The letter of April 1 supporting Mayor Nikuyah Walker’s recent poem and accusing those critical of it of racism (“Mayor pierces city's veneer of benevolence,” The Daily Progress) was typical of a mindset trapped in identity politics.
While emphasizing the slogan “Unmasking the Illusion,” the letter failed to recognize the illusion that Walker has the judgement and leadership skills to participate in governing Charlottesville.
Walker’s statements were foul of expression and foul of spirit. It would be better, as Councilors Heather Hill and Lloyd Snook correctly stated, that Charlottesville should be judged by its deeds in promoting equity.
Charlottesville has made significant financial investments in underserved communities and will continue to do so. No one sees this as self-serving benevolence, as the letter alleged, but as a necessary redistribution of resources to right wrongs.
Nor is consideration of the well-being of all citizens, what the letter erroneously termed “white comfort,” something to be shunned.
While these actions may never satisfy Walker, her obvious contempt for many in Charlottesville, so clearly if boorishly expressed, deprives her of the privilege of continued participation in the governance of our city.
John T. Delehanty