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Summerland, B.C., mayor claims to have received threats over Confederate flag incident

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Summerland, B.C., mayor claims to have received threats over Confederate flag incident
Summerland, B.C., mayor claims to have received threats over Confederate flag incident – Jul 21, 2020

Summerland Mayor Toni Boot said she has received ‘racially-charged’ threats following a confrontation with a business owner over the sale of Confederate flag bandanas.

Boot says she has received many emails about the incident, mostly supportive but some extremely negative.

One email she says she received said, “You actually thought you had the right to enter a store owner’s business and demand them to remove a product that in your opinion is racist? I would have dragged you out by your hair.”

Another more positive email that she shared said, “I am cheering for you and admire your strength, heart and integrity in dealing with the recent racial incident in Summerland.”

Boot said she filed a complaint with the RCMP regarding the threatening emails.

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Allan Carter, who owns the local dollar store that was selling the Confederate flag bandanas, said he still wants an apology from the mayor.

Carter said Boot asked to buy the rest of the bandanas to remove them from the shelves.

He gave them to her for free, as he had already removed them.

Boot then left the business and destroyed the bandanas in front of the store.

Carter said he asked Boot to not destroy the flags in front of his store and that’s when he said she replied with, “I am the mayor, I can do whatever I want.”

Boot refutes the claim that she said that: “My recollection is I said no such thing.”

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Carter wrote a formal letter to the mayor and council of Summerland, asking for a public apology.

“I am requesting a public apology from the mayor for bullying my staff and her very inappropriate actions at my store,” wrote Carter in the letter.

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“She successfully managed to harass and bully my staff, embarrass me, my business, our community and herself.”

Carter is claiming in his letter that the incident is not about racism targeting the mayor.

“To Toni, this issue is about your lack of respect, professional conduct, abuse of power, bullying and poor judgement (sic) towards a local business,” wrote Carter.

Carter said he’s filed a complaint with the RCMP against the mayor.

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Boot told Global News she will not apologize for the incident.

“I will fall on my sword,” said Boot.

The confrontation stems from an incident in which a man waved a Confederate bandana out of a truck window at a parade.

The parade was in support of the Lehkis, a Summerland family who was recently the target of a hate crime.

The man has since apologized and said he purchased the bandana at Carter’s dollar store. 

Anti-Black racism protests are ongoing around the world, after George Floyd was killed by police in Minneapolis on May 25, 2020.

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Click to play video: 'Summerland business demands apology from mayor'
Summerland business demands apology from mayor

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