Hyde quits City Commission race over alleged racist comment
SARASOTA - Martin Hyde quits City the Sarasota city Commission race after allegation of a racist comment.
Because Hyde allegedly told Hispanic players to cut the grass, the Sarasota City Commission candidate appears to have been banned from Sarasota’s Bath & Racquet Club after a confrontation with some young Puerto Rican tennis players who allege Hyde made a racist comment, according to the Herald Tribune.
Hyde adamantly denies that he made the comment or did anything racist but said he plans to withdraw from the commission race because of the attention surrounding the incident.
The allegation stems from a confrontation last Tuesday at the club that gained attention late Friday when a video showing someone, or multiple people, confronting Hyde about the alleged comment was posted on Twitter. The person filming the video is a 15-year-old Puerto Rican junior tennis player, according to his uncle Javier Irizarry.
Hyde then tries to have the person recording the video kicked out of the club in a rolling argument that moves from the tennis courts to inside the club. Somebody again accuses Hyde of racism.
“You’re telling me to cut grass because I’m a Hispanic,” a person on the video says.
Hyde first denies on the video that he made the “cut the grass” comment.
“You said! You said cut some grass, man,” is the response from someone on the video, or possibly multiple people.
“Yes, so what?” Hyde responds.
Hyde told the Herald-Tribune that his “Yes, so what?” statement was not an acknowledgment that he made the “cut the grass” comment, but was in response to another allegation.
“I was replying to a previous comment,” about being rude, Hyde said.