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Nashville comedian, firefighter sues Metro over suspension from tweets

Nashville fire department
Posted at 3:41 PM, Apr 11, 2022

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — A Nashville firefighter filed suit against the Metro government Monday after his suspension that stemmed from tweets he created on his comedic Twitter account.

The suit for Joshua Lipscomb — or comedian Sir Joshua Black — surrounded Metro's policies for social media and claimed the city interfered with his right to free speech. As a result of the tweets, which discussed license plate readers coming online in the city after a Metro Council vote, the Nashville Fire Department suspended Lipscomb for 16 days without pay.

Black has never linked his work with Metro with his comedic presence on social media.

“Mr. Lipscomb’s social posts did not include his real name or any affiliation with the NFD,” said Tricia Herzfeld, who is representing Lipscomb along with noted civil rights attorney Abby Rubenfeld of Rubenfeld Law Office, PC. “Firefighters risk their lives every day on behalf of the people of Nashville. They should not have to give up their constitutional rights as well.”

Lipscomb started his role with NFD in 2017.