Northern Virginia

Loudoun County Treasurer Apologizes for Racially Insensitive Social Media Post

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Loudoun County's treasurer issued an apology after making an insensitive post on Facebook following the Quaker Oats announcement to remove Aunt Jemima from their products because of the ties to "racial stereotypes."

Roger Zurn wrote "wondering if Aunt Jemima will change to Uncle Tom’s."

Friends told him to take down the post, but the damage had already been done.

"When you make a mistake as I did, you need to come clean, admit it and apologize without reservation," Zurn said. "I would like to do that here and right now."

The post has been deleted and Zurn is now apologizing, but other board members and the NAACP are calling for his resignation.

"What was he thinking? This is definitely inappropriate. It’s insensitive. It's racist," said Loudoun County Supervisor Koran Saines.

While issuing his apology, Zurn said he would not resign. He said he instead plans to meet with the NAACP and other groups.

"Sometimes you need to be humbled in order to grow. That’s the case right here, right now," Zurn said.

One of Zurn's supporters and friends said she sees his mistake as an opportunity to grow.

"If we are going to get through this moment as a country, we’re going to have to talk when it's hard, when it's uncomfortable, when it's not easy and call people out when they do what's not right," said Sophia Nelson.

Saines said he is waiting to see if Zurn follows through. The Loudoun County chapter of the NAACP confirmed Zurn set a meeting with them for Wednesday.

"As he said in his comments, actions speak louder than words. I need to see some actions," said Saines.

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