'Flipping off' President Donald Trump gets woman fired

Kristopher Drake
November 7, 2017

Briskman told the Huffington Post that her employer, government contractor Akima LLC, fired her for using the photo as an avatar when she told them about it. "How is that any less "obscene" than me flipping off the president?" she asked.

The employer of a woman seen in a photo raising a middle finger at President Donald Trump's motorcade during a Saturday bicycle ride has ignited a debate over free speech and whether her firing infringed on hers.

Briskman worked in showcasing and interchanges at Akima. Her employer said she had violated the company's social media policy.

"They said, "We're separating from you.' Basically, you can not have "lewd" or 'obscene" things in your social media", said Briskman, who said her social media accounts do not mention her employer. "Basically, you can't have contained "obscene" on the social networks". She said that she emphasized to the company that she wasn't working when the photo was taken but was told, as a government contractor, Akima's business could be hurt by the shot. Within days, they fired her, Briskman told HuffPost.

In fact, the person he aimed that comment at was so offended by the coarse nature of it that he challenged the director on representing Akima that way. On Monday afternoon, the company's website appeared to be inaccessible. She claims a colleague had obvious ties to the company in his Facebook profile when he called someone a "fucking libtard asshole" over the summer, but was allowed to keep his job.


She was aware of the comment because monitoring Facebook was one of the tasks that fell under her purview at the company.

Since Virginia is an employment-at-will state, Akima has full discretion over who it fires. News outlets picked up the story when it appeared in a White House pool report. "The motorcade had to slow and the cyclist caught up, still offering the finger, before turning off in a different direction", wrote David Smith of the Guardian.

Briskman also talks to the Washington Post, explaining that she is indeed a critic of Trump's political policies and behavior as president.

"I'm thinking, he's at the damn golf course again". "He pulled promotions for open enlistment in ObamaCare", Briskman said. Only one-third of Puerto Rico has power. In October, she was riding along what is her usual cycling path in Northern Virginia, when the motorcade drove by.

"I'm angry about where our country is right now".

Other reports by Ligue1talk

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