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Sussex Progressive Democrats should fight to take down state flag

August 13, 2019

Well, it seems kudos are in order for the Civil Rights Team of the Progressive Democrats of Sussex County. 

Last year, they ran several full-page ads in the Cape Gazette calling for ending state funding for the museum (Marvel Carriage Museum - operated by the Georgetown Historical Society) saying legislators should refrain from supporting any organization that affirms racism. 

The ads were written over local gadfly Don Flood’s name and their goal has been achieved. 

The society lost $14,443 in grant-in-aid funding because they have a Confederate flag and a monument honoring approximately 95 Americans from Delaware who fought for or supported the Confederacy.

Sen. Trey Paradee, D-Dover, recommended the funds be eliminated and the compliant Senate passed the bill unanimously on the last day of the legislative session, reportedly without discussing the decision with the historical society. 

A News Journal article dated May 8, 2007, by J. L. Miller about the unveiling of the monument on May 12, 2007, mentioned among the Delawareans honored on the monument were former Gov. William H.H. Ross and David White, a slave from Georgetown reportedly owned by a Union man. 

The ceremony was attended by Democrat then-Gov. Ruth Ann Minner with the keynote speech by H.K. Edgerton, an African-American and former head of the NAACP in North Carolina. 

In disparaging fashion, Sen. Paradee characterized the museum’s display as “their silly monument.”  But the senator forgot to mention that, according to a report in The News Journal on June 24, 2015, “The state Legislature in 1862 rejected an offer from President Abraham Lincoln to pay slave-owners for freeing slaves in their households.” There were about 1,800 slaves in Delaware at the time. 

Maybe the PDSC’s next fight should be to have the Legislature publicly condemn their indignity and insist that they take down the Delaware flag or, at least, replace one of those white guys in the coat of arms.

Geary Foertsch 
Rehoboth

 

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