Donald Trump’s hate-filled rhetoric may not suffer any consequences, given the Republicans in Congress’ aversion to crossing the president. However, his ugly reference do inspire many hate groups to act upon their emotions. Those do have consequences, like this one.
Andrew Kovalic of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania alleges he is a member of Proud Boys, a hate group. The Philadelphia-based Media Mobilizing Project created a petition calling for Kovalic’s removal from his job. He had been on his job for 10 years when the petition with 373 signatures went to Comcast.
Media Mobilizing Project decided to do the petition after it discovered a viral tweet by @AntiFashGordon. It was referencing a local We the People rally and its details.. Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) has designated this a hate group.
Kovalic allegedly joined the Harrisburg Proud Boys chapter of the group. According to the petition, Kovalic was assigned to the security team at the rally. The petition claimed that act alone was grounds for termination from Comcast.
The watchdog group also pointed to a photo of Kovalic wearing his Comcast uniform. In it, he was giving the “OK” hand gesture. In the alt-right world that gesture is both a symbol of white power and a trolling tactic.
Media Mobilizing Project considers itself a watchdog of media and telecommunications corporation. It addressed the petition to the Comcast CEO, Brian Roberts.
As a result of the watchdog’s action, according to Philadelphia magazine, Roberts responded that Kovalic was “an embarrassment and insult to…Philadelphia and the country:”
‘Employing Andrew Kovalic, a member of the hate group the Proud Boys, is an embarrassment and an insult to the communities of Philadelphia and the country…Comcast should terminate his employment immediately, and state clearly and publicly that it will not tolerate racist and fascist speech, organizing and actions from its employees.’
Comcast also released a separate statement to Philadelphia magazine. It read that the organization had fired Kovalic:
‘There’s no place for disrespectful, offensive behavior in our culture. The individual is no longer employed by Comcast.’
Rally organizers advertised their event this way:
‘Show Philly what patriotism really is. (Invited are) patriots, militia, constitution loving Americans (and) pro good cop, pro ICE, pro law and order, pro life, (sic) pro American (sic) value, pro gun and anti illegal immigration. Any violence, racism, or display of hate by any group or individual is extremely prohibited.’
When the Philadelphia magazine asked the Proud Boys Harrisburg chapter to comment, this was the response it received via email including words that were somewhat reminiscent of Supreme Court justice, Brian Kavanaugh’s hearing rant:
‘We like beer. We still like beer. Have a Dick pic. Sincerely, The Greatest Fucking Fraternity in the History of Mankind.’
A Media Mobilizing Project representative told Philadelphia magazine:
‘Comcast has done the right thing by not continuing to employ a person planning a rally focused on hate for Black, Brown, immigrant, Jewish and many other communities. But if Comcast truly wants to erase the hate, it has to make a stronger statement in support of communities under threat in these precarious times, and note that it will never tolerate racist, fascist, anti-Semitic and white supremacist words, actions, and organizing by its employees
Kovalic deleted his LinkedIn profile, which noted that he had been a Comcast communications tech since 2008. Calls to him by the Philadelphia magazine went unanswered.
Featured image is a screenshot via YouTube.