NEW LONDON, Conn. (CBS Hartford) – A mayor was compared to Adolf Hitler on a Facebook page and now wants it shut down indefinitely.
Mayor Daryl Justin Finizio criticized the Whale Tales Facebook page for allowing one of its writers to post a photo that depicts him as Hitler, The Day reported.
A friend alerted the mayor to the post on the page where the caption refers to him as “Adolph Fibnizio.”
An inappropriate content message from Facebook was sent to resident Kathleen Mitchell, administrator of the page. She removed the photo immediately and said it was only up for 30 minutes.
“I understand the intent of it. It compared Daryl’s oratory skills and skill at manipulating an audience (to Hitler’s),” Mitchell said about the posting to The Day. “He’s a dynamic speaker.”
Mitchell explained that the photo had nothing to do with Hitler’s actions and notes that she has Jewish relatives. She explained that only people who can post are a limited number of city employees and board members who are anonymous writers for Whale Tales making it difficult for her to know who created the post.
“Whale Tale is not intended to be socially offensive, but sometimes it happens anyway,” a message posted by Whale Tales stated.”And we do enjoy roasting the Mayor because he deserves it, but not at the expense of our followers. We also take very seriously the very wrong interpretation by some of our FB friends and take exception to their erroneous postings and comments. The picture that was posted earlier today, because of their very wrong interpretations, has been removed. Should you still be offended in any way, please unfriend Whale Tale.”
In the statement on his Facebook page, Finizio said “today something came to my attention that should shock the conscience of every New Londoner,” The Day reported.
“This kind of venomous political discourse poisons our community. Comparisons to Nazi-ism are clearly outside the boundaries of acceptable behavior,” he wrote according to The Day.
Finizio asked for the Facebook page to be taken down and reached out to politicians who have supported him to also denounce it. If they do not, he said, they are “condoning this type of behavior.”
“That these individuals would (choose) MLK weekend to engage in hate speech is clearly unacceptable,” he wrote, referring to the Monday holiday in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., The Day reported. “My vision for New London is for a City that values all our residents as equals and where political disagreements, passionate though they may be, can be handled with professionalism and respect.”