Chesterton Tribune



Bob Allison resigns Town Council seat over Facebook comments

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Chesterton Town Council Member Bob Allison, D-3rd, resigned his seat on Sunday after posting reckless and insensitive comments to Facebook on Saturday about the peaceful protest in Hammond.

Allison texted his resignation, effective immediately, to a Chesterton Tribune reporter at 2:14 p.m. Sunday, seven minutes after Clerk-Treasurer Courtney Udvare released a statement from his colleagues on the Town Council urging him to resign.

The comments which Allison posted to Facebook, as protestors converged peacefully in Hammond to denounce police brutality and racism and in particular a police officer’s murder in Minneapolis of George Floyd: “Get the snowplows out!” followed by “Straight blade ‘em!”

Those comments provoked hundreds of shares and scores of outraged replies, and Allison subsequently apologized for them on Facebook: “I had a friend who was on his way to work in East Chicago who had been laid off for 6-7 weeks and was prohibited from getting to work. He has bills like anyone of us. He plows snow in the winter to make some extra money for his children and wife. He asked as he was sitting in traffic, should he use a ‘straight blade or curved?’ My response was ‘straight.’ And it was insensitive and unwarranted. He was in an SUV with no plow. Anyone who knows me knows I have devoted my entire adult life to public safety and care for EVERYONE. I would NEVER invoke or intentionally harm anyone. The comments were not serious in nature and in poor taste. They were meant as a joke to my friend and in no way serious. This is not a reflection on me as a Councilman, nor of the Town of Chesterton as a whole. Again, my apologies to anyone that was offended.”

This morning Allison texted an additional comment to the Chesterton Tribune: “I am in the process of resigning. The proper paperwork has to be submitted. I am truly sorry that my words were blown so far out of proportion that I’m being labeled a racist, a killer, and (have) received threats against me and my family. I want to thank the people who have privately and publicly thanked and supported me through this ordeal. Hundreds have asked me not to resign. Anyone that knows me knows I have devoted my life to serving and helping others. I pray for peace for our country. I pray for peace for our town, and I pray for the family of George. God teaches us the greatest gift given AND received is forgiveness. I pray each of you can find forgiveness in your hearts. Thank you to those who have. Blessings, Bob Allison.”

At 2:07 p.m. Sunday, Udvare released the following statement on behalf of Allison’s four colleagues on the Chesterton Town Council: “This past Saturday, Council Member Allison made inappropriate comments regarding the protests in the City of Hammond, Ind. The Chesterton Town Council does not share these opinions and unequivocally denounces them. The Town Council believes firmly in the right of peaceful demonstration and the right of redress of grievances. Mr. Allison’s comments do not reflect on the character or opinions of the Chesterton Town Council or the people of Chesterton. Although we have no authority to remove him from his office, we regretfully believe it to be in the best interests of the Town of Chesterton that Mr. Allison resign his position as a Council member.”

That statement was released above the names of Allison’s colleagues: President Sharon Darnell, D-4th; Jennifer Fisher, I-5th; Lloyd “Buck” Kittredge, R-2nd; and James Ton, R-1st.


Posted 6/1/2020





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