This video is about five minutes long.
The county council’s vice president took issue Tuesday with comments the council president made Sunday night on a podcast discussion about the Confederate statue on the courthouse grounds.
“If there’s opportunities where the president of the council is taking care of remarks and stuff on a radio station and doing comments, I’d really appreciate that you give us, some of the council, the respect when there’s a very, very important day next Tuesday that means a lot to all of us when it comes to Frederick Douglass and you sorta bashed us a little bit.
“And I really didn’t appreciate that so I’d really, really would like you to, if you have something to say to us, just call me okay and voice your flustration,” Callahan said as his voice thickened with emotion. “I know you did it in flustration, but it was very, very disrespectful to us.”
Pack said he appreciated Callahan’s comments, which were directed at Pack’s remarks about the private Sept. 1 unveiling of plaques at the Douglass Park on the Tuckahoe. The private ceremony will be followed by the opening of the park to the public.
“Of course we all know, Frederick Douglass was an abolitionist, he fought against slavery, I think he fought against everything that the Talbot Boys statue stands for,” Pack said Tuesday. “I guess you’re referring to my comments about that particular event.”
Speaking Sunday night on the “A Miner Detail” podcast episode discussing the Confederate statue, Pack noted that the three council members who voted against removal likely would make an appearance for the park unveiling, which will feature Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford and Douglass descendants.
“You’re going to have those same council members who voted against taking down that statue, right, they’re going to come up there September the first and pose for every picture around the lieutenant governor regarding the Frederick Douglass unveiling of those (plaques) in honor of, in honor, and get this, the second annual Underground Railroad Month as we kick it off here in Talbot County on Sept. 1,” Pack said Sunday.
“You’re going to have those same council members come up, throw their arms around the lieutenant governor at the park on the Tuckahoe. How disingenuous is that? You vote two weeks ago not to take down this statue that’s a symbol of slavery and racism but yet you’re going to run up there for a photo op on Sept. 1,” he said on the podcast.
Responding Tuesday to Callahan’s comments, Pack said the council needed to have a discussion about what members say versus what they do.
Earlier in the meeting, he noted, Dr. Fredia Wadley, the county’s health officer, had given a report on COVID-19. The county council subsequently passed an emergency declaration that did not include several measures requested by Dr. Wadley.
“You can’t bring the health officer here in front of us to give a report but at the same time pass an emergency declaration that tears out everything that the health officer asked us to do,” he said. “I’m speaking about what we’re saying and what we’re doing.
As the meeting was held, demonstrators gathered outside the council chambers to chant, bang drums and blow air horns in peaceful protest against the council vote.
During public comments at the end of the meeting, Henry Herr, a longtime proponent for the statue’s removal, was the only caller.
“I’m obviously a little upset about the vote that happened last week and there’s obviously a lot of vocal opposition going on tonight and obviously will continue,” Herr said. “I can’t say that I’m surprised (by the vote), but the fact that there was mention stated that a vote shouldn’t be taken on something like this because of COVID while members on this council are voting not to follow the health officer’s guidelines for COVID seems a little hypocritical.”
Herr also said Councilwoman Laura Price had falsely claimed that there were no private funds for the statue’s removal when he had offered to pay for its removal on multiple occasions. Others also have publicly pledged to donate for the removal costs.
“If you want to vote on something, please at least state the facts that you don’t want the statue to come down, not that it can’t be paid for by private citizens that have already come forward multiple times ….,” he said.
Letters to Editor
Anne Stalfort says
Does anyone have any ideas on how we can change the viotes of the 3 council members who voted against removal of the confederate monument?
Is there an organization advocating for the removal of the monument that one can join?
And a comment:
To the Easton Town Council:
You as a body, don’t have the legal responsibility for what is placed or removed from the Courthouse grounds. I get that. What I don’t get is how you as a group or as individuals, condone having a racist monument in your town. If you aren’t personally horrified that a statue that honors those who fought to keep slavery is in a place of honor in your town, at least consider the economic damage of keeping the Talbot Boys in our town. Speak up! If you are for the status quo – say so. We need to hear your voice.
Howard Freedlander says
I applaud Council President Pack’s comments and his understandable reaction to what he considers hypocrisy on Councilperson Callahan’s vote against removal of the objectionable Confederate monument on courthouse grounds.
While he views Pack’s comments as disrespectful, Callahan seems oblivious to the irony of supporting a symbol of hatred and oppression on public space, yet likely will join the celebration of the nation’s eloquently outspoken abolitionist and Talbot County native, Frederick Douglass.
Christine Murray says
It was entirely appropriate for Corey Pack to go on a podcast and speak his mind. That’s what podcasts are for. Chuck Callahan is offended by what Corey had to say and I’m offended by Callahan’s vote to leave the Talbot Boys statue standing on the Courthouse grounds. This issue is not going away. Please reconsider your vote along with Laura Price and Frank Divilio and have open discussions with the residents of Talbot County.
I’m glad Mr Callahan stood up to Corey Pack. Just because the 3 members voted to keep a 100 yr old statue that is a memorial to veterans, does not make them racists or ingenuous. Mr Pack himself voted to keep it just 5 short years ago. Is he saying that he has been ingenuous the last 5 years. For some reason, we have a society that is offended by EVERYTHING! We have also gained a BULLY culture. Who started this? Why now? Too much entitlement? I grew up my whole life here, we have never dealt with the likes of people pitting one another against the other like society is doing today. I grew up in a town where most everyone knew each other, went to school together, worked together, helped each other. We did not degrade someone for having another idea or choice. Just because the 3 council members voted to keep the statue (as Mr Pack did 5 yrs earlier) does not mean they don’t promote the Underground Railroad or Frederick Douglass, nor that they are being fake when they in the company of anyone involved in promoting it. Isn’t that being racists believing they are being ingenuous?
Also, with regards to the “peaceful protesters”, please tell me what is peaceful about air horns, bats, and beating on signs?
Mary Jean Cole says
Hello!??!! Mr. Pack also voted to keep The Talbot BOYS not only 5 years ago, but also just 2 (maybe 3) years ago….two times now in five years. HMMMMM……Wonder Why this sudden change? He also changed from being a registered Democrat to a Republican in order to fill the spot of the Republican Council member, Mr. Peter Carroll, who had to resign for personal reasons.
Mary Jean Cole
Barbara Perry says
This monument is not a monument to veterans (as one comment stated), it is a monument to traitors to the Union. Veterans are people who swore to defend the Constitution of the UNITED States of America. Since some people have offered to pay for the removal, that solves the funding problem. So take them up on it and vote again but this time remove the statue.
Linda Baker says
They are veterans! That was an historical war! They were not traitors, they were defending themselves and homes when the union came in.
Arlington Cemetery is on what used to be a plantation. It was also owned by General Robert E Lee. Should we move all of the slaves, union soldiers, etc off of that land?
Deirdre LaMotte says
All wars are “historical”. What the hell? When one takes arms up against
one’s country, he/she are committing treason. What do you think this is about? Some polished appraisal of the “Ol South??” General Lee committed treason and he lost. Many of his family supported the Union and were appalled at his decision to fight against his country.
There is no honor in being traitor, then or now. No honor what so ever.
Pamela R Getson says
This is not in any way accurate, albeit a regionally favorable, oft-repeated, POV. As I cited weeks earlier, these men did in fact commit treason; it was so named and assigned to their acts. BUT their luck was that Lincoln for some, and later Johnson for nearly all but Lee, PARDONED them for it. The pardon did not absolve the stain or the issue or re-brand them in any technically glorified new manner. Again, please read: https://sites.duke.edu/lawfire/2020/07/11/were-confederate-soldiers-tried-for-treason/
Here, a relevant excerpt which begins with Gen. Milley’s statement regarding Confederate-named, present day US forts. He wanted them renamed and his rationale was attributed to treason—of the time, well-documented, and regardless that it received a pardon:
“The Confederacy, the American Civil War, was fought, and it was an act of rebellion,” he said. “It was an act of treason, at the time, against the Union, against the Stars and Stripes, against the U.S. Constitution”…
This raises an obvious question: why then were few Confederate soldiers tried for treason? Like so many things associated with the Civil War, the reasons are complicated.
Our prior presidents meant well–in hopes of bringing all parties of our country back together again. But to conjecture: perhaps if they had allowed the Confederate combatants to ALL be formally convicted of treason, but stayed any additional punishment, future generations would never have persisted for all these decades hence, and apparently still to this day, providing folklore and rationalizations for simply treasonous actions.