Peters apologizes for soliciting donations for woman who spit on Eric Trump

Sen. Robert Peters (Herald file photo)

By AARON GETTINGER
Staff writer

Sen. Robert Peters (D-13th) has apologized for a tweet in which in solicited donations for the woman who spit on President Trump’s son. He deleted the Tweet after the GoFundMe campaign set up for her turned out to be fraudulent.

On Thursday, Peters called his tweet his “first dumb Twitter moment” and pledged to “be more patient and do more digging before [jumping] onto social media.”

“If anyone is upset about my stance on civil disobedience or views on the criminal justice system, I’m more than willing to have a conversation with them,” he said. “If folks are upset about sharing the page publicly, I apologize and am more than willing to own that.”

Eric Trump was at The Aviary cocktail lounge in West Loop, 955 W. Fulton Market, Tuesday evening when a waitress spit on him. She has been placed on leave, not fired, and Trump decided not to press charges, as reported by the Tribune.

The GoFundMe crowdfunding page st up for her defense, however, turned out to be a sham. A woman misidentified herself as the waitress who assaulted Trump and said that the The Aviary had fired her. A friend set up a GoFundMe crowdfunding page for her benefit, as reported by Block Club Chicago.

On the evening of Wednesday, June 26, Peters tweeted support for the woman from his political, not governmental, account, urging followers to share the fundraiser “and show solidarity to a brave civil disobedient.” He was listed as having donated $20 to the effort; the GoFundMe eventually raised over $5,000.

Though ethicists debate the exact definition of the term, civil disobedience is overwhelmingly considered to consist of peaceful, nonviolent acts of protest. Transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau defined the term in a titular 1849 essay explaining his refusal to pay taxes as a form of protest against slavery and the Mexican-American War.

Illinois statute defines spitting as battery, a misdemeanor offense punishable by up to a year in jail and a fine up to $2,500.

a.gettinger@hpherald.com