The Republican Club of Frederick County (RCFC) would like to respond directly to the recent piece published in The Frederick News-Post. It contains a number of inaccuracies. The first is that the op-ed incorrectly states in its initial sentence that Sheriff Jenkins and the RCFC are hosting a “Citizens for 287(g) Rally” on Oct. 6. Rather, the rally is being held by the Citizens for 287(g), a community-led group of citizens who support the sheriff and the relevant program.
This distinction has been communicated to a number of groups as well as through the official press release for the event. The fact that the Frederick County Democratic Central Committee is perpetuating this false narrative is disappointing at best, further concerning about the political nature of their goals with this op-ed.
In the same op-ed, the FCDCC suggests that “the language that has been used to describe our immigrant brothers and sisters in the community has been nothing short of fear-mongering, and they’ve been consistently devalued and smeared.” This statement is viciously imprecise as to the language used and who is using it. Moreover, in this sense, there is a very real concern that the FCDCC is engaged in the very fear-mongering by which they purport to be alarmed. At a time when there is this much polarization in our political discourse, it is divisive, distracting and fallacious.
Without going too far into a rebuttal, the Republican Club of Frederick County would like to first focus on elements with which we agree. We believe that immigrants in our community are our brothers and sisters. Furthermore, they are our mothers, fathers, daughters and sons. Our club is made up of a number of immigrants, newly naturalized citizens and descendants of immigrants. We are a club that welcomes and encourages diversity and inclusiveness throughout Frederick. We are a diverse club in racial distinction, ethnic origin, religious belief, sexual orientation and ideology, and we are growing.
The club is participating in the rally in order to voice its support for Sheriff Jenkins and his implementation of the 287(g) program and encourages its members to do the same. We will never run from what we do support. This is an important subject and should be openly discussed and driven by civic participation. To be clear, we support strong borders and believe that Frederick County is safer when it coordinates with federal law enforcement. At the same time, we strongly support legal immigration and the contribution immigrants provide to our community. Our club also rejects hate groups and hate speech, but we also understand that these terms are often used spuriously as weapons against political opponents.
Once again, this club did not organize the rally and has had little involvement in booking speakers. There may be meaningful criticisms of the organization of the event, and those should be directed to Citizens for 287(g). If we were to hold it, the rally would have looked different. For example, we would have encouraged bringing to the forefront more diverse voices. However, just because we didn’t organize it, doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t engage and participate, and in lieu of further information, we will continue to do so vigorously.
The club will always agree that hate has no home in Frederick County, to borrow a term from the Democratic Central Committee. We would hope that sentiment would be shared by the Democratic Central Committee in relation to partisan differences. We invite Democrats to engage in meaningful and substantive debate on this issue and all others. However, we do encourage that, in doing so, the Frederick Democratic Central Committee will be more responsible and precise in its charges and avoid the inaccuracies and stereotypes that so degrade our discourse and belittle political opponents.
Republican Club of Frederick County
Republican Club of Frederick County