Woman who showed the middle finger to US President Donald Trump fired from job
50-year-old Juli Briskman said her action was a result of her anger and frustration at US President Donald Trumpworld Updated: Nov 07, 2017 22:25 IST
A woman who gave the finger to US President Donald Trump’s motorcade last month has been fired by her employer after a photo of the incident went viral.
And the reason given to 50-year-old Juli Briskman by her employer, government contractor Akima LLC? Not that she had flipped the bird at the president, but that she violated the firm’s social media policy by using the photo as her profile picture on Facebook and Twitter.
The image of Briskman on a bicycle, giving the middle finger to Trump’s motorcade as the vehicles made their way along a road in Sterling, Virginia, was taken by a White House photographer travelling with the president.
At the time, Trump was going back from his golf course to the White House. Briskman was out for a Saturday bike ride when the convoy of black SUVs drove past.
The photo went viral soon after and was used by numerous media outlets round the world.
Briskman, a mother of two and a supporter of the Democratic Party, told media outlets she decided to inform Akima’s human resource department about the incident when she returned to work after the weekend as the photo had been widely circulated online.
The next day, her bosses called her for a meeting and informed her that she had violated the firm’s social media policy by using the photo as her profile picture.
“They said, ‘We’re separating from you,’” Briskman told Huffington Post. “Basically, you cannot have ‘lewd’ or ‘obscene’ things in your social media. So they were calling flipping him off ‘obscene’.”
The bosses also told her that the photo could hurt Akima’s business as a government contractor.
Briskman, who was part of Akima’s marketing team for a little more than six months, said she explained that she wasn’t at work when the incident happened and her social media pages did not name her employer.
She also explained what was going through her head when she gave the middle finger to Trump’s motorcade several times on that day.
“My finger said what I was feeling. I’m angry and I’m frustrated,” she told CNN.
Briskman listed the reasons for her anger at Trump. “Health care doesn’t pass, but you try to dismantle it from the inside,” she said. “Five hundred people get shot in Las Vegas, you’re doing nothing about it. You know, white supremacists have this big march and hurt a bunch of people down in Charlottesville and you call them good people.”
She added she was also angry that Trump was at the golf course at a time when the US administration if dealing with several weighty issues such as the damage caused by two hurricanes in Puerto Rico.
Briskman said a male colleague at Akima, who allegedly posted lewd comments on his Facebook page, was reprimanded and allowed to keep his job after he apologised and deleted the post.
There was no comment from Akima on the incident.