HYDE PARK — Ald. Will Burns (4th) was caught apparently "flipping off" one of his critics on Twitter earlier this week.
The alderman’s Twitter account posted an emoji of a hand with a finger raised in response to a tweet from Martin Ritter, a teacher at Marshall Metro High School.
On Wednesday night, Burns announced via Twitter that he had won the endorsement of Democrats for Education Reform, a pro-charter school group.
"I wouldn't be proud of that," Ritter then tweeted at Burns. The group has been critical of the Chicago Teachers Union in the past.
Burns responded with the emoji of the raised finger; it's a little unclear which finger was being raised.
When Ritter asked Burns whether he was being given the middle finger, @ald4_willburns replied, “yup,” followed 10 minutes later by a seemingly nonsensical “Miss you.”
The exchange, which started around 9 p.m. Wednesday, was deleted shortly after it happened, but was captured in screenshots by other users.
Ritter said in an interview that he had no previous contact with Burns. He declined to comment further.
The 4th Ward office referred questions to Burns’ campaign office, which declined to comment.
It is unclear whether the tweets were made by Burns or a staffer with access to the account.
Burns was one of five aldermen who Democrats for Education Reform endorsed on Dec. 23, including Michelle Harris (8th), Michael Diaz (45th), Emma Mitts (37th) and JoAnn Thompson (16th).
The group has contributed $1,200 to Burns’ campaign fund in the last two years. The group was a major force behind state Rep. Christian Mitchell’s re-election to Burns’ former seat in the 26th District, contributing $34,500.
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