CHICAGO (CBS)–Chicago police officer John Venckus has acknowledged that he used the term “libatards” on social media — a word some find derogatory.
Beneath a Chicago Tribune Facebook article on Monday about the Pearl Jam concert being delayed due to weather, Officer John Venckus commented, “Good take cover libatards[.]” The article was posted on Chicago Breaking News’ Facebook page.
The background photo accompanying John Venckus’ Facebook page shows Venckus and other police officers in riot gear on State Street in Chicago. The post is dated May 27, 2017.
“Libtard” or “libatard” are typically used as derogatory terms referring to people on the left side of the political spectrum.
Reached by phone, Venckus confirmed he posted the comment. Asked the meaning of the post, he told CBS 2, “Just that it was raining, take cover.”
Venckus says there is nothing negative about the term “libatard.” “Libatards are used all the time for people who are called liberals,” he told CBS 2. He added that he does not know if Pearl Jam fans tend to lean to the left politically.
This is not the first time a Chicago police officer has posted political views on Facebook. In 2017, DNAinfo reported that Chicago police officer John Catanzara faced a reprimand after making political statements online. Two other officers were reprimanded after a photo on Instagram showed them taking a knee.
CBS 2 has reached out to the Chicago Police Department for comment and is awaiting a response.