could offend or 'insult' clients of my business, regardless of my or the companies personal beliefs. This guy is out for some quick cash and 15 minutes. GO AWAY.

1182 days ago
116.

Bob    

Simple solution: Adopt a policy forbidding wearing the uniform when off duty except to and from work. Problem solved.

1182 days ago
117.

JoJo    

I am all for gay rights.That is THE QUESTION OR POINT.I amalso a nurse and it's well-known that nurses and cops have a respectful "bond."Nurses and Policeman often march in Parades such as The St. Patricks Day Parade..The BIG ONE in N.Y.C. wearing their uniforms.After the parade when the nurses and policemen go to bars todrink and celebrate ...It is considered WRONG and DISRESPECTFUL to drink while in uniform.Why should this be any different?When wearing a required and earned uniform that is representative of a certian school,government agency..there are RULES for everyone,including marching in a parade non-representative of your earned and respected trade.

1182 days ago
118.

JoJo    

There is that such policy in Nyc at least as I tried to explain.Though for freedom to be with whomever you chose male/male..female/female..The issue is you need not wear your uniform,nor should you be allowed to as it is misrepresntative and actually unlawful.Pilots aren't allowed to go out drinking in their unifroms and the fact this guy has Gloria"I'll take anything for PR" Allred as his attorney will only get him back walking the beat...she's a blood-sucker.

1182 days ago
119.

Michelle     

It is considered WRONG and DISRESPECTFUL to drink while in uniform
@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

That is your opinion

Im from NYC and everyone buys police officers in uniform (who are off duty after the parade) drinks. In fact bartenders refuse to take their money. No one thinks its disrespectful at all and Ive lived here my whole life and go to the parade every year. Never once saw a nurse in uniform so I have no clue where that came from. They arent exactly taking a bullet.

1182 days ago
120.

Keith    

There is no issue as long as this guy still abides by the standards set forth by the department for all officers. They already employ him as a gay officer, so attending a parade hardly discredits the department.

Too bad I DO agree with it being the departments call. So until something changes, they get to delegate where officers can present their uniforms.

1182 days ago
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