“It seems for the sake of professional decorum, the people of color on city council are too afraid to say what black people in Jacksonville have long been saying: Lenny Curry is a racist bully,” Crooms asserted on Facebook last weekend, adding that the first-term Republican incumbent has “bullied the people of color on city council to pass what he wants often at the expense of black citizens and working people.”
These tactics, Crooms said, aren’t used on white Council members, but are reserved for Garrett Dennis and Anna Brosche.
Crooms also charged Curry with “upholding the racist policies of President Donald Trump.”
Crooms, when asked why he was running by host Melissa Ross, noted that America is headed toward “fascism.”
He is driven to run by many issues, including police accountability, stronger unions, and boosting the minimum wage.
“The campaign has started off on a hot streak, and continues on a hot streak,” Crooms said, saying he was the “most visible candidate in the race” and believes he can take a majority against the well-funded mayor in the first election despite a crowded field.
“I would hate to have to run this race in a runoff again,” Crooms said.
Crooms became known to Jacksonville residents in the wake of a protest that went awry in Hemming Park last April.
Crooms, who is deaf (and an activist for the deaf), ended up being beaten into unconsciousness by Jacksonville Sheriff’s Officers at that protest as a result of Snow’s actions. He was one of five protesters arrested; charges were dropped in June, with community sentiment on the side of Crooms and the rest of the Jax 5 protest contingent.
Crooms joins a growing field of candidates against Curry, who has banked nearly $2 million for his campaign.