Academy Award-winning filmmaker Quentin Tarantino at Saturday’s RiseUpOctober rally in New York City. (wochit Entertainment / CC BY-SA 2.0)

The president of a union representing New York City police officers has called for a boycott of Quentin Tarantino’s films following remarks the director made Saturday at a rally against police brutality.

The Oscar-winning director flew in from California to join demonstrators who marched along the city’s streets as part of the three-day RiseUpOctober protest against killings by police across the U.S. He gave a speech accompanied by images including that of Justin Smith, who died in police custody in 1999 after spitting on police officers.

“I’m a human being with a conscience,” Tarantino told his fellow protesters, according to the New York Post. “And if you believe there’s murder going on, then you need to rise up and stand up against it. I’m here to say I’m on the side of the murdered. When I see murders, I do not stand by … I have to call a murder a murder and I have to call the murderers the murderers.”

In a statement Sunday, Patrick Lynch, president of the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, denounced Tarantino. “It’s no surprise that someone who makes a living glorifying crime and violence is a cop-hater too,” he said. “The police officers that Quentin Tarantino calls ‘murderers’ aren’t living in one of his depraved big-screen fantasies — they’re risking and sometimes sacrificing their lives to protect communities from real crime and mayhem.

“New Yorkers need to send a message to this purveyor of degeneracy that he has no business coming to our city to peddle his slanderous ‘Cop Fiction,’ ” he added. “It’s time for a boycott of Quentin Tarantino’s films.”

This video from Democracy Now! has footage of Tarantino’s speech at Saturday’s rally, where he shared a stage with academic Cornel West and other activists.

–Posted by Roisin Davis

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