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A thirteen-word comment made by a Baltimore County Delegate, Robin Grammer, under a Facebook Post that called for some Baltimore County school employees to hit the road or become the target of further investigation, has turned into targeting Grammer as having racist motivations.
“No deal. Hang them high and leave it for the village to see,” Grammer said in response to the post asking for nondescript employees to leave the school system without further scrutiny.
In a story published by The Baltimore Sun late Monday, ‘Hang them high’: Baltimore Co. delegate draws fire for Facebook comment aimed at school officials,’ reporters set the stage for the implication that Grammer’s statement was racist.
While his comment was interpreted in The Sun article to mean the historical lynching of African Americans, what Grammer says he meant was that employees in the school system who have engaged in suspicious conduct should be held high on display, not a throwback to a saying which means “hanged” or “lynched.”
In a statement published in The Sun article, Grammer said, “What I meant is that I don’t believe in cutting deals with criminals so that they can walk away without consequence to terrorize another school system…The public should clearly see accountability for corruption…”
In The Sun article, Del. Charles Snydor criticized Grammer for his choice of words. “Allusion to the lynching and public display” of schools officials “harkens back to a dark period in this state’s history,” Snydor said in The Sun article.
Maybe Del. Snydor, a Democrat who serves on of the House Judiciary Committee and the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland, should take a history lesson as the following quote indicates:
In his book “Fear Itself,” historian Ira Katznelson wrote, “During the Wilson years… the composite of racism and progressivism came to dominate the Democratic Party.”
Last week, Grammer and Snydor, who both represent districts in Baltimore County, spoke at a Baltimore County School Board meeting, before the unexpected approval of Darryl L. Williams as the system’s permanent superintendent.
Grammar, a Republican, asked board members to consider candidates other than interim Superintendent Verletta White for the permanent position. Snydor, a Democrat, asked the board to vote in her favor.
White, who applied for the permanent position, has led the system for two years since former Superintendent Dallas Dance left amid a criminal investigation that led to four perjury convictions after he lied on financial disclosure statements.
White also failed to disclose a consulting job on her financial statements and was cited in 2017 with ethics violations by an ethics panel, although she has not been accused of criminal misconduct.
Dance spent four months in a Virginia jail last year. Since that time, concerns about the system’s procurement practices during Dance’s tenure have been under public scrutiny to which Grammer was responding with his comment.
In a separate post by Grammer last week on his own delegate Facebook page, Grammer expressed his approval of the board’s decision to hire Williams, an African American and longtime educator and current area associate superintendent for Montgomery County Public Schools.
In a surprise vote on Tuesday, two-thirds of the school board voted for the new leader. In a Facebook comment post following the vote, Grammer said in response to Williams’ appointment, “Never be afraid to stand up for what you believe in! We won this fight, and with your help, we will continue to win!”
Unlike The Baltimore Sun, the Post might call Del. Robbin Grammer on the carpet for numerous issues dealing with his political agenda, however, racism would not be one of them.