An Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) employee shared a meme on LinkedIn, sparking outrage among Muslim American groups saying it dehumanizes them, Newsweek reported.
The meme, which shows three unopened brown patio umbrellas, is accompanied by the caption, “I spent 30 minutes talking to them to learn more about their culture until the barman told me they were umbrellas.”
David Jennings, the ICE Field Office Director who shared the post, also added his own caption which stated, “I was trying to use lessons from my terrorism mentor Brig Barker. Guess I need more work,” according to a screenshot captured by the San Francisco Chronicle.
The post was shared three months ago and has since been taken down. Jennings has also offered an apology, saying it was not his intention to cause such a stir and the post was to “poke fun at myself.”
“I am horrified that the post would be taken as anything other than a dig at myself, but upon further reflection, I understand how it could be interpreted otherwise and am truly sorry. It was not my intention to offend anyone and I hope that the explanation of my intent assuages any hurt the post may have inadvertently caused,” Jennings wrote in a statement to the San Francisco Chronicle.
The controversy came just one day after the Trump administration reversed a policy that exempted pregnant immigrants from being detained. Now, ICE officers will have to treat pregnant women just as they would any other detainees, The Hill noted.