High school band performance depicts police, receives backlash

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A high school band performance during Friday night football in Brookhaven is receiving backlash.

WJTV 12’s Lanaya Lewis has details on how the performance is bringing back memories from last week’s deadly shooting of two officers.

People say Friday night football at Brookhaven high school took a turn for the worse, after a halftime performance by the forest hill high school band left them speechless.

“I was sad because of what happened last weekend, and it felt like they were making fun of it,” said Sarah McDonald, a Brookhaven High School student.

After the performance, a picture surface on social media showing band members pointing fake guns at pretend officers. People in this area say it was in bad taste, especially after last week’s shooting.

“It just doesn’t matter in this day and age,” said Janet Moore, a Brookhaven resident. “It’s just totally bad taste.”

“Our people are hurting right now, and to bring that to us a couple of days after we’re burying two officers, was just inappropriate,” said Rep. Becky Currie, R-Brookhaven.  

Senator Currie wasn’t the only state leader to speak out about the performance. The governor took to Twitter.

He tweeted: “This is unacceptable in a civilized society. Someone should be held accountable.”

Jackson public schools, which oversees Forest Hill High School, released a statement saying students were acting out a scene in the movie “John Q.” They went on to say:

“JPS has a great deal of respect and appreciation for our law enforcement partners.  The band’s performance does not depict the values and people in our community, and was incredibly insensitive to the students, families, law enforcement officials, and the entire Brookhaven community.”

Jackson Mayor Chowke Lumumba, also issued a statement, mentioning there is an active investigation into the performance. It reads in part:

“It is the responsibility of adults to offer guidance to youth. Our students should have been instructed that this was neither the time or place for that performance.”

The Brookhaven school district also released a statement in response to JPS:

“We appreciate the JPS Superintendent Dr. Erick Greene and the administration band director and coaches at Forest Hill High School for reaching out to us today to offer apologies for the halftime show Friday night. In light of the recent tragic deaths of two Brookhaven police officers, it is important that our school districts stand united in support of law enforcement.”

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