CARTHAGE, Mo. — With chants of: Hey hey, ho ho, this racist mess has got to go… Resign Bartosh, Resign Bartosh.
A small, but dedicated group assembled Thursday afternoon around 3:30 PM and in between the chants, they were interrupted numerous times by individuals. Some were trying to change the direction of the protest to make it political. But it was not political.
Some individuals were counter protesters, it got heated at times, but not out of hand. Carthage Police were close by.
However the theme seemed to come down to inclusion.
“The next generation is not going to stand privately and advocate and allow the racist and bigotry that we see from Commissioner Bartosh.” Justice for Joplin, Dola spoke from the megaphone.
She went further in a conversation with an unnamed male. “We are all about freedom of speech, but what you say sometimes can cost you your job.”
The protesters were bringing to light that, as an elected official, Commissioner Bartosh had an offensive post on his social media FB page regarding Muslims. It was a post originally posted by a Florida in 2012 quoting a Canadian speaker. Then the Florida man shortened it, changed it some to reflect America, and in January 2019 reposted it. Then in the summer of 2019 Bartosh shared it, making no comment. The post has now been removed from the commissioners social media.
Wednesday Carthage Police Chief Greg Dagnan was prepared ahead of time, assuring those in Carthage, it would be a peaceful protest. He spoke to the organizers in advance.
CARTHAGE, Mo. — Wednesday in a recorded message to the Carthage business community, Carthage Police Chief Greg Dagnan affirms there is a protest protest Thursday afternoon in Carthage.
“I can confirm it is happening. They are going be in the square area [Thursday] at 3:30 PM. I can tell you many of the organizers of these groups, I have personal relationships with, they definitely do not want to do harm to our community. They want to make a political statement, which is their right to do that. They will not do any vandalism or harm. So I am confident this is going to be a peaceful protest. People have also expressed concerns about counter protesters, coming to protest the protesters. While I think that is a possibility I don’t think that is really going to happen. However I do want to reassure everybody that we are prepared for every eventuality.”
We have obtained information via Facebook the event is titled: Protest for resignation of Commissioner John Bartosh. In a screenshot of a FB post from June 27, 2019, Jasper County Commissioner Bartosh, it appears anti-Muslim According to anticipated protesters. The group has expressed outrage that an elected official would have that on their social media.