The deputy district attorney for the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office is extremely racist, turns out.
Deputy District Attorney Michael Selyem has quite a record of racist social media posts, including a particularly nauseating comment he made about California Congresswoman Maxine Waters.
In June, Selyem replied to a Facebook post about Waters’ calls for the public to challenge Trump administration officials with a post calling her a “loud-mouthed c#nt in the ghetto.” He went on to write that “you would think someone would have shot this bitch by now.”
This is just another example of the right’s cherished tradition of being overtly racist toward Maxine Waters. When Trump isn’t claiming she has a low IQ, talking heads are mocking her hair and goons are sending her racist voicemails threatening to kill her. But sure let’s pretend Rand Paul is the face of harassment against members of Congress.
But wait, there’s more truly vile bullshit from Selyem. From Newsweek:
Selyem has also taken aim at former first lady Michelle Obama, the victim of a police shooting and Mexican immigrants in other social media posts. “That shitbag got exactly what he desrved,” Selyem commented as part of an online argument over a police shooting of a civilian. “You reap what you sow. And by the way go fuck yourself you liberal shitbag.”
On Mexican immigrants, Selyem posted a photo of a man in a sombrero with the caption, “Mexican word of the day: Hide.” He also shared a manipulated photo of Michelle Obama holding a sign that said “Trump grabbed my penis.”
He is a Trump fan, if you can believe it. The San Bernardino Sun reported that his now deleted Facebook account included several posts praising President Trump and white immigrants:
Beneath a Facebook post offering free tickets to Trump’s presidential inauguration, Selyem wrote, “I love that all of you liberal f—–g p—–s are so filled with hate. Gonna be a long 8 years for you scumbags. choo choo trump”
Beneath a Breitbart News post about the Budweiser Super Bowl ad that celebrated the immigrant success story of the beer empire’s founder, Selyem wrote: “I am all for white males immigrating here legally and starting a business. It is the terrorist a–holes sneaking in here wanting to kill me an (sic) my family that I am opposed to. I cannot believe how shallow democrats are. They must really think people are stupid. I guess that is evident because they actually thought Hilary (sic) Clinton could win a presidential election… TWICE!!! LMFAO!!!”
While Southern California activist group Santa Ana League of United Latin American Citizens have called for his resignation, and the hashtag #FireSelyem is gaining traction on social media, there doesn’t seem to be a sense of urgency among Selyem’s colleagues and peers.
District attorney-elect Jason Anderson called Selyem’s social media posts a “little bit salty.” Stephen Levine, a San Bernardino attorney who acts as Selyem counterpart in court on a regular basis, doesn’t see much of a problem.
“I do not defend the tenor of his posts but defend his right to his beliefs,” Levine told the Sun. “I have seen no evidence that his personal beliefs have influenced his professional responsibilities and prefer to give him the benefit of the doubt.”
Meanwhile, outgoing District Attorney Mike Ramos told the San Bernardino Sun he was aware of Selyem’s social media comments and that they don’t represent the views held by the District Attorney’s Office. However he couldn’t comment further because it was a “personal matter.”
Given that Selyem is the lead attorney for the county’s gang prosecution unit, this exposé is even more alarming. Gang enforcement is already prone to racial bias; flimsy evidence of gang affiliation is the norm in communities of color, leading to enhanced sentences or even deportation. A committed and public racist at the helm of a unit that is already prone to being really fucking racist? What could go wrong?
At this very moment, San Bernardino County should be reviewing Selyem’s conviction track record for potential bias.
An earlier version of this story cited a Newsweek report quoting outgoing District Attorney Mike Ramos, in which Ramos was reported to have said he couldn’t comment on the Selyem controversy because it was “a personal matter.” According to the San Bernardino Sun, Ramos actually said it was a “a personnel matter.” Jezebel has updated the quote and edited the kicker to reflect the change. We regret the error.