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Racism and censorship major themes at 2020 Hummers Parade in Delaware

Jack Schreppler, Hummers Parade 'Grand Marshal for life' walks past protesters after greeting them during the Hummers Parade. (Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)

Jack Schreppler, Hummers Parade 'Grand Marshal for life' walks past protesters after greeting them during the Hummers Parade. (Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)

The annual Hummers Parade in Middletown, Delaware is known for satirizing current events in a provocative and sometimes polarizing way. Last year’s parade attracted a lot of criticism for a float depicting immigrant children in cages.

Jack Schreppler, Hummers Parade ‘Grand Marshal for life’ strutting down Broad Street during the 49th unofficial annual Hummers Parade Wednesday. Jan. 01, 2020, in Middletown, Delaware. (Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)
Hummers Parade Wednesday. Jan. 01, 2020, in Middletown, Delaware. (Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)
Spectators hold up an American flags during the annual Hummers Parade. (Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)
Many attended the 49th unofficial annual Hummers Parade Wednesday. Jan. 01, 2020, in Middletown, Delaware. (Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)

This year, the event continued in its normal fashion, with spectators lined up on both sides of Broad and Main Streets, waving flags, smiling and greeting each other with “Happy New Year!” Perhaps the most noticeable difference was the abundance of signs at this year’s parade, some against racism and others against censorship.

Hummers Parade Wednesday. Jan. 01, 2020, in Middletown, Delaware. (Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)
Many attended the 49th unofficial annual Hummers Parade. (Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)
Dela-Bear at the annual Hummers Parade. (Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)
Hummers Parade Wednesday. Jan. 01, 2020, in Middletown, Delaware. (Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)

In one section of the crowd, there was a small group of Latino and African American spectators who held up signs that read “Racism is not Delaware” and “Racism is No Joke.” One white spectator held a sign that read “This is our town.”

Racism was a major theme for spectators at this year’s Hummers Parade.(Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)
Racism was a major theme for spectators at this year’s Hummers Parade.(Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)
Censorship and freedom of speech were big themes at the Hummers Parade. (Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)

Scott Sounders, of the local NAACP said, “I believe that for us as Americans we have to care for one another, have compassion for one another, have empathy for one another, and understand each other’s circumstances. Only then can we all feel like we are valued, you know? When you’re downing somebody for their religious beliefs, their ethnic background, their disabilities, social and economic status, that’s never a good thing.”

Hummers Parade Wednesday. Jan. 01, 2020, in Middletown, Delaware. (Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)
The annual Hummers Parade Wednesday. Jan. 01, 2020, in Middletown, Delaware. (Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)
Many attended the 49th unofficial annual Hummers Parade Wednesday. Jan. 01, 2020, in Middletown Delaware. (Saquan Stimpson for WHYY)

Charito Calvachi-Mateyko, co-chair of the Delaware Hispanic Commission said, “We know where we stand. We are telling the town and everyone we know what is wrong and racism is not a joke, racism is not funny, racism is not part of Delaware.”

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