Is it Legal to Flip Off a Police Officer Here in Texas?
So, listen if you decide to flip off a police officer you're probably gonna bring unwanted attention to whatever it is you're doing -- even if it's nothing. But is is legal to do it? Can you legally give "the bird" to a cop while traveling though Dallas, TX for instance?
I wouldn't do it. But, hey, let's be honest, it's a great way to relieve some stress on the roadway... but can you get in legal trouble for directing that finger of yours toward an officer of the law?
While I'm pretty sure we'll all agree it's not the wisest decision to make, the First Amendment does allow every single frustrated American the right to do it. That's correct, you are well within your right to raise a middle finger, and even to cuss out a cop.
But heads up, be careful what you say during your tirade. Saying something that could be interpreted as "fighting words" or lobbing out threats to a police officer are not protected under the free speech law.
Speech that incites violence in another or in a crowd is not protected. Those are considered “fighting words” and, as such, are not protected. - The Rodriguez Law Group
And if you plan on engaging a servant of the law as such you should also keep in mind that using foul language could be considered disorderly conduct or a criminal threat. In that case, they will most likely be ticketed or arrested.
When cursing at the police contains threats, it is no longer protected speech. Therefore, while calling the police a name is protected, threatening to “get you” may not be. That may be construed as disorderly conduct or criminal threat. - The Rodriguez Law Group
While it is a police officer's job to keep their communities safe, remember that officers who are annoyed or feel threatened know how to use the law to deliver maximum fines and sentences.