What We Can Learn from the Indiana Attorney General's Office

Lora Bentley

Thursday, USA Today reported that an Indiana deputy attorney general was fired for inappropriate remarks on Twitter.


The whole thing started when Jeff Cox, a deputy attorney general since 2003, replied to a tweet by nonprofit news magazine Mother Jones that riot police in Madison, Wis., had been ordered to remove union supporters from the state capitol. Cox replied, "use live ammunition" and then called the protestors "political enemies" and "thugs."


In the course of the ensuing Twitter exchange with the Mother Jones reporter responsible for the tweet, Cox indicated that he advocated deadly force because the union supporters were "physically threatening legally elected officials."


Though Cox said he regrets his poor choice of words, he did not intend for the post to be taken literally, the story says.


Yes, it's social media cautionary tale number 2,053 for employees, but employers can learn something just as valuable from this situation.


A spokesman for the Indiana Attorney General's Office, who is quoted in the story, says the office does not (yet) have an official policy on employee use of social networking tools. Instead, he pointed to an employee handbook provision requiring employees to act in a professional manner during and after work hours.


Don't wait until something embarrassing happens before you craft your policies and then educate your employees about them. They're much more effective as a preventative tool than when they're used to clean up a public relations mess.

Add Comment      Leave a comment on this blog post
Feb 24, 2011 5:59 AM Randall Hancock Randall Hancock  says:

What's wrong with you. Don't you realize that American people have live ammunition too. Do you really want to start this kind of war. America was founded by people who resisted government oppression. Some of them have more guns than you have rooms in your house and more ammo than you've had meals in your life. I know guys who have killed something every day since they were seven years old. We don't need such irresponsible remarks from our leaders.

Feb 24, 2011 11:55 AM JNagarya JNagarya  says: in response to Randall Hancock

I'm fed up with the history- -- and law -- illiterates who push that self-serving false view.  We call the Founders FOUNDERS becasue they FOUNDED gov't.  And they FOUNDED gov'ts becasue they were PRO- -- NOT ANTI- gov't.

As for the Founders "resisting gov't oppression": how many gov'ts did the Founders attack and overthrow?  I'll provide you the number, because gun-nuts can't count that high:



Yes, ZERO.

Why ZERO?  Becaseu the only gov't opposed to them was located in London -- and they didn't attack or overthrow that gov't.  What they resisted and defeated was a colonial policy, and only as it applied to their colonies.

All other relevant gov'ts were in the Founders' colonies, and were founded and operated by the Founders.  I assure you: The Founders NEVER attacked or overthrew THEMSELVES.

Neither did the British attack or overthrow ANY of those gov'ts.

Feb 25, 2011 12:02 PM JNagarya JNagarya  says:

Cox, who swore an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution and laws of the United Stastes, was focused on the problems of the country: the fact that the Constitution includes a First Amendment, which protects the exrpession of views Cox disapproves without being threatened with violence for expressing said views.

Now Cox is out of a job, with no union to go his bail . . .

Feb 28, 2011 2:13 AM Disgusted citizen Disgusted citizen  says:

This Cox is nuts. We have the most heavily armed civilian population in

the free world. Hitler was smart, Cox is stupid. Hitler took everyone's

guns away before he started killing off the opposition. Does he honestly believe police would gun down innocent people?

Next he has to get rid of the local police and hire Haliburtons mercenaries

to enforce their will. I'm sure the fat  cats that bought the elections for the

Republican candidates would be more than willing finance the massacre.


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