(NEWSER) – Lt. Tim McMillan put up a Facebook post Oct. 1 about an encounter he'd had with a young African-American man and how he wished relations between police and the community could be better.
The Garden City, Ga., cop had no idea how much of a chord he'd strike with that note, now shared more than 142,000 times and leading to so many messages for McMillan that he set up a Facebook page. "When I originally made the social media status ... I did so because I truly care for people," he wrote in a Saturday post on the new page. "I care for all human beings and wish all people ... a life of happiness and peace."
In his original post, McMillan had expressed frustration at pulling over a young black man (for texting and driving) and seeing how frightened he was dealing with a police officer.
"I truly don't even care [whose] fault it is that young man was so scared to have a police officer at his window," he wrote then. "I just wish somebody would fix it." But apparently not everyone agreed with that message, as McMillan reveals the "stress and sadness" he's experienced at some of the negativity being lobbed his way.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution notes that the "condescending comments," random accusations, and nitpicking at his original remarks have been bad enough to spur him to take down photos of his wife and three kids on social media, and he sometimes wishes he'd never written the post.
But in his Saturday note, he thanks those who've written him positive messages, and he vows "so long as I have a voice and people … are saying I have made a difference in their lives … I will continue to speak."