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A Michigan state senator felt compelled to issue an apology this weekend after backlash erupted last week over him wearing a Confederate flag face mask during a Senate vote at the state Capitol.
Seen below, state Sen. Dale W. Zorn’s apology came after he first tried to deny having worn a Confederate flag face mask:
I’m sorry for my choice of pattern on the face mask I wore yesterday on the Senate floor. I did not intend to offend anyone; however, I realize that I did, and for that I am sorry. Those who know me best know that I do not support the things this pattern represents.
— Dale W. Zorn (@DaleZornSenate) April 25, 2020
My actions were an error in judgment for which there are no excuses and I will learn from this episode.
— Dale W. Zorn (@DaleZornSenate) April 25, 2020
“It wasn’t a Confederate flag,” he’d said a day earlier to local news station WLNS. “It was a mask that my wife made for me and she wanted me to wear it. I told my wife it probably will raise some eyebrows, but it was not a Confederate flag.”
Despite denying that he’d worn a Confederate flag mask, he went on to defend Confederate flags.
“Even if it was a Confederate flag, you know, we should be talking about teaching our national history in schools,” he said. “And that’s part of our national history and it’s something we can’t just throw away because it is part of our history.”
“And if we want to make sure that the atrocities that happened during that time doesn’t happen again, we should be teaching it. Our kids should know what that flag stands for.”
Byron Thomas, a black former University of South Carolina student who penned a column in 2015 detailing his love of the Confederate flag and bemoaning the hatred and bigotry he experiences for that love, would likely agree with Zorn’s logic.
“I’ve been called ‘an Uncle Tom’ and ‘a sellout,’ and accused of despising my race,” he wrote for The Washington Post at the time.
“Let me be clear: I love the skin that I am in. God gave me my skin color, but he also gave me freedom to think for myself and the right to stand by my beliefs. My skin color should not determine how I think, what I believe and what flags I hang in my home.”
He added that his love of the flag stems from his heritage.
“For me and many Southerners, the flag celebrates my heritage and regional pride,” he wrote. “One of my ancestors, Benjamin Thomas, was a black Confederate cook, and I do not want to turn my back on his service to the South. So I hang the flag in honor of his hard work and dedication to South Carolina during the Civil War.”
Unfortunately, logic, reason, common sense, empathy and forgiveness appear to have no meaning anymore — particularly to members of the left — and so rather predictably, Zorn’s apology provoked thousands of people to harangue him on Twitter with hateful remarks, all on the dubious basis that he’s the hateful one.
Look (*Language warning):
Nawwwww FUCK YOU AND EVERYTHING YOU STAND FOR…..YOU KNEW WHAT YOU WERE DOING BEFORE YOU DID IT….
— Drap_Da_Great (@DraperNettles1) April 26, 2020
@DaleZornSenate you’re just a giant turd aren’t you?
I mean spiritually and ethically, this is not a statement on your physical appearance.
You doughy fuck.
— Brian Brinegar (@bbrinegar) April 26, 2020
@DaleZornSenate I don’t know u and I don’t care your either an idiot or a racist or both either way our tolerance for you is over fuck u and your mask pussy
— @Hydro8sixty (@Hydro8sixty) April 26, 2020
You are a piece of shit fuck your apology 🖕🏼@DaleZornSenate
— IG: @Vstylez (@Vstylez) April 26, 2020
Then WHY DID YOU WEAR THAT?! WHY DO YOU OWN IT?? Filthy #carpetbagger thinks he has something to say about life in Georgia?? Alabama?? Have you ever even lived south of the #MasonDixon line?? You’re a #LiarFromTheShire . You knew exactly what you were doing. #gotohell
— Lisa Wolf Chick (@LisaWink07) April 26, 2020
You’re not sorry. You’re sorry you got CAUGHT, racist scumbag. You ABSOLUTELY support EVERYTHING this racist pattern suggests.
— Sally Crimmin (@SallyCrimmin) April 26, 2020
From what I read it seems like you 1st tried to defend it then back peddled….so which one is it? Are you another typical racist cracker of little significance or not?
— Samuel Donald (@Sajedo) April 25, 2020
Love trumps hate, right? Make that make sense …
Some state legislators also responded to Zorn, albeit more sensibly, including Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist, the first African American to hold the office.
“As someone who has fought for civil rights his entire life … as the first black lieutenant governor in the history of Michigan, as the first black person to preside over the Michigan state Senate, it was appalling and disgusting to see a confederate flag chosen as the face mask by a sitting state senator,” he said on MSNBC this Saturday.
It’s not clear how Gilchrist feels about young black gentlemen such as Thomas.
Gilchrist also complained about seeing Confederate flags and “swastikas” during lockdown protests that occurred last week in the state capital.
“To see those confederate flags and swastikas in the Capitol last week shows you what this was really all about,” he said. “This was not about protesting orders to stay home and stay safe. This was about politics and partisanship. That was a Trump rally.”
The swastikas were designed to poke fun at Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who’s been compared to deceased Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler over her increasingly authoritarian lockdown measures.
— JenniBluStrp (@BluStrpJenni) April 17, 2020
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