'We The People' Call For Tulsa Police Major's Resignation After 'This Is War' Article
TULSA, Oklahoma - A Tulsa organization is calling for a Tulsa police major’s resignation.
We the People Oklahoma, wants Major Travis Yates, supervisor over the Gilcrease Division, to resign because of an article he wrote for the online publication lawofficer.com.
In the article Yates writes, “We are at war,” when writing about the recent shootings of police officers in Dallas and Baton Rouge; but, We the People Oklahoma wants to know at war with whom?
They say that kind of language, right now, is divisive, irresponsible and harmful.
"I don't think anybody that watched that play out, didn't think, this looks like a war. And I think, there's no question in my mind, there are individuals targeting police officers," Yates said.
The major said he wants to be judged for his work overall, not one article, he says was intended to urge officers to protect themselves.
He points to the 250 community events his division has held in north Tulsa, his attendance at Tulsa's Black Lives Matter protest and meeting with the head of Racism Stinks.
Yates said he tried to meet with the leader of We the People two years ago, but was refused.
He said the article was written from a national perspective.
"We have a much different relationship and environment here in Tulsa than we see nationally," Yates said.
His article says, in part, "We have leaders of state police saying we must all be re-trained, celebrities calling us murderers and even the President saying our profession has embedded racism. Black Lives Matter continues to be invited to the White House and given a voice despite violence breaking out all around them."
We the People says “Yates' obvious resentments, bias and preconceived misconceptions are dangerous," and "it's obvious relationships between some members of the public and law enforcement are fragile and this type of inflammatory rhetoric frays the thread even more. We cannot have a commander, who is sworn to protect and serve, behave so irresponsibly."
Yates said “I'm not going to resign. I love Tulsa, I love Tulsa Police Department, love this community. We have much more work to be done."