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Dept. Of Sanitation Chaplain Causes Stir Comparing NYC To ‘Plantation’ At De Blasio Inauguration

Rev. Fred Lucas Jr. speaks during Mayor Bill de Blasio's inauguration on Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2014. (credit: CBS 2)

Rev. Fred Lucas Jr. speaks during Mayor Bill de Blasio’s inauguration on Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2014. (credit: CBS 2)

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – One of the invocations during Mayor Bill de Blasio’s inauguration Wednesday raised some eyebrows when the Sanitation Department’s chaplain compared New York City to a “plantation.”

Rev. Fred Lucas Jr. was one of four people to deliver an invocation during Wednesday’s ceremony.

“Free us from the shackles of partisan politics, political correctness and personal egos and agendas,” he said. “Let the plantation called New York City be the city of God, a city set upon the hill, a light shining in darkness.”

The comparison of New York City to a plantation unleashed a rush of tweets online, with many calling Lucas’ comments a disgrace.

But others like Councilman Brad Lander applauded the speech, calling it a “powerful and fearless call for justice.”

Keith Urbahn, a one-time aide to former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said he was stunned that the Sanitation Department even has a chaplain.

In his inauguration speech Wednesday, de Blasio thanked Lucas and the others who delivered invocations for their words of prayer.

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