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How the owners of Ouzo Bay might find redemption | READER COMMENTARY

Protesters chant decrying racism at the entrance of Ouzo Bay restaurant at Harbor East. June 24, 2020
Protesters chant decrying racism at the entrance of Ouzo Bay restaurant at Harbor East. June 24, 2020 (Karl Merton Ferron/Baltimore Sun)

The humiliation experienced by Marcia Grant and her son Dallas at Ouzo Bay last week was the result of a deliberate discriminatory policy that has no place in Baltimore or anywhere else (”Mother, son who were denied service at Ouzo Bay discuss racism on ‘GMA’: ‘It was based on the fact that Dallas was Black,‘” June 24). It is understandable that Ms. Grant would not be interested in meeting with Alex Smith, especially after his cringeworthy comment about wanting to mentor Dallas.

However, remembering the magnificent grace shown five years ago by surviving relatives of the Charleston, South Carolina, shootings who forgave the murderer, I’m wondering if something positive can result here. What if Ms. Grant would invite Mr. Smith and include others, Rev. William Barber II, leader of Repairers of the Breach, and Kim Anderson of the Southern Poverty Law Center, to exact real change such as diversity in executive positions in the Atlas Restaurant Group? And sensitivity training for each and every employee?

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This can be a teachable moment for Dallas, who would see first-hand how a hideous act can result in meaningful change. He could also learn from his mother the power of forgiveness which should never be transactional but given freely.

Susan Goodwin, Baltimore

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