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posted Friday, October 23, 2020 - Volume 48 Issue 43
Former Seattle Mayors call for return to civility in public discourse
Section One
ALL STORIES
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Former Seattle Mayors call for return to civility in public discourse

A statement from former Seattle Mayors - via Facebook

As former Mayors of Seattle, we condemn the continuing threats of violence against our elected officials, including Mayor Durkan and our City Council members. These threats, homophobic, misogynistic and anti-immigrant slurs, and the destruction of personal property have no place in our city or as part of our civic discourse.

We may agree or disagree on specific policy considerations and debate those differences vigorously, but recently many of our public officials have faced ongoing organized efforts to intimidate them and cause destruction. Enough is enough - threatening to harm others, inciting hate speech, or damaging their property is not acceptable.

These harmful actions do nothing to advance the public's interest. Instead, these behaviors divide us and damage our shared commitment to the common good. We don't believe the people of Seattle want these behaviors to continue in any fashion.

We are also concerned for the safety of all Seattle residents from violence and hate during these trying times. Disease, loss of income, and isolation due to the pandemic is hard on individuals and families. There is no question that this is a traumatic time for Seattle, indeed our nation. We acknowledge this trauma and the toll of inequity and racism on our residents. This is a time for Seattle to prioritize the economic and physical security and safety of all residents, no matter the political currents swirling around us.

Wesley Uhlman (1969-1977)
Charles Royer (1978-1989)
Norman Rice (1990-1997)
Gregory Nickels (2002-2009)
Michael McGinn (2010-2013)
Bruce Harrell (2017)
Tim Burgess (2017)


EDITOR'S NOTE: We noticed that former Seattle mayor Ed Murray was not a signer on this letter so we reached out to him for a comment:

"I was asked to sign onto an earlier version that focused solely on the harassment directed against the current mayor (something I certainly can identify with). I believed the earlier version should be broadened to address the larger issues of race, police reform, and the violence and harassment so many experience in this City and this nation. In addition, I was concerned the original language, combined with my signing it, would distract from the larger conversation. I did not see the current version." - Ed Murray (2014-2017)

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