Let’s Begin with a Short History Lesson

The term “Pig” has been applied to persons who were generally disliked, as early as the 1540s. However, it is believed that the derogatory slang meaning for “police officer” has been used as early as 1749. The first documented reference to this is found in the Dictionary of Vulgar Tongue: A Dictionary of Buckish Slang, University Wit and Pickpocket Eloquence, published in London in 1811. In the dictionary the line, “The pigs frisked my panney, and nailed my screws.” was found. The meaning: “The officers searched my house, and seized my picklocks.”

That same 1811 slang dictionary also gives one of the definitions for “Pig” as a “Bow Street Officer”. The Bow Street Runners, known as the first modern police force, were a group hired in 1749 by magistrates in London’s Bow Street neighborhood, to do investigations, prevent crime and apprehend criminals. Though, the Bow Street Runners weren’t typically patrolmen, but more detectives, it is also believed that the term “Pig” was an allusion to the Bow Street detectives who were sniffing out crime, as a pig sniffs with its snout, since a related documented slang term referred to police informants as “noses”.

Since that time, the derogatory use of the word “Pig” towards police officers has become fixed in common street parlance and has remained ever since. There was a resurgence of its use in the U.S. in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s when protesters hurled the term at police officers. “Pig” continues to be used in a derogatory sense towards the police to this day. Although at first, U.S. police officers were outraged at such disrespect, many soon wore the name as a badge of honor by creating an acronym for “PIG” that translates to Pride, Integrity, Guts.


Why I chose “Stinkin’ Irish Pig” as the name for my business.

Being an Irish/American, I was able to trace my Irish ancestry in the U.S. back to the early 1800’s. Beginning in the mid-1800’s my Irish ancestry also revealed a long history of Irish/American police officers with their roots in New York. These officers included my great grandfather, grandfather and my father, as well as many other relatives that I have also identified as police officers in the New York area. My family eventually moved to South Florida where my father finished his career as a police Captain. I followed my families tradition and became a police officer, graduating from the police academy in 1974.

Throughout my career, I was exposed to both the positive and negative sides of law enforcement. Early in my career, my fellow officers and I were routinely referred to as “Pigs”. However, we all chose to wear that term as a badge of honor throughout our careers. In 2015, I retired after more than 40 years in law enforcement and continue to this day to honor my chosen profession by using the acronym for “Pig” (Pride, Integrity, Guts) on many occasions, including in my company logo.

The inspiration for choosing and trademarking the phrase ’Stinkin’ Irish Pig” for my business, comes from the 1987 movie, The Untouchables. In one of the most memorable scenes in the movie, Andy Garcia, portraying an Italian/American police recruit, was approached by Sean Connery, portraying a veteran Irish Chicago cop. In that scene, Connery spoke to Garcia and called him a “Thieving Wop” and a “lying member of a no-good race”. In response, Garcia pulled out a gun and put the gun barrel under Connery’s chin, calling him a “Stinking Irish Pig”.

I always thought that was one of the best scenes in the movie and still laugh about it to this day.

Now that I am retired, I want to keep active and continue to honor my profession as well as support those that sacrifice every day by standing the Thin Blue Line!

Stinkin’ Irish Pig, LLC to me and hopefully to others, will honor the law enforcement profession through a “bit of craic” and “slagging”, which as police officers, we needed on a daily basis to help us cope with the negative sides of our jobs.

My pledge is to honor my chosen profession through the products I sell, as well as donate a portion of the proceeds to police charities and ultimately to the families of those that gave the ultimate sacrifice.

Thomas A. Carney (Retired Law Enforcement)
Stinkin’ Irish Pig, LLC

A portion of the proceeds of all sales goes to the following law enforcement charities:

Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation

Concerns of Police Survivors

Garda Benevolent Trust Fund

Retired Police K9 Foundation

Even if you choose not to purchase one of our products, please consider donating to one of these deserving charities!

“A sense of humor keen enough to show a man his own absurdities will keep him from the commission of all sins, or nearly all, save those worth committing”.

Samuel Butler

Visiting the Village of Carney, County Sligo, Ireland in 2019 with my Wife Debbie.
My Father, Captain William Carney, Miami (Dade County) Florida, 1958