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Chiaramonte’s Facebook racial commentary defended

Norwalk Board of Education member Jack Chiaramonte pauses during his remarks at Tuesday's BoE meeting.

Norwalk Board of Education member Jack Chiaramonte pauses during his remarks at Tuesday’s BoE meeting.

Update, 12:10 a.m. March 18, comments from Brenda Penn-Williams and Jack Chiaramonte. (This story was originally posted at 9:08 p.m. March 17.)

NORWALK, Conn. – Angry comments posted by Norwalk Board of Education member Jack Chiaramonte on his private Facebook page didn’t cross the line, Mayor Harry Rilling and Norwalk Branch NAACP President Darnell Crosland agree. But the responses were racist, Crosland said, and “very troubling,” according to Rilling.

Chiaramonte’s comments were intended to be “private,” in that they were only available to the 734 friends that were listed on Sunday. One of those “friends” sent the comments to NancyOnNorwalk, expressing disgust. While BoE Chairman Mike Lyons defended Chiaramonte as being against all racism, Crosland said Chiaramonte’s behavior is not befitting a public figure.

“I just read it and what’s sad is that although he himself didn’t totally cross the line, his friends did and he is a part of their racist comments,” Crosland wrote late Monday. “He should be ashamed of himself, as a public figure that is not good behavior.”

“Some of the comments I read were very troubling and disturbing,” Rilling said. “I think people should think twice before putting these things on social media because they aren’t private, they get shared.”

Chiaramonte did not respond to requests for comment.

This comes as the charges levied by BoE member Shirley Mosby against BoE Chairman Mike Lyons alleging disparate treatment and racial discrimination continue to fester in the background of BoE business. Norwalk Republican Town Committee Chairman Pete Torrano recently posted an open letter to Rilling calling for action, but the matter is unresolved.

Chiaramonte’s response to Mosby’s accusations last summer was to call her, “the girl who cried black.”

At Tuesday night’s BOE meeting, NAACP First Vice President Brenda Penn Williams addressed the matter.

“As a grandparent, a grandmother of elementary school children, I am appalled and quite frankly disgusted to read the racist rhetoric that BoE member Jack Chiaramonte engaged in on his Facebook page,” Penn Williams said. “This is not the first controversy regarding racism. Remember when he referred to the BoE member Shirley Mosby ‘the girl who cried black’? He should be removed from the Board because obviously his views doesn’t represent the makeup of this city. Shame on you Jack Chiaramonte for living in the Jack Crow era, oops I mean the Jim Crow.”

On Sunday afternoon, Chiaramonte posted a link to a disturbing video from Indianapolis, showing what appeared to be a white woman and child being pursued through a park by a group of black teenagers. A black female teenager jumped the woman, punched her, pulled her hair and kicked her, let her walk away, then jumped her again before taking down the child.

A screen capture taken Monday by NancyOnNorwalk.

A screen capture taken Monday by NancyOnNorwalk.

The post was shared was from Richard Ampleford III, who lives in the United Kingdom. Ampeford’s comment was, “Woman and child attacked by absolute savages for walking in a black neighborhood.” Chiaramonte’s post said, “Where’s Sharpton? Where’s the race fueling media? Where’s our idiot President or that dimwit Eric Holder? Black racist pull this crap and no one says anything? Not anymore. The stank perp’s name and info is posted. I called the Indianapolis Police Dept. and as soon as I mention a video I saw on Face Book, they already said they are investigating it. I hope the media picks this up and shoves in Obama, Holder and Shatptons faces and ask these racist scum why they don’t have anything to say”

The Facebook post was removed Monday afternoon.

Responses from Chiaramonte’s “friends” ranged from “Put these animals back in the jungle,” “another useless form of life” and “What an animal! Scum! Ignorant! Welfare scum I am sure!”

The first respondent suggested sending the video to the White House. Chiaramonte responded, “It seems the White House’s job these days is to defend black racist thugs only!”

Another person suggested sending it to Sharpton. Chiaramonte replied, “Don’t hold your breath waiting from that racist scum baiting piece of turd, lying sack of sh– animal turd pr— waste of life a-hole sh–head sorry excuse thief bastard! Did I cover everything ?”

As responses continued, Chiaramonte wrote, “The Indianapolis Police said they are investigating it. I hope the annihilate this bitch.”

“Why none of the people present have defended that girl and that child?” a woman replied.

“Because they are racist pigs too! Inhuman scum!” Chiaramonte shot back.

It turns out that both the “woman” being attacked and the girl attacking her are 14 years old, according to news reports. The child is the victim’s 5-year-old brother.

The attacker has been arrested in connection to fights in a mall, according to WTHR.com.  The girls go to separate high schools, according to a statement from Indianapolis Public Schools as published on WHTR. The victim filed a bullying report last month against students from the other high school, WTHR reports.

A Tuesday Jack Chiaramonte Facebook post, visible to the public.

A Tuesday Jack Chiaramonte Facebook post, visible to the public.

Chiaramonte’s 734 friends included Common Council members, Republican state representatives, commission and board members, Democratic Party members, the mayor, an employee of the mayor’s office, Drew Todd, Lisa Thomson, Town Clerk Rick McQuaid, BoE members Heidi Keyes, Mike Barbis and Artie Kassimiss and Republican Town Committee members. None of them replied to the post. Rilling said he hadn’t seen it when he got the inquiry, and it had been removed when he went looking for it.

Crosland was not a friend. NancyOnNorwalk sent him screen captures to get his reaction.

“Although Jack didn’t say black, his tone towards the president and Al Sharpton was clearly supportive of the others who did clearly base their comments in race,” Crosland said Tuesday. “Nonetheless, regardless of whether he comes out and says he hates President Obama and Rev. Al Sharpton because they are black, he is clearly involved in a hateful and utterly disrespectful conversation.  As a member of our Board of Education, key word ‘education’, he should be ashamed of himself, and all of our top officials who stand by and allow him to continue to act this way should be also. Based on his demonstrated behavior here and in other forums, you would be a fool to doubt that there is merit to Mosby’s claims of racism at the hands of this fella.”

Crosland said he had one piece of advice for Chiaramonte: “He should remember before speaking, ‘It’s better to say nothing and be thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt.’”

Democratic Town Committee Chairman Ed Camacho hadn’t seen the post. “All I can say is, we live in a representative democracy, and, sadly, Jack’s sentiments appear to be shared by many,” he wrote.

Lyons had not seen the Facebook posts either. He called the video “quite disturbing.”

“Jack, in his inimitable style, apparently objects to what he perceives to be the tendency of The White House to address white-on-black violence, while ignoring other minorities, as well black-on-white (or black-on-black) violence,” Lyons wrote. “Jack’s point appears to be that racism is deplorable whether practiced by Caucasians, Asians, Hispanics or African Americans. In this example, Jack is objecting to what he views as violent racism against whites. It’s hard to argue against that given the news reports.  Clearly Jack’s language is way over the top (I personally prefer never to use language like that when discussing public matters, as you know), it is important to consider that this is a posting on a private Facebook page, not on a public outlet like NON or The Hour.

“Here’s my view,” Lyons continued. “First, I respect Jack’s anger, but even on a private Facebook page you can make a legitimate point on this without using such intensely negative language.  Objecting to violence and objecting to racism certainly isn’t itself racist (I note that you correctly used the term ‘racial’ commentary rather than ‘racist’), but Jack can open himself up to that accusation when he uses extreme language, even in private.”

NoN asked Lyons if this were the smoking gun that could give credence to Mosby’s claims. Lyons said he didn’t see how it could objectively be seen that way. He wrote:

“Shirley’s formal complaint was to the NAACP and was apparently (we’re not completely sure, since it, like any evidence allegedly supporting it, has never been produced) directed against me.  How would private Facebook postings by Jack Chiaramonte constitute a “smoking gun” against the Board of Education in general or Mike Lyons in particular?  Does John Mosby’s arguably racist statement about Hispanics (http://www.nancyonnorwalk.com/2014/03/mosby-targets-briggs-diversity-lyons-honesty) constitute a ‘smoking gun’ that SHIRLEY Mosby is against Hispanics?  Absolutely not.

“As Board Chair, I have the responsibility to run Board meetings with decorum, pursuant to Roberts Rules. If people used objectionable language (e.g., Jack’s description of Sharpton, or Shirley’s threat to ‘pull out all of [my] white hair’) DURING a meeting and I didn’t enforce decorum, I’d be at fault.  But I have no control over what Jack or Shirley say OUTSIDE of a meeting.  I can deplore it, but I have no power to cancel either of their First Amendment rights to say whatever they like (though I can certainly express my disagreement with it).

“Quite frankly, none of this is helpful.  We need to tone down the rhetoric here and focus on what’s important.  For me and the Board of Education, that includes hiring a quality superintendent, filling a number of important administrative posts, continuing frugal management of our budget, advancing the Strategic Plan and its various elements, and continuing the general positive momentum of our school system for all children, minority and majority alike.”

Torrano spoke to Chiaramonte Tuesday. He wrote:

“I spoke with Jack about his recent Facebook post regarding the racist attack perpetrated on two Caucasian children by a group of minority students. Jack used strong language, inappropriate language, but not racially insensitive language to express his frustrations with national leaders Al Sharpton, Eric Holder and President Obama in their failure to publicly denounce this savage racist attack.

“While Jack posted to his private pages that only went out to his friends, I believe that the language he used was unacceptable for an elected official, and I told him so. I do not condone that type of expression, nor does the Republican Town Committee. Every Norwalk Citizen should be able to expect better discourse from all their elected officials.

“Jack understood our concerns and how it could further damage race relations by those who may read his words and add their own meaning to them.

“Ms. Mosby’s unsubstantiated and false accusations of racism by members of the Board of Education stem from very personal and local issues related to the Norwalk Public schools. Jack’s post to Facebook focused on the broader ideas of race relations on the national level. To call Jack’s Facebook post a ‘smoking gun’ in support of Mosby’s accusations is specious at best.”

Chiaramonte refused to comment before this story was published, but answered Penn Williams as one of the last segments of Tuesday’s BoE meeting, calling her remarks “erroneous.”

“Racism to me is just as ugly, doesn’t matter how you serve it. I had a discussion, as we mostly do, on our private Facebooks, that someone basically hacked and took some information,” Chiaramonte said.

His Facebook page, as described above, was not hacked.

“Well I may have used unflattering language that I wouldn’t use in an open forum like this, I did not slur any ethnic group,” Chiaramonte said. “I did have a problem with racial bias, not just in the city here but by this government. How some certain interracial actions that happen out there are broadcast and given to us 24/7, even lied about, over and over and ugly protests, while others that are just equally as gross because they are in the other way flipped are overlooked. So I am pretty much disgusted number one that people would go into my private discussions and try to use it in public because we’re all members here of the board, we have our own lives. We’re just like you. While we’re here in this room, we’re Board members. But to use such lowlife ways and try to use disgusting blackmail tactics. OK? That to me was disgusting.”

“I will challenge anybody, go right ahead. I can give you plenty of examples if you want. But I do not like seeing interracial biases, not by our government leaders nor by our town. I’ll stick by that.”

He declined to comment outside of the public forum.

Although Mosby was copied on Monday night’s reply from Crosland, she said she hadn’t seen the Facebook post. “I don’t want to get into it,” she said.

She was asked if she planned to address her grievance with the city, stemming from the June complaint. She walked away.


65 comments

Piberman March 17, 2015 at 9:27 pm

Here is a nice demonstration that for public figures (and the rest of us) comments made on Facebook are never really “private”. The old adage admonishing public figures to “always speak with others as if speaking before the Supreme Court” comes to mind. Will the Facebook comments of our public figures now be fruitful discovery for “inspired citizens” ? Can we trust our private e-mails will remain truly private ? Will we all have to resort to a “private server” for “convince” when participating in public life ?

WOW just WOW March 17, 2015 at 9:53 pm

Let us not forget about Chiaramonte and his comments in the past.
Shekels
and
The girl the cried black.
He should be removed from his position immediately .

Amanda March 17, 2015 at 9:58 pm

This is all just appalling. While I do not condone the RTCs response to Jacks actual irresponsible behavior online, I applaud them for at the very least acknowledging it. Something the DTC can take a page from. There’s no place for this in Norwalk. ESP in our schools. Appalling and disgusting. Way to go for the BOE yet again, Jack.

EveT March 17, 2015 at 10:14 pm

Chiaramonte is just one of a handful of BOE members who are an embarrassment to Norwalk. I wish BOE could broker a deal in which the troublemakers from both parties would all resign.
The video is extremely disturbing. Teenagers have been cruel and violent to each other since time immemorial for many reasons. There is a monstrous side to human nature and it can be brought out by any number of different triggers. Fox News knows that people get their jollies out of watching this kind of stuff, that’s why they broadcast it.
Does Chiaramonte know for a fact that the reason for the girl attacking the other girl was race? No, he doesn’t. That he even watches this kind of sensationalized “news” is a not very flattering reflection on his character.

Amanda March 17, 2015 at 10:21 pm

And for crying out loud, if you can’t resist posting controversial items on the facebook, esp while in office – DELETE YOUR PAGE.
The items he posted on The Hour were equally outrageous. This is childs play, with middle aged folk.

Amanda March 17, 2015 at 10:58 pm

However I should clarify asking Jack to resign also means we should ask for our democratic members resignations as well. Poison on both sides of the aisle.

Norewalk Lifer March 18, 2015 at 2:45 am

The truth is? this happens to a lot of people, a lot of people make unwise decisions to evoke a response from other in a social media situation, but the actual face 2 face is quite different.

Look, I don’t find videos of beatings “funny” either, and the disturbing thing is teen agers do. But teen agers have found this invigorating for decades, Leonard Bernstein wrote wonderful music to highlight this in “West Side Story”, but what is disturbing is the response from others; it’s an enablement of what could be considered a borderline racial issue. Even the four letter prose does not bother me, and while there are those who would go all “Cotton Mather” on the situation, put that aside, it has no bearing here.

So while everyone in this town gets on their high horse and looks down their nose at others, let me ask you all one thing:

Have you never, ever, said something that you cogitated at a later date and muttered to yourself “Boy that was a dumb thing to say”

If you haven’t done that, then ask yourself this question: “have I ever said anything of consequence?”

Regards
Norwalk Lifer

Lisa Bernstein March 18, 2015 at 5:44 am

Going over Jack Chiaramonte’s history of bizarre (uncouth? undignified? mean-spirited?) comments is a lot like looking at pictures of all the crazy hairstyles I had in the 80’s and 90’s. If we learn from the experience, the embarrassment is a price worth paying.

I haven’t had a perm or gone spikey in a long time. Too bad Norwalk’s Republicans aren’t such good students of history.

If you have over 700 Facebook “friends”, your comments aren’t private. This is a lesson Jack should have learned when he made sexist comments comparing women to Tropical Storm Irene four years ago on Facebook. He didn’t.

Neither he nor the GOP learned from his tirades when he was chairperson, from his shekel comment and his prolonged defense of it (before he finally apologized) or from his attempting to bully a school principal over outside recess.

Now, I know that GOP leader Pete Torrano wags a stern finger at Chiaramonte. As a gullible voter, I believe that Torrano really, really means what he says- I don’t need any action to know that Norwalk’s Republicans don’t approve of Chiaramonte’s comments. I’m sure Chiaramonte is very introspective when Torrano tweets “Bad boy” and swats Chiaramonte with a rolled up newspaper. The fact that the Republicans nominated him for re-election and nominated him to take on Sen. Duff was just a nice way of encouraging Jack to be a good boy– kind of like a little treat for coming when he was called by his Republican handlers.

I’m sure that after Torrano’s latest comment that he doesn’t approve of the way Jack made his insulting statements, Jack will stop insulting people, refrain from commenting on racial issues and keep off the proverbial couch when no responsible Republicans are home.

If not, we can always try to learn to enjoy the ignominy Jack will surely heap upon Norwalk in the future, just like he’s done in the past.

http://nypost.com/2011/05/05/conn-shekel-shellacking/

Yankee Clipper March 18, 2015 at 6:53 am

Lisa Bernstein …. “bully a school principal” …. are you kidding me? Jack is the only one to try and take on […] and you are trying to defend her?? PLEASE. Jack isn’t perfect but is a big fighter of injustice … which is exactly what is going on at West Rocks. […]

This post was edited to comply with our policy.

John Hamlin March 18, 2015 at 7:30 am

So it’s both the Republicans and the Democrats on the BOE and the Council who embarrass themselves and act like idiots. Is someone surprised and shocked?

sofaman March 18, 2015 at 8:28 am

1. Anyone who thinks Facebook is “private” causes me to think their intelligence should be severely questioned.

2. Obviously, the RTC is not going to do much about Chiaramonte: they have Mosby to point at and say “we’re no worse than you.”

3. This is where we get to when the bar for public office is set lower, and lower, and lower. Now we have TWO […] on the BOE and all we can do is listen to the political excuses of why we have to live with it.

4. Excluding some messy paper work that will need to be filled out, could anyone, anyone please explain how the BOE will suffer from the removal of Chiaramonte AND Mosby? Or, is the takeaway that there is no bottom for behavior of Norwalk public officials?

This post was edited to comply with our policy.

srb March 18, 2015 at 9:33 am

700+ friends and private? How did this guy ever become Chairman? He’s a flame thrower (as is Mosby). Perhaps its time for both of them to get in the Thunderdome and go at it, but please get Jack out. […]

This post was edited to comply with our policy.

Piberman March 18, 2015 at 9:41 am

Lets look at the bright side. City elected officials and Party leaders do have “standards”. They’re just different from the ones many of us espouse. Norwalk is a tolerant City. Elected officials can accuse others of discrimination, claim they are afraid of a Ferguson incident, behave ill-mannered at Council meetings and so on. Other officials refrain from criticizing such behaviors. That’s why they’re called “leaders”.

Of course, long time residents seem often appalled at such behaviors. They recall earlier times when elected officials were highly respected because of their admired public service. And elections encouraged the best of us to serve. But times change. There’s a reason why our property values have remained unchanged since 2003. And help is not on the way. Until we have public servants who behave like real public servants with courteous manners. The old adage of “new for old” seems appropriate here.

Marie Avila March 18, 2015 at 10:05 am

If he doesn’t know by now that elected officials have to be 20 times more careful than the rest of us . . . he’s dumber than he sounds and that’s pretty dumb. I used to patronize his store and he was pleasant, but never came across as someone who should have been on the BOE.
This is a disgrace – is there a recall process for BOE, or is it just called the next election day?
I’m no fan of Obama’s – voted for him in ’08 in spite of being a Republican (altho that was more not wanting Caribou Barbie to be a heartbeat from the Presidency) – but there are polite and appropriate and proper ways to make civil political comments and he seems to have missed that bus. EVERYONE on the BOE and holding any elected office in Norwalk should denounce this in terms as strong as the ones he used, but using words their grandchildren could hear.

Taxpayer Fatigue March 18, 2015 at 11:26 am

The notion that an elected official, who has over 700 Facebook friends, including most of the elected officials in Norwalk, has an expectation of privacy for his comments posted on Facebook is simply laughable.

Setting aside whether or not his comments were racist or not, his display of extreme anger and graphic profanity is unacceptable for someone who is in a leadership position in our schools.

And, just when we thought the journalistic standards of The Hour could go no lower, they printed the profanity in his statements word for word…

Oldtimer March 18, 2015 at 11:49 am

If this isn’t enough for the party to NOT nominate Jack for re-election, then we have a pretty good idea what their standards are.

There is no way to justify this man in any elected position, in my opinion.

Steve Colarossi March 18, 2015 at 1:02 pm

@SRB- I’m sure your reference […] was a shorthand reference to some of America’s ultra-conservative groups. However, it’s important to note that racism is an affront to true Christine doctrine. In fact, there are many of us who are both white and Evangelical Christians who are offended by racially insensitive commentary.

@ those asking about recalls- There is no provision in the Charter for recall of BoE members. The closest thing is that the members can vote to remove an officer, but that does not remove that person from the BoE.

And finally, to the silent “reformers” . . .

The fact that you’re silent certainly reveals the relative morality you practice where who you are dictates whether speech offensive to some is deemed spirited or slanderous, impassioned or insensitive, charismatic or culpable.

This post was edited to remove a reference that has been edited out of an earlier post.

Suzanne March 18, 2015 at 1:26 pm

While completing agreeing with the points of sofaman above, I am inclined to add one more based on Mr. Chiramonte’s comments: he is absolutely unconscious when it comes to making these comments as anything but justified and correct.

He does not get that his comments are offensive and INcorrect as a public figure, which the Abraham Lincoln quote, also above, amply illustrates. For example:

“I hope the media picks this up and shoves in Obama, Holder and Shatptons (sic) faces and ask these racist scum why they don’t have anything to say”

“Don’t hold your breath waiting from that racist scum baiting piece of turd, lying sack of sh– animal turd pr— waste of life a-hole sh–head sorry excuse thief bastard! Did I cover everything ?”

Apologists for these kind of statements like Mr. Lyons’ (where is his usually impeccable judgment?), and Mr. Torrano need to put their public service hats on.

This isn’t it.

As a member of the BOE, exactly what is valuable in these statements that represents good behavior, laudable behavior to our kids. Nothing. Absolutely nothing.

Until Mr. Chiramonte grows a brain and some sensitivity to the issue of racism, he should be removed from his office while not in service to the pubic and particularly the school system.

Mr. Ludlow March 18, 2015 at 2:24 pm

1. Who knew that Mr. Lyons’ many talents included the ability to translate “Chiaramonti-ese”?
2. Who can name anything Mr. Chiaramonte has accomplished in 8 years on the Board of Education?
3. Who can’t help but admire Mr. Chiaramonte? He seems to be an angry, torqued-off guy who the public has given a great forum to vent and blather. As long as he slams the city’s unions, he’ll have a fan club who will excuse his chronic foot-in-mouth disease.
4. Any chance the Dems will try to make Heidi Keyes and Mike Barbis explain why they have supported Chiaramonte (they contributed to his senate campaign)? Yeah, I didn’t think so either.

srb March 18, 2015 at 2:44 pm

Obama, Sharpton, Holder, DiBlasi and Comey (Republican FBI director appointed by President Obama) have something in common. They all maintain that many African Americans are improperly treated by police. They also state that black on black crime is a problem. Jack decided to only mention the first three, why?

LWitherspoon March 18, 2015 at 5:20 pm

I feel sorry for Jack Chiaramonte. Carrying around so much anger must be quite a burden. I am grateful for Mr. Chiaramonte’s efforts to reform Norwalk schools and demand more ECS funding from Hartford, but I believe it is past time for Mr. Chiaramonte to be replaced on the BoE. If he won’t resign, let’s hope the Norwalk GOP declines to renominate him.

Anonymous March 18, 2015 at 5:26 pm

Well…that does it. I’m moving (just add this to the list). I’ve enjoyed Norwalk tremendously in the ~10yrs we’ve been here. Elementary school experience has been great (Silvermine Elem is awesome), but hard to see elected officials who conduct themselves in this manner “leading” the city through the next 10yrs. I sincerely hope good people (Norwalk has a lot of them) decide to get involved in local politics/leadership to lead forward (this coming from a registered “independent” that doesn’t get to participate in all the party excitement). Mr. Lyon – I am a big admirer of yours, please don’t let yourself get dragged into defending this kind of conduct. People in leadership positions need to hold themselves to a higher standard.

Mrs. Ruby McPherson March 18, 2015 at 6:07 pm

I saw the video, so why bring the President and other people in it. It wrong all together, and yes we do as in all races have ignore people and that make you one of them. But I hope the girl was arrested for hitting the young child. Whether white, black or blue!!!!

WOW just WOW March 18, 2015 at 6:10 pm

Mr. Torrano
Your silence is deafening on this matter. You seem to be very vocal on these forums when it involves the democrat members of the BOE. Considering that it’s obvious that are reading this, here is your challenge. Will you as the head of the RTC do the right and honorable thing and publicly ask Chiaramonte resign??

YES or NO ????
WE WILL BE WAITING

Also as a side note Rilling continues to not take a stand on anything as he has not outright condemned these statement.

Oyster March 18, 2015 at 7:49 pm

Oh, my, my! This BOE, who is so proud of acting like a private company when it comes to cutting expenses and outsourcing union jobs, does not seem to want to hold public officials to the standards a private company maintains for its employees. Say what you like on your “private” facebook page, because that doesn’t reflect at all on the Board or the community you serve.

The fact that Mr. Chiaramonte equates schoolyard bullying that happens in every community in the country with the deaths of citizens at the hands of those in authority with a duty to protect shows how far off his radar is when it comes to racial injustice. Perhaps the attorney general and the president should have concerned themselves with the scuffle between democratic party leaders in front of city hall too? I’m sure they have time to respond to every violent incident in which the parties are of different races that happens to make the rounds on social media.

For those of you who have been so vocal in suggesting that the parties support “better candidates”, let’s hope you are evaluating Mr. Chiaramonte and those who are tacitly condoning this behavior by being silent or explaining it away.

And while everyone is busy considering charter reform to extend the terms for elected officials, you should seriously keep in mind that very often you don’t know everything about your elected officials, and that there is no provision for removal, except for voluntary resignation. Extending terms will mean living with a mistake for a very long time.

EastNorwalkChick March 18, 2015 at 7:52 pm

The Lyons and Torrano “Chiaramonti-ese” translation is trying to defend the indefensible….Jack and his FB friends just about said everything they could short of the “n” word…after reading this I’m beginning to wonder what Ms. Mosby has experienced may have a little bit of truth in it. It probably wasn’t as overt as this, more than likely it was in the subtle “dog whistle” terms and attitudes that are hard to document and pin point in time. And it usually comes from those who swear up and down that they are not racist….where there is smoke and in this case, there might be a fire smoldering behind the walls…we just don’t want to admit it.

Abe March 18, 2015 at 8:26 pm

Well, no smoking gun but certainly, allot of smoke.

Racial challenges and discussions aside, as the point that seems to allude, is the decorum, maturity and expected behaviors of people in positions of authority. The lack of respect that is being displayed and apparently accepted as the new norm and not just here locally but nationally, is sad and troubling.

Divide and conquer seems to be the favored strategy by some on the fringe of extreme positions. The rambling op/ed, posted today, appears to be an attempt to backpedal on some strong accusatory language and to try clarify some personal feelings that may have been expressed inappropriately, after feeling the intense heat that has been generated. It does appear that the GOP have a live loose cannon on their hands, what to do?

Well, first glance one of two things could possibly happen; 1) the National GOP picks up the story and replaces Joe the plumber with Mr Chairamonte.
Or, 2) Mr. Chairamonte retires from public service and is hired by GGP as public relations Vice President.

Far as the poster that stated they are moving, certainly have substantial just cause not to be associated with a town that is in dire need of stronger mental health infrastructure and outreach.

The sentiment expressed that there are great, well balanced individuals here in town that can serve the public well, with dignity, respect for office and individuals and have the maturity to make informed decisions for the good of all, is accurate.

However we seem to be stuck on a merry go round ground hog day that never ends and continues to embarrass the town not just locally but nationally. And some seemed to be proud of that really bad exposure, by regurgitating it over and over and over.

And the would be leaders that could lead us to a brighter future are hesitant to step forward and be associated with the, well, craziness that goes on in politics.

That is something we all need to think about, as the turnouts at the polls confirm, people are turned off by the childish behaviors our local and national elected representatives display.

Is it time for an upgrade in the ole wardrobe, out with the old, in with the new? Or, will we, again, wash, rinse and repeat the groundhog green genes?

The girl that cried black seems drowned out by the boy who cries white, really, really loudly. Don’t any of these people, that do all this whining in public, get the fact that we are all in this together? It’s not us vs them. Its US.

Maybe its time, no absolutely its high time to get with the program and climb aboard the train to a healthy prosperous future for all, not just you or me, or THEM.

Mark Chapman March 18, 2015 at 8:52 pm

@Dinakorm

Actually, a news website. A blog is, generally, a collection of opinions. Our opinion pieces are carefully marked as such, but the majority of our offerings are researched and edited news stories by longtime veteran journalists. But I would be interested in what point you are making.

Kristin Collins March 19, 2015 at 9:39 am

Are we living in the Soviet Union,China,North Korea? We have a Constitution that protects Mr Chiaramonte’s opinions. Simply stating his opinion of the hipocracy of equality and human rights does not justify being called unprofessional! Ask yourselves this….if Mr Chiaramonte was commenting on the horrors of white on black crime going unnoticed by the media and the White House, would you be so inclined to ask for his resignation? I don’t know this man, but I’m here to defend his inalienable rights under the Constitution to speak his mind as a free American. When that is gone, we are gone!

Norwalker35566 March 19, 2015 at 10:45 am

Disgraceful behavior! A teacher who spoke this way might be brought before the BOE and possibly be reprimanded or even fired. Chiarmonte would be sitting on the Board determining the fate of that teacher. Does that make any sense at all to anyone? Not to me!

Kim March 19, 2015 at 12:19 pm

LETS FACE IT!!!!
Jack is very passionate about protecting and standing up for the rights of the children of norwalk!!! He says what EVERYONE is thinking when they see a video like this … Did any one notice in this article that he actually DID SOMETHING about it and called the Indiana PD??? Not like most of us who saw it and hoped someone else did something!!!!!!i commend him and hope the people that attacked these kids are put in juvenile detention where they belong !!!!

Suzanne March 19, 2015 at 1:46 pm

Yes, people have the right to free speech.

But, as a member of a board who is an arbiter of what happens to our children, Mr. Chiramonte’s statements as described above and taken directly from his SOCIAL MEDIA page, is totally irresponsible and completely inappropriate to a school system that includes every race, creed and, yes, color.

Take a look: the invective on one statement is so horrible it is difficult to read. He is filled with anger and hatred against race if this diatribe, taken from his words, is any indication.

He needs to be off of the Board and out of public service on behalf of every Norwalk citizen and most especially on behalf of ALL people of color. It’s hard to believe anyone, Kim and Kristin, could defend the indefensible. (Unless this type of expression is what you want to teach your children as appropriate.)

It cannot be stated enough: he is a public person in public office. I would hope that Norwalk could do much, much better and that what an official says, matters.

WOW just WOW March 19, 2015 at 2:23 pm

Everyone please take notice that Mr Lyons and Mr Torrano both frequent comment posters on this site are missing. I guess they only like to comment when its about the Democrats.

Kim
You may want to think twice next time before stating that EVRERYONE thinks like Chiaramonte as I can tell you for a fact that I do not. Chiaramonte needs to go and go NOW.

Ken Werner March 19, 2015 at 2:24 pm

Nancy, your headline for this article, while not formally incorrect, does not reflect the weight of opinion against Mr. Chiaramonte’s Facebook post. It would have been more representative of the article’s content to say “Chiaramonte…Blasted” rather than “Chiaramonte…Defended.”

Mark Chapman March 19, 2015 at 2:32 pm

@WjW

I think perhaps that, as both were quoted extensively in the story, they may well be taking the “’nuff said’ approach, as Mr. Lyons has pretty much tried to do regarding the Shirley Mosby/Migdalia Rivas allegations of racism on the part of some BOE members.

Jessie March 19, 2015 at 2:46 pm

As someone who has only recently moved to Norwalk, this reinforces a quickly forming impression that this city is poorly managed and destined for a continued decline. What civilized, educated community would have such a person making decisions regarding the education of their children? If you argue the statements are not racist, it would still be impossible to argue that they reflect the level of soberness and seriousness that are reasonably expected from public officials. Shame!

Hobbes the Calvinist March 19, 2015 at 2:51 pm

We all have the RIGHT to our opinions.
We all should know which of those opinions should be LEFT unsaid.
Obviously Mr. Chiaramonte doesn’t know his RIGHT from his LEFT.

Bill March 19, 2015 at 10:20 pm

Watch the video. Black racism against whites needs to be talked about just as much as white on black racism, and some how this fact was twisted by Crosland.

Amazing

Suzanne March 20, 2015 at 8:48 am

Nope. Bill and Yankee, please read the following, Mr. Chiramonte’s words:

“Don’t hold your breath waiting from that racist scum baiting piece of turd, lying sack of sh– animal turd pr— waste of life a-hole sh–head sorry excuse thief bastard! Did I cover everything ?”

As responses continued, Chiaramonte wrote, “The Indianapolis Police said they are investigating it. I hope the (sic) annihilate this bitch.”

“Why none of the people present have defended that girl and that child?” a woman replied.

“Because they are racist pigs too! Inhuman scum!” Chiaramonte shot back.

Priceless. Exactly the way racism should be discussed. Calling out names that cannot even be printed, vile expressions of hatred for a race, demeaning and ugly. There are many ways to discuss all kinds of racism. The way Mr. Chiramonte did is inexcusable in a public forum.

Annihilating people does not further any cause – just rancor and more hatred. Mr. Chiramonnte’s comments do just that. He does not belong on the BOE or in public office with such poor judgment.

Joanna Cooper March 20, 2015 at 9:21 am

Oh Jack, they got your goose and there is really no excuse. I find your behavior deplorable but not as deplorable as Shirley Mosby’s and her spokesperson/attorney Crosland, the NAACP president. I can’t defend your language but I get your frustration. Your language while protected by the first amendment is language inappropriate “over the top” for a public official especially one that represents our children. It is naive to think there is privacy on Facebook and that all of your FB friends are really friends. Mike Lyons put it well, “none of this is helpful”. Don’t fuel the fire. Public officials will always be held to higher standards even in “private”.

I don’t necessarily agree with many here that you are a racist but I understand why you may have lead them to think so. I think it is clear that what gets your goat is the double standard of racial bias in the media. Particularly, what’s happened with our own BoE and the unfounded unproven discrimination claims lodged by Mosby and her fellow members of the NAACP. I agree with you on that matter. It does exist and now ironically you are experiencing that double standard. This is not a smoking gun. Anyone who knows you knows you are a “colorful character” and this time too off color. A mouth full of soap is suggested.

Isn’t it curious how it was Brenda Penn-Williams, first vice president of the Norwalk NAACP who brought this matter to the BoE and the media’s attention? Then the same day she announces that she is considering a run for the BoE? Is it just a coincidence?

Syd Morgan March 20, 2015 at 5:42 pm

Nancy, was Tuesday a slow news day? Publishing the contents of someone’s private Facebook page is not news. It’s an invasion of privacy, no matter how many friends that person has privately chosen to have. And, it is petty gossip.

Be careful citizens of Norwalk, especially if you want to run for public office. It seems Nancy will get a “news story” wherever she can. Your “private Facebook account” (in Nancy’s own words) is no longer safe. Private conversations you may have with a friend, colleague, or family member in a restaurant, hallway, office, are not safe. Nancy’s eavesdropped before, hasn’t she? Wasn’t there an issue with her reporting on something she overheard when she worked for a newspaper? Werent the police involved? Be careful what you put in your trash and guard your mailboxes. News stories may be found anywhere, especially if those looking have no integrity.

Does it bother anyone else that Nancy on Nothing, I mean Norwalk published a post from, what she admits was, a private Facebook account, one that she did not have legal access? Does it bother anyone else that she first showed these private Facebook posts to several select public officials to, possibly, make her story more juicy? Does it bother anyone else that she published the actual private Facebook posts that included the names of other commenters, who are not public officials, and invaded their privacy as well? Does it bother anyone else that Nancy, without authorization by the owner of the account, scavenged through this private Facebook account to find out how many friends were linked to this private account? Or that she published this information including the names of some well known Norwalk citizens that you’d likely be interested in knowing? I doubt her source was named. Are you NOT bothered by this because you don’t care about the right to privacy, or free speech, or freedom of expression. You care more that it happened to someone you disagree with, or don’t like, or someone who is in a different political party than you, or is a different race than you? Is that it?

I care about my right to privacy, my right to free speech, my right to freedom of expression. I care about your rights and Mr. Chiaramonte’s too. When someone else’s rights to these things are violated, it weakens my rights. You or I could be next!

And to those of you who would ask me if this is what I want my children to be taught, my answer is this. I want my children to be taught that they have the right to free speech, they have the right to privacy, they have the right to freedom of expression whether others agree with them or not. I also want to teach them that even if they don’t agree with what is said or expressed, or they are offended by what is said or expressed, they should defend someone else’s right to say or express it.

Sadly, because of this “news story” my right to privacy has been weakened. My right to free speech has been weakened. So have yours. To me, this story is a sad attempt to suppress the free speech of those with whom this news site and it’s supporters do not agree, politically and philosophically, to bully them into being quiet. Good luck with that!

As for Mr. Chiaramonte, he is a good man who works to make wrongs right and he does this with strength and passion. For those of you who criticize him here, I ask you, what have you done to right wrongs? I wonder how many millions viewed that video and how many called the police to report it. Mr. Chiaramonte did. What have you done, anything other than criticize those who do? Probably not!

Editor’s note: Normally, with so many violations of our comment policy – including ascribing motives to people, making incorrect statements represented as facts, character assassination by innuendo, etc. – we would not allow this comment, but then we would be accused of refusing dissent, or some such foolishness.

1. Any elementary school kid knows by now you don’t put something online if you can’t live with it becoming public. A Facebook Friend is not always a friend, it is a business associate, acquaintance, family member. One of those “friends” was offended enough to send us the part we published.
2. An issue with “eavesdropping” in the past. Yes. It was heavily reported on. It was doggedly pursued by then-Mayor Moccia. Nancy refused to sign a fantasy-filled statement they tried to bully her into signing, so they continued to push it, at a cost of thousands of taxpayer dollars. An arrest warrant was written by detectives and tossed by the state’s attorney because there was no case. An accidental recording, a preliminary decision to write a story followed by contacting the mayor, who objected and made legal threats. The Daily Voice hit the brakes, talked about getting legal advice, sat on it for a few weeks then said “no story.” The legal case was pushed anyway, but was tossed.
3. No one picks through trash (at least at this address). But if your trash collecter sends us letter he found with information the voters and taxpayers should know, yeah, there might be story with followup reporting.
4. Legal access? What has not been written until now is that Nancy was among those 700-plus friends. A lot of city officials on both sides of the aisle were. No “scavenging” needed to see how many friends someone has. And, yes, Nancy had been troubled by some of the things she saw on the page, but felt it would not be ethical to take advantage on having been “Friended” by Mr. Chiaramonte. When someone else sent us the information, it became a different story.
5. Nancy and Mr. Chiaramonte have always had a friendly relationship. But, as I tell people if it seems we are having a cordial relationship, if something comes up that the public needs to know, we have to write it. No one was out to “get someone they did not like or because of politics.
6. Suppress free speech? No. The story was done to let the taxpayers in on who Mr. Chiaramonte is. As someone in a position of power over the school system, someone’s whose personal beliefs have an impact on his daily decisions (as do everyone’s), someone who may again be on the ballot, his words and thoughts deserve scrutiny. The public’s right to know who they are voting for is of primary importance. Mr. Chiaramonte is free to say whatever he wants wherever he wants, but words and actions have consequences.

The issue here is not whether a BoE member’s words should have remained hidden, it is whether the voting public deserves as full a picture as possible about the people who are governing their lives and spending their money. We do not make recommendations on what the decision should be. We provide the information. Let the public decide.

Suzanne March 20, 2015 at 10:05 pm

Thank you for the follow-up to Syd Morgan. There are apologists for every aspect of this sorry episode.

I would ask this: if one public official writing such heinous comments on a Social Network page can “get away” with this, does this mean all public officials can?

Unless Mr. Chiramonte resigns or is asked to, nothing will compensate for these truly racist statements. That he has visited them upon all of the Norwalk residents, including children, is very, very sad.

Whatever his service in the past, this lack of judgment by Mr. Chiramonte shows a severe deficit of mutual respect for everyone. Those who are in the positions to do so, should pressure Mr. Chiramonte to tender his resignation immediately.

Mark Chapman March 20, 2015 at 10:30 pm

@Suzanne

Those in his district who find Mr. Chiaramonte’s words and attitudes offensive will have the chance to make their feelings known if he is again on the ballot in November. Those in his district who support Mr. Chiaramonte will have that same opportunity. Our purpose, as most people should be aware by now, is to bring the voters as much information as possible so they can make informed decisions.

Syd Morgan March 20, 2015 at 10:40 pm

Did I strike a nerve Nancy? Thank you for clarify many of the points I made as being true, such as the eavesdropping incident. Since we are critiquing here, your response to my reply violates your own policy by making the assumption about me that I would accuse you of “refusing dissent, or some such foolishness.” But I’m not offended, don’t worry. One question though Nancy. If you are so concerned with reporting on the character of Norwalk’s public officials and showing the citizens of Norwalk the truth about who they are voting for, why haven’t you done a story on The Facebook page Mr. Chiaramonte created in support of the Norwalk police department? I believe you’re a member of that page too, aren’t you? Do you only cover that which sheds a negative light? And, why when, as you reported, Ms. Penn Williams made racial reference to Jim Crow as “Jack Crow,” why wasn’t that your lead story? I’m just a citizen who wants to be informed.

Nancy Chapman March 21, 2015 at 2:22 am

@Taxpayer Fatigue
Interesting you mention the journalistic integrity of The Hour. Not only did they print the swear words but they posted a screen capture I took (obviously they were forwarded), which included the names of the non-public people leaving comments. I did not include the screen captures with my story because I thought that would be unfair to the people who are not in city government and could legitimately expect that their words would not hit the big time. IMO, the person who wrote, “Put these animals back in the jungle” is probably not a happy camper. Didn’t come from NoN.

Nancy Chapman March 21, 2015 at 2:47 am

@ Syd.
Funny you direct your reply to “editor” to me. I am not the editor, I am the reporter.
Brenda Penn-Williams’ comment is at the end of the story because the story was written before the BoE meeting and posted while I was there, when it became obvious that the competition had become aware of it, due to Mr. Chiaramonte’s comments. Also, your version of the way the story should be written shows a bias. It’s not about Ms. Penn-Williams, it’s about Mr. Chiaramonte.
I have not written about Mr. Chiaramonte’s Facebook page regarding police officers for several reasons. 1., It’s not relevant to the issues, either in relation to Mr. Chiaramonte’s status as a BoE member or to issues the city is focused on. The city is not in an uproar over Ferguson. We don’t cover cops here. There are only so many hours of the day; we have chosen a focus and I am sticking with it. (That being said, we have written stories addressing the concerns about militarizing police or about over policing, which we feel is appropriate in relation to the national issue.) 2. I’m disappointed in Mr. Chiaramonte’s Facebook page. It’s not so much about being a friend of the Norwalk Police Department as much as it is about Mr. Chiaramonte’s political outlook. 3. No one has suggested it. Again, I was on Mr. Chiaramonte’s friends list and had seen posts but we didn’t do a story until one of the other 734 people expressed outrage. But, now that you have suggested that it’s worth a story, I’m thinking about it.

Suzanne March 21, 2015 at 8:11 am

@Mark Chapman, Does this mean the ONLY way a person holding this position can be removed? What if it were another issue like health problems or a family emergency? I can’t believe that this man could not, out of consciousness for the offensiveness of his words, could not resign. (But then, I am not privy to all of the mechanics of Norwalk politics.)

Joanna Cooper March 21, 2015 at 9:13 am

Touché Syd Morgan
I am bothered. […] The story was biased in that there is a double standard going on here. You gave an example “Jack Crow” comment. It wasn’t garbage picking but it stretched limits on privacy issues and that will certainly discourage anyone from running for politics. […] Jack represents a threat because Jack calls them out on their bullying tactics. I hate Jack’s foul mouth and do find him a bit bullying. However, I do appreciate he is one of the few strong enough to stand up against the injustice that they have perpetrated on our school district and continue to get away with. They came with there unfounded claims and have looked for a smoking gun ever since. This isn’t it.

This post was edited to comply with our policy about ascribing motives to people.

Syd Morgan March 21, 2015 at 9:24 am

Actually Nancy, all of my questions were intentionally directed at you, the reporter. I apologize to the editor for thanking you instead for clarifying that I was accurate on several points including the eavesdropping incident. Because your operation is so small, I thought editor and reporter were one and the same. Also since in the editor note it switches from Nancy to, “but as I tell people, if it seems we are having a cordial relationship…” The use of the I and we pronouns confused me.

To be clear, I did not suggest changing the story about Mr. Chiaramonte to it focusing on Ms. Penn William in the article as you said would be showing my ” bias.” I asked where the story about her was. Had Mr. Chiaramonte made a racial comment like that, I would expect it to be a front page, above the fold headline, and an entirely separate story.

I do need some clarification from you regarding your above comment directed at me, because I am confused about some of what you said. First, with regard to the question I asked about you not reporting on Mr. Chiaramonte’s Facebook page in support of the Norwalk police. You state it’s not relevant to the issues. His private Facebook page IS relevant to the issues and to the citizens of Norwalk but a page he dedicates specifically to their police department is not relevant to the issues and to the citizens? Is this actually what you mean?

Second, you say in your comment, “We don’t cover cops here.” Cops? You say you’re sticking to the focus you’ve chosen. Okay, except then you say how you actually do cover the police. You state that you’ve written stories addressing concerns about militarizing police and about over policing. Uh, okay, you don’t, but you do. Based on what you say that you do cover, it looks to me as if you cover the police, or in your words, “cops,” when the issue is a negative one?

At the end of your comment directed at me you state, “now that you have suggested it’s worth a story, I’m thinking about it.” Wow, yesterday, I was a first time commenter, today I’m influencing the news. Who else influences you to do stories Nancy?

Karl March 21, 2015 at 9:24 am

Jack Chiaramonte was right on the money with his comments.People have a right to speak their mind, or is it only the PC police approve it !!!

Bill March 21, 2015 at 3:02 pm

Jack, you got my vote. Keep up the good work and speaking the truth. Don’t let the haters bring you down!!!

Norwalker35566 March 21, 2015 at 3:49 pm

Nancy, a far more interesting story, in my opinion has surfaced and needs to be covered. It seems that the NEF is refusing to let the public know (in a public manner) how the GE Capital funds earmarked for the Norwalk Public Schools were used. While Jack’s comments on his FaceBook page deserve space, I think the NEF potentially is a much bigger story. Some believe Rivera’s company profited and, perhaps, so did he. If true, consultants were paid very large fees. Time to move on?

Nancy Chapman March 21, 2015 at 5:00 pm

@Syd

We do not cover the police. I do not go to police briefings, I do not report on crime and I usually don’t go to the courthouse, unless there is a matter concerning a public official (the recent trial of Councilman Travis Simms is the only instance so far) or public concern (the prosecution of former Assistant Town Clerk Debbie Troy). I don’t write human interest stories about police, either.

The stories about militarization and the feelings people have toward police are in a gray area, as they involve decisions made by city leaders. The approach the police department makes toward the community is decided upon at a high level. Obviously the amount of tax dollars going to the police department, the overtime or the money spent on equipment, is something that falls into our area of coverage.
Another gray area would be a lawsuit.

Regarding a story about Mr. Chiaramonte’s FB page, this isn’t the first time we’ve taken a suggestion from a commenter. I wouldn’t be doing it if not for the story this week about Mr. Chiaramonte on FB. He has no jurisdiction over the police department and it isn’t a topic for a watchdog news site, but I’ve come to believe that it does have some relevance to the attitudes being expressed on the BoE.

Any further question should be emailed to [email protected].

Syd Morgan March 21, 2015 at 6:12 pm

All of the questions I had, or have regarding your stories or your, or your editor’s replies to my comments will be submitted here as comments, not to someone’s email account. If I need clarification, I’m sure other readers do to. If you choose to censor my legitimate questions, I have no control of what you do on your site.

Editor’s note: The comment policy applies to comments to or about the the people who report and edit the site, and the site itself. As such, comments intended to harass, bully, threaten, or spread false information — or commit character assassination by innuendo will not be allowed. Read the policy. Your questions have been answered. We are not here to debate readers on every point of every story.

Given that The Hour has reported this story, ran more screen captures than we did and quoted Darnell Crosland and Brenda Penn-Williams, but we have not seen your concerns about that newspaper’s coverage, we can only take your posts as a personal attack That’s also against our policy.

Suzanne March 21, 2015 at 11:01 pm

“Another person suggested sending it to Sharpton. Chiaramonte replied, “Don’t hold your breath waiting from that racist scum baiting piece of turd, lying sack of sh– animal turd pr— waste of life a-hole sh–head sorry excuse thief bastard! Did I cover everything ?” Jack Chiramonte

So for all those who say, “Stay Strong” and the commenters against him who “don’t understand the good work he has done for this town”, read the above and tell me this is an appropriate comment in ANY forum in reference to school children in the City of Norwalk. Yeah. I thought so.

Lonnie March 22, 2015 at 4:43 am

Lets just attack the messenger if the message is, well, indefensible, right?

May have had some success in the past but its not a fool proof tactic; distracting, from the issue/message, by attacking the messenger. Mr. Snowden, as just one recent high profile example.

Not gonna work this time guys. Jack must ride off into the sunset for the good of our community, as a whole.

Jack has repeatedly been discretely nudged to tone it down. These repeated divisive offensive public outbursts, by an individual, in the public lime light, as a city official, so lacking in any social etiquette or communication skills is not representative of our community but in fact is an embarrassment, again and again. Enough is enough already.

His raging outburst, bullying employees at west rocks should have been the straw that broke the camels back. How many episodes of these types of inappropriate behaviors have we endured since than? Enough is enough.

If he cant keep his vocal communication skills under some, even moderate control and focus on the tasks he is assigned to accomplish, like hire the next Super, than maybe the chair has some other powers under Roberts that can corral the wild bull until elections.

Jack we love you and appreciate your service and passion to reform education. But this isn’t ENY or Queens, where perhaps folks also speak in that fashion. Round here we expect our elected officials to use proper communication skills, behave in a fashion that represents the respect the office seat represents.

Yes you can put your foot in your mouth many times as you like, post videos of Pinocchio’s and rant and troll till it relieves whatever it is that disturbs the sleep. But Jack, DONT do it as my elected representative, your embarrassing me, as I voted for you, twice. Wait till your out of office and no longer represent my children’s best interests. Please.

Norewalk Lifer March 22, 2015 at 7:12 am

Okay, so this man is so smart, he knows the motivation of everyone, I suppose he also knows the intellectual level of every student, and I suppose he knows the motivation of everyone here who is responding to this story, I mean we are all “judgmental hypocrites” if we don’t like him. Don’t like him? don’t know him, but I know the words. And it’s as easy as Aesop’s, the grapes are too sour, so why reach for them? I could care less who this man wakes up thinking about, not even on the list. I’ve frequented his silver store and found him cordial, so why the juvenile behavior on a social media page? what in the hell did this town ever do to him to deserve this kind of “in your face” single faceted, salutation of stentorian admonishment?

Those words are un-necessary, and if this man had any sense at all, he wouldn’t make a permanent record of words like this, I guess it’s okay to say stuff like this when you are self employed, because there are limited consequences, but from my earlier post, I’ve thought about this, people make stupid comments, really dumb comments, there’s plenty of them here. I really was trying to give this cat a pass, as we are all human after all. Usually in your very personal life, make a dumb comment, and you end up apologizing for it; why? here’s the pearl “because you respect those you spoke to in such a manner”.

We all get it; he doesn’t like this president, fine, but don’t attribute hysterical national politics to individuals on a personal level, when you do, you become no better than those you profess to hate, as it’s this behavior that makes you hate them in the first place. And anyone who refutes this, and find a frayed thread in their own beliefs to tie to this man’s comments, all I can say is, “Keep weaving the tale”.

But when faced with the consequences of those comments, and still to hold to some “brave heart, clint eastwood, never let em hear you apologize” fantasy, it’s time to move on. This man should not be on the board, he’s too busy thinking of new and creative epithets to hurl at those who don’t agree with him.

By the way? he should lock his face book page, I’ve seen some real nonsense there. Like the Obama “Anti-Christ” theory, from some stupid TV show. Sure I get my facts from HBO. Doesn’t everyone? Was it a joke? probably, but to be honest? it ain’t funny. What’s funny is the people in this town who are polishing this turd story and trying to make it out to be pate.

Of course, the page is cleaned up now, naturally it is. Because the sincerest form of apology is removing any thought, statement, or “truth in jest” comment you can before it gets discovered. So you see? the convictions are as flimsy as the excuses.

In other words, as Machiavelli once stated, “there are those who stole and are sorry they stole, and then there are those who are very, very, sorry they are going to jail”.

By the way Brenda Penn Williams should keep her mouth shut also. And mind her own business.

Regards
Norwalk Lifer

Editor’s note: Ms. Penn-Williams is first vice president of the NAACP, and, as head of the legal redress committee, brought forward the racism complaint about alleged racism on the Board of Education last summer.

Are you kidding? March 22, 2015 at 1:16 pm

OMG!! Many of these posts from several are clearly racist. How can ANYONE defend him, then try to flip the blame on the minorities, that in itself is racist, it’s exactly how racists do things. […] (Several) posts are really bad for Norwalk, their comments should be sent to all state and national news outlets so everyone can see some attitudes in Norwalk regarding race relations in our country. They have a right to their opinions and freedom of speech and all that, but DAMN racism is alive and well in Norwalk. In particular Lonnie mentions attacking the messenger; […] Ms. Mosby(BOE)and Andre Williams (regarding the fire chief) have been messengers that have been constantly attacked, but Chiarmonte does it and he’s defended, double standard you think?
This clearly proves to anyone with half a brain that we have many closet racists in OUR town, having it both ways when it suits them. By the Republicans not speaking up as they should also speaks volumes, because they’ve been in charge most of the past 25 years.
@ Jessie, I believe you’re the smartest person commenting, by getting the hell out of here with haste!!!!

This post was edited to comply with our comment policy.

Norewalk Lifer March 22, 2015 at 8:38 pm

Dear Editor:

I am speaking of the Jack Crow, Oops, Jim Crow slip, juvenile, sub standard, and like I said, you want the high ground? don’t wallow in the mud with the rest of the little piggies.

Regards
Norwalk Lifer

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