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The mayor, D.C. and race

The Washington City Paper posed the question about D.C.'s mayor: "Is Adrian Fenty a Jerk?"

He may have been--many of his fellow politicians thought so--and that may explain why he got his clock cleaned this week despite widespread acknowledgment that he had improved city services and schools.

But if the coverage is any indication, the results were largely about race. And in a way that I find troubling: The African-American mayor was essentially accused of caring too much about white people and appointing too many white people.

I am not exaggerating.

Now racial and ethnic politics are a fact of life in big cities. If black residents of the District of Columbia don't think Fenty was looking out for their interests, they have every right to throw the jerk--er, the bum--out and replace him, as they did, with low-key Council member Vincent Gray.

Similarly, Marion Barry used to draw support from the capital's poorest black residents--even after being busted for crack--while being so reviled in the predominantly white wards that he told its citizens to "get over it" when he recaptured the mayor's office after his jail stint.

In mixed neighborhoods, The Washington Post reports, Gray won the black vote by 4 to 1 while Fenty won the white vote by 4 to 1. Many blacks didn't like Fenty's reform-minded schools chancellor, Michelle Rhee, who is Asian-American.

Here's Post metro columnist Courtland Milloy, who is black, celebrating Fenty's primary defeat:

"Watch them at the chic new eateries, Fenty's hip newly arrived 'creative class' firing up their 'social media' networks whenever he's under attack:
"She's creating a 'world-class school system,' they text. As for you blacks: Don't you, like, even know what's good for you? So what if Fenty reneged on his promise to strengthen the city from the inside by helping the working poor move into the middle class. Nobody cares that he has opted to import a middle class, mostly young whites who can afford to pay high rent for condos that replaced affordable apartments."

He's bringing in too many whites in an effort to help the city?

And before the Democratic primary, Post op-ed columnist Colby King, also African-American, began by complaining that Fenty had hired a white woman named Linda Singer:

"There was nothing in Singer's background to warrant her elevation to D.C. attorney general over the large number of more experienced and well-qualified black D.C. lawyers...

"Within his first six months as mayor, Fenty replaced African Americans with non-black people in four of the city's most high-profile jobs: city administrator, police chief, fire chief and schools chief, according to a July 3, 2007, Post story. 'Among those who hold arguably the 10 most influential positions' The Post reported, 'only one....is black.'"

Now maybe that represents a legitimate beef from folks in the neighborhoods. Politics is about taking care of your base. But can you imagine the reaction if a white columnist had written that the white mayor had hired too many blacks?

By Howard Kurtz  |  September 17, 2010; 6:00 AM ET
Categories:  Latest stories , Top story  | Tags: Adrian Fenty, D.C. mayor, Marion Barry, Vincent Gray, race  
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Comments

Howie, just because the Post and the the rest of the local media are obsessed with the race issue doesn't make it the true factor. Fact of the matter is that Fenty had an "Al Gore" problem: had he not lost his home ward (his neighbors and former constituents) by 20 points, he would still be the mayor next term.

Posted by: hoos3014 | September 17, 2010 6:42 AM | Report abuse

Howard - thank you for having the guts to point out the patently obvious, Mayor Fenty was an agent of change that employed too many white faces. Contrast the outstanding leadership skills, dedication, and most importantly competence, of his department heads over the buffoons and charlatans that characterized the previous mayor's appointments.

Posted by: 12345610 | September 17, 2010 6:58 AM | Report abuse

Better late than never. Was wondering if or when you guys would get it and what you would say when you did.

Yes, Fenty got put out for appointing too many whities and white women. That's how it works in DC. Now run tell that!

Posted by: Chill4asec | September 17, 2010 7:20 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Kurtz, I generally like your work, but here you just don't get it. Yes, this is about race, but in DC "race" is shorthand for "outsiders." "Race" and "outsider" blend in some weird way in DC.

Come on! DC has a long history of being controlled by outsiders. Not just politically (the Federal government), but also culturally. People from the suburbs often control the "meaning" of DC to outsiders. People from Alexandria and Rockville thinking they know what's best for DC. Senator Bilbo thinking he knows what's best.

People coming to DC to live for 2, 3, 4 years--they think they know best. No, not the stupid (Black) people who've lived here their whole lives--they just don't get it. "We're smart, we're educated--we know what's best for those people (Black people)."

Think about Michelle Rhee saying, over and over again, that if you're not on her side, then you don't care about children. Excuse me? She is an outsider, coming in here telling people that they don't care about their own children. "I care about your children--you don't. You're stupid."

I could go on and on and write about this for a while, but hopefully you get the point. And I don't really feel like making myself angry this early in the morning.

Posted by: foldingtime | September 17, 2010 7:28 AM | Report abuse

it's karma.......see adrian....you should've let anthony williams throw out that first pitch at nats park....taking credit that doesn't belong to you always comes back to bite you.

Posted by: earthling | September 17, 2010 9:13 AM | Report abuse

Milloy also called the young white professionals moving into the District 'myopic little twits."

Can you imagine a white columnist writing the same about DC's black residents? His office would be packed up by now.

Milloy, who does not even live in DC, and I would guess doesn't have much of a stake (or children) in DC schools, should be fired immediately from The Post.

Racism is racism. Period.

Posted by: trace1 | September 17, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Yes, you got it right... The election was sadly about race and the perception that Fenty didn't care about black Washingtonians. Not that Gray ever accomplished anything of note for anyone as a politician or bureaucrat...but he is a savy pol and he will go along and get along with the black power structure and bold changes that shake up that ossified structure will end.

I am a 30 year Ward 6 resident and have suffered too many years of crooked and at best incompetent DC goverment, epitomized by Marion Barry. Tony Williams started a turn things around to make this the world class city it should be, and no longer a plantation for Congress to rule. Fenty jump started that effort, but was not politically astute enough to continue. Unfortunately too many residents in this town retain that plantation mentality and simply want to hold on to the status quo they knew, guaranteed either by public assistance or a government job (yes, DC Public Schools is the prime example) neither of which effectively hold people accountable for results.

So we'll see what Gray "the healer" will accomplish and in 4 years we'll evaluate his results.

Posted by: seabiscuit47 | September 17, 2010 9:15 AM | Report abuse

I guess Milloy, who is not a DC resident, is not an "outsider" because of his skin color.

Posted by: trace1 | September 17, 2010 9:16 AM | Report abuse

It is very sad that base racial politics defined much (but of course not all) of this election. The new mayors first dilemma will be to embrace or repudiate those extreme racist elements within his supporters. I would say Rhee will be his first signal on that issue, but she seems intent on getting herself fired (the perfect escape!).

Note there is a very real and visible consequence to these racial politics that have been practiced in one fashion or another in DC for centuries. Can you tell me after a drive around the entire city that African Americans in DC are not paying an extreme price for these political ideals? Ultimately, its just sad, people live shorter and vastly unhealthier lives in the capital of the USA. If race based politics presented actual solutions, those would have manifested long ago. I pity those that let race define their existence so.

Posted by: mendelsonmustgo | September 17, 2010 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Bingo.

Posted by: confounded | September 17, 2010 10:28 AM | Report abuse

I think it may be time to replace Colby King. Why on earth should we have a presumption that all top city jobs go to African Americans? Everyone should compete fairly for the top jobs, regardless of race. I'm no fan of Fenty, but it seems to me that his hires were fairly diverse. We are heading more and more into a world where "mixed race" will be the majority.

Posted by: dcmom | September 17, 2010 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Seriously, Mr. Kurtz...can you explain why the racist Mr. Milloy is still employed at the Post? No white columnist would get away with what he said if he said it about blacks. Is the double standard there written into certain contracts, or just part of the culture?

It's YOUR job as a reporter on the media to figure out what the Post is thinking and provide their explanation for letting that racist screed be printed.

Posted by: pepin | September 17, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

It saddens me that the D.C. area news media are so hung up on race in 2010. I'm white, have lived in D.C. for 30 years in what the media always consider a "black" ward, talk to my fellow D.C. residents all over the city, and I NEVER hear the kind of constant racial animosity that's always being reported in the news media.

Posted by: Kathy8 | September 17, 2010 11:12 AM | Report abuse

It was Milloy's "Ding Dong" editorial that caused the Fenty-Gray issue to boil over into a full-blown racial controversy over the past two days. I've had three different people bring this up this morning at work. "Ding Dong" was the equivalent of yelling fire in a crowded theatre. The Post needs to understand the impact that its content--editorial or not--have on people in this city.

Ironically, the person that Milloy's rant hurt more than anyone was Gray. Any hope he had of unifying the city is being shredded by stuff like this, and the fringe commentators that pile on in the comments. The Ombudsman must address the Milloy issue. I simply don't see how the Post can condone blatantly racist writing.

Posted by: purpledog | September 17, 2010 11:18 AM | Report abuse

As a black person, I didn't have a problem with Fenty hiring non-Blacks. I will not deny that I heard other Black people whispering that sentiment, though. But I never had an issue with it.

My problem with Fenty was charges of corruption and cronyism. The baseball ticket childishness turned me off as well. I hated that he was depleting the city's reserves, and I hated that there constant rumors of money going missing, i.e. with the youth summer program. I also hated how he came across in interviews as rude towards the journalists and stubbornly in denial of the facts. For me, it had nothing to do with race. I would have had issues with a mayor with a 100% Black staff who did the same things.

Posted by: forgetthis | September 17, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

I have to wonder sometimes if most people working in the Post newsroom live in the suburbs...? Or are their friends and sources just so homogeneous that they don't really understand what living in D.C. is like in 2010?

Why is it that so many D.C. journalists seem to think that most D.C. residents wake up every morning thinking about their skin color? What planet do you guys live on?

Posted by: Kathy8 | September 17, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

"People who don't know their history are bound to repeat it" D.C. is a city of haves and have nots. If this continues and the racial hostilities continue. One small spark in this city will result in the worst racial riots since 1968. This time we will be watching $300.000 to $500.000 condos burned to the ground. It is very dangerous for half of the population feeling that they do not have a stake in the game and the other half of the population who feel like they are better than the people who have been living here their entire life. D.C. is very small, one block can separate a delipadated government housing project and an upscale condo building. This is a receipe for trouble if these racial, economic, and class issues are not dealt with on a responsible matter. Please no more commissions on race after the city burned down in racial riots again.

Posted by: kevltrlaw | September 17, 2010 11:30 AM | Report abuse

It's been apparent to observers from the beginning that this election was about race. It's interesting that the Post waited until after it was over to start writing about this.

Posted by: tomtildrum | September 17, 2010 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Race was never an issue that appeared in the news coverage to any degree. Many quotes about Fenty being arrogant and out of touch appeared, and of course Rhee appeared as an issue too.

Now that you mention it though, Fenty did slot too many non-blacks into key jobs. The city has always been run by blacks and for blacks since home rule. Everyone knows that. Why couldn't Fenty have balanced the leadership positions to reflect power-sharing?

In fact, with such a high-profile, non-black schools chief, Fenty hired far too many non-blacks into other key positions.

Washington DC's first attempt at racial power-sharing has failed. Whether it's Marion Barry's political head on a platter or 400 public school teachers, DC's whites always demand blood.

Posted by: blasmaic | September 17, 2010 11:48 AM | Report abuse

I have been thinking about this for a couple days and it seems to me that election results in DC are a mirror image of the Tea Party's lament: "I want my city back," as opposed to "I want my country back." In both cases, once dominant groups showed they were threatened by change. The rebirth of the long burned out 7th Street area (burned out when I was a college sophomore in 1968!) is symbolic of a demographic shift that the old power structure (including all those old Black church ladies Courtland Milloy fawns over) found intolerable, just as the election of President Obama made a certain percentage of the nation's white population become unhinged.

If Gray, so long buddies with Marion Barry, takes the city backward from what it has achieved under mayors Williams and Fenty, it's going to be decades before it gets going again.

Posted by: jhpurdy | September 17, 2010 12:05 PM | Report abuse

I am played out on this, and have commented about Mr. Milloy's article in another thread. I've got about 10 hour of work to do now, but I am posting here simply to say that I fully agree with Mr. Kurtz's observations.

Posted by: johng1 | September 17, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Oh, one more: if Mr. Milloy truly believes everyhting he typed yesterday, wouldn't it have been better to take a lesson from the great Nelson Mandella and be gracious and unifying in his work?

Posted by: johng1 | September 17, 2010 12:11 PM | Report abuse

That's why this city is a leper colony..

They view everything through race, have children, and collect gov't checks..

That's why DC will always be a joke, and successful people only live in NW, Virginia, or Capitol Hill...

You made your bed DC enjoy it...

Posted by: ObamaisFraud | September 17, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

I love my hometown. Where else would whites and blacks divided on two candidates. Two black candidates. The irony...

Posted by: boog44 | September 17, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

How did he improve schools?
I keep hearing and reading this>

THEY JUST FAILED AN EXTERNAL AUDIT WHERE ONLY 10 OF 121 SCHOOLS PASSED THE AUDIT. WHICH IS WORSE PERFORMANCE THAN THE SAME AUDIT FROM 2 YEARS AGO.

How is that "improved schools?"

And lastly, last I checked, there were TWO black men running for the same role. So how is that about race to pick one black man over another black man?

Wash Post an't get over that their endorsed candidate lost. Well, he lost.

Posted by: morrisday1 | September 17, 2010 12:17 PM | Report abuse

I can't speak for other voters, but I voted for Gray because of Fenty's arrogance and cronyism. My vote had absolutely nothing to do with race, and this storyline that the race was only about race is frankly kind of annoying.

Posted by: emcglaughlin | September 17, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

Gray should just step aside and let Marion Barry take over so D.C. can go beck to being a Third World kleptocracy run by a buffoon baboon. Face it, home rule has been a disaster for all concerned.

Posted by: schickelgruber | September 17, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

You make an excellent point. Can you give me the list of U. S. cities in which the population is majority white and the top government posts are held by non-whites who are brought in from outside the city? I'll wait while you search in vain for them. This assumption that qualified African Americans from the city do not exist for these positions is at the heart of many of the conflicts. In the meantime, we replace a well credentialed African American superintendent with an academically unqualified and inexperienced Chancellor and some praise her as a goddess whenever she appears -- merely because she is not black. If you want to be honest, please be totally honest.

Posted by: deliriousindc | September 17, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Clearly, someone is going to revoke my white card for voting for Gray.

Fenty did some good stuff, he was responsive to things like rebuilding Eastern Market and improving quality of life in neighborhoods. He was also petty, secretive, prickly, and shoveled money and power towards his friends over other more qualified people. Eight years of the Bush administration's behind the scenes wheeling and dealing was enough, I didn't need it coming from the mayor's office as well.

Posted by: marybindc | September 17, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Why do we assume that racial politics is only when a people of color hire individuals of their own race/ethnicity? Fenty was playing racial politics as well by not appointing too many African American. By problem with some of his appointment was that they were either not qualified or under-qualified - Michelle Rhee, Cathy Lanier, and Linda Singer.

Posted by: khathu | September 17, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

So Howard, let me get this clear. If you lived in a majority white city and a white mayor fired mostly white workers and then replaced them with younger, less experienced white workers, you wouldn't have a problem? Have you been watching the Tea Party lately? It took only one black man voted into a job traditionally held by white men to get them all fired up and ready "to take THEIR country back."

Posted by: gtaylor301 | September 17, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

blaismac wrote: "Washington DC's first attempt at racial power-sharing has failed. Whether it's Marion Barry's political head on a platter or 400 public school teachers, DC's whites always demand blood."

Last time I checked, DC is the most properous it has ever been in modern times despite the national recession. The nation's worst school system is the best it has ever been (but still has a very long way to go before public schooling is even a passable option for middle and upper class residents). A number of areas from Gallery Place/Chinatown to Navy Yard to U-Street to 16 Street Heights and so on, are the safest they've ever been.

The only thing that has "failed" DC is the general misunderstanding of these considerable accomplishments (that started with Williams and ended with Fenty) by the city's worst-off neighborhoods. They want DC to revert back to a cartoon of mismanagement, crime, and corruption. Why? I have no friggin' idea.

Posted by: dc-chi-guy | September 17, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Sadly this is spot on. Milloy and King are articulating the other side of bigotry. This is DC in 2010. And these two write not for some local rag handed out to metro riders for free, they write for The WASH POST!!!! Just embarrassing.

Posted by: dbunkr | September 17, 2010 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Kurtz,

The observation is accurate. In this city, race plays a large part. Not so much as to the race the mayor is, but more so to the perception of the mayors race relations. You have to take into account that poorer African Americans have heard the promise of better neighborhoods to come since the 90's, only to realize the reality that they would not be able to live in the "better" neighborhood in the present. 15 years of gentrification has forced them out of the neighborhoods they grew up in.

It's the mayor's job to better the communities for the people living in those communities, not kick them out. This was the problem with Williams and, unfortunately, with Fenty. There is a big divide in the quality of life, the perception of equality, and the trustworthiness of leadership that Gray will have to address in order to be successful. I would argue that even if the Mayor was white or another race, that if he or she could address those three issues, they would be beloved by the city as a whole.

Posted by: poeticfire | September 17, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Racism is not confined to one ethnic group. That racism exists among Washington's black population is not surprising -- it's a HUMAN condition afterall.

Posted by: RBCrook | September 17, 2010 12:29 PM | Report abuse

Get over it! Can you imagine if a white MAyor came to DC and hired a 90% non-Black staff, most of whom were from out of town? Do you think someone could at least legitmately question wether race was a factor. Well, that is exactly what Fenty did after getting elected with overwhelming Black support. And do you seriously think that this mayor would get re-elected? What is it with people at the Post who can't understand why Blacks in this town feel slighted by Fenty? And by the way, Colbert King's criticism of Linda Singer was not because she was White. It was because she was UNQUALIFIED to be Attorney General. She wasn't even a member of the DC BAR, for God's sake!! No one is calling for Gray to appoint only Blacks. But any Mayor who flagrantly shows contempt for the people who put him in office will quickly be shown the door, as was done on September 14th.

Posted by: PepperDr | September 17, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

This election wasn't about whites appointed to city position, but the fact that those appointed were inept failures. Take the appointment of the police chief, who now is presiding over a wave of street crime which is going unpoliced and unpunished. There's been no arrest in the murder at Sherman Circle of a bicyclist on his way home from his job. Look at the recent gang fight on the Green Line, which also has gone by with no arrests. Businesses are shutting down because crime is driving away their customers, and the police do nothing. We need directors of departments who get the city employees to work and work efficiently, and we are not getting that with the police these days. And that is Fenty's fault.

Posted by: edwardallen54 | September 17, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

I remember living in DC when I first moved here in 1987. Going to a drivers license and being asked by the clerk "Who you be?". I remember my boss at the time, a Jewish man living in upper NW, tell about the police officer's response to a break in at his house, "You're a white Jew, you don't belong in DC. I'm glad you got robbed."

I see the construction and the great rebound this city has made in the past 10 years. It's impressive.

It will be a shame if it all slips back into the Barry-esque days.

Posted by: dstrachan | September 17, 2010 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Got God Gang

this is not the tea party but a gang and i speak for alot of us old long hair hippie freak unabashed democrat moderate republican

WE ARE ALL TIRED OF ALL THIS TALK ABOUT RACE AND HOLOCAUST ETC ETC

the 60's are way over and all the special interest groups are not gonna stop on it's own

WE WANT OUT COUNTRY BACK SO ALL YOU GANGSTERS FOLLOW ME

psalm 127

more later.....

Posted by: wjkx999 | September 17, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

"It's the mayor's job to better the communities for the people living in those communities, not kick them out."

Absolutely not. The mayor's job is to enforce the law, keep the streets safe, snow and trash-free, and not waste the tax-payers' money. If he does THOSE jobs, he should be beloved by anyone knowledgeable enough to know the role of city government. Unfortunately, Fenty's loss shows DC still has a long road ahead education-wise.

Posted by: dc-chi-guy | September 17, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

When race trumps results .. everyone loses. Who cares today if people are black, white or red .. we need peole of intellect and character.

Posted by: sarno | September 17, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Chairman Gray. . I think the first thing in order is to gather all the DC residents on the mall, hold hands and sing Kumbaya. . .That will put an end to the fragmented makeup of DC. Wards 1, 2 3 and 1/2 of 4 will feel fulfilled as they touch the hands of a resident in Wards 1/2 of 4, 5,6,7 and 8.

Then you can begin making your appointments to appease the constituents that really put you in office. . .of course make sure it is "Title Rich" but with little power so if there is a screw up, you can easily fire that person and make it seem that you are exercising power and holding folks accountable. It's likely that you will surround yourself around the same types of people that Mayor Fenty has, deep down you know who's ice is colder, so you'll put them in charge as advisers.

In essence nothing has changed for DC, you don't want to erode the tax base or credit worthiness of this city so you'll keep the status quo, just be more nicer about the inclusion than Fenty.

Smart folks know that the upper and upper middle class (that is in income folks not morality) that run DC are divided. There are the former supporters of Linda Croop on the one hand of elitism and there were the supporters of Fenty who were elitist as well, DC just switched hands that's all, and Linda Croop's followers found it in Gray to take the challenge.

Unfortunately for the residents in Wards 7 & 8, there will be no change in your economic plight, hope is not enough nor are promises, change occurs in the mindset and if you continue to rely on government to do it for you, it's the same dance with a different partner every four years. WAKE UP!!!!!

Posted by: Attylaw | September 17, 2010 12:38 PM | Report abuse

The issue I have with race and political appointments is whether the issue is having a black face (for whatever that's worth) or having truly qualified people in power positions. If a non-black person is going to do the job well, then I'm for it. I'm not, however, for filling positions with black people just to say "See, we have black people in power positions." It shouldn't be a race to hire or appoint the most black folks. What are those people appointed actually doing?

Being black and living in a predominately black city that had elected a white mayor, I've seen that race becomes less of a factor when people do their damned jobs.

As an outsider looking in, it saddening to see that a man was ousted who did make improvements because his own people wouldn't support him because of their perceived idea that he wasn't for them.

Black people need to understand that no politician is "for us". They are for whoever is going to keep them in office and whoever has the most money.

I hope that DC finds in this new mayor whatever was felt that Fenty was missing, however, I don't have a feeling that it will.

Posted by: Knowledge1913 | September 17, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

It is about race. It's about new Black vs Old Black. Obama and Fenty are (and should be) the face and voice of the new Black leadership in this country. They are replacing the visionaries and civil rights leaders who enabled the reality of a Black President in our time.

But, the old Black voice doesn't work in the 21st century. That's why Gray will be a failure. His politics as usual and his acceptance of the status quo doesn't work today. Blacks do themselves and their interests a major disservice by refusing to move on to a better future with much more capable African Americans such as Fenty and Obama.

DC is changing, but Gray now stands in the way of it improving for the next few years.

Posted by: HillRat | September 17, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse


One black man defeating the other black man = racial issue

Silly WaPo hacks

Posted by: screwjob21 | September 17, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Howie,

"But can you imagine the reaction if a white columnist had written that the white mayor had hired too many blacks?" Yes I can imagine the reaction and I'll also bet that Malloy and King would be leading the attack!

Posted by: blpeyton | September 17, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

As a black person I found Milloy's piece one of the most racist, vile pieces I have ever read in a major US newspaper. He could not even veil his utter contempt for whites, in particular young white professionals who form much of the DC tax base.

If I was white I would vote with my feet and leave DC. Let it go the way of Detroit.

Posted by: cleancut77 | September 17, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Wow! The Post is behaving worst than a woman scorned. Your candidate lost, the people have spoken, now get over it! How long will you continue to report on this. Its a non-issue. Gray is the next mayor of DC. Fenty can run again in 4 years.

Posted by: luvleep | September 17, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Hey brother, you break dance? Cool, you're hired. Such qualification criterion boggles the mind. Que sera sera. Gracias, vios con Dios.

Posted by: boblusby | September 17, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

I agree with hoos3014....the media, the post etc are obsessed with the race issue and think if they keep saying and writing about it enough everyone else will think as they do. This primary had absolutely nothing to do with race it's "how you do" vs "what you do" as well as the proper protocol for due dilligence. Fenty has none of these qualities. And another thing I'm sick of hearing and reading articles from folks that don't live in DC...what gives you the right to speak about a city that you don't live in?!!! If you don't live in this city go somewhere and just sit down.

Posted by: TeresamMiller | September 17, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

If you remember, Sharon Pratt Kelly got accused of establishing a "pigmentocracy" because many of her appointees were not black enough. DC is very complicated racially. You have the east of the river blacks, the Howard University blacks,light skin, dark skin. Bottom line: east of the river blacks are the only real ones, LOL.

Posted by: dcpsychic | September 17, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Oh, Howie, how can you be so out-there (overtly) racist? Didn't you know that only white people (like you) can be racist? That's what they teach at great institutions of learning such as the University of Delaware, so it MUST be true. And anyway, you can't be correct because if it were true, all the traditional media stars (Tavis Smiley, Jim Lehrer, Katie Couric, Diane Sawyer, Brian Williams) would all be informing America that "the African-American mayor of DC was essentially accused of caring too much about white people and appointing too many white people." And THAT sure didn't happen. So, get over it, anyway!
NOT!!!

Posted by: DoTheRightThing | September 17, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Milloy is a complete racist...I never open his articles. Many of his other pieces outside of politics are offensive as well. The Post would do well to dispose of him.

Posted by: minhle1 | September 17, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Why is it that the only time race is an issues wortthy of comment is when a white person feels aggrieved? When or if a white person thinks that a black person is commenting on race, we are "playing the race card".

Posted by: GeorgeSeals | September 17, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

I love how white people throw out the supposition: "what if a white person had done that?"

Fact is Mr. Kurtz, whites DID do that (it was called America until the Civil Rights Bill was passed. Even in a city where they were the majority, blacks were 2nd-class citizens (and I use the term "citizen" loosely there). All this is common knowledge, but even a (supposed) intelligent journalist gets memory loss real quick.

And for those who say, "that was then.." I welcome you to Pres. Obama. He's been branded as "other" from DAY ONE (socialist, Muslim, Kenyan anti-colonial thinker, not 'one-of-us'). What do you suppose that's about Mr. Kurtz? Oh, can't be racism, no, God no, whites aren't racist anymore (they elected the man, didn't they?). Blacks are doing today what's been done to them SINCE they've arrived here, using their majority to meet their ends. And Fenty didn't understand that. And ANY politician in a majority minority city better understand who holds the real power, or else suffer Fenty's fate. So, go back to dreamland white people, you too Kurtz.

Posted by: sachancp | September 17, 2010 1:36 PM | Report abuse

I think that Milloy's column was unfortunate and certainly no help to Gray.

There is no doubt that Fenty had some significant achievements, although most of them seemed to benefit the wealthier areas of the city. Little surprise that residents east of the Anacostia not only didn't see that as a plus but were upset that the city was channeling its funds there. Many of the achievements that Fenty took credit for were the result of the better-functioning city bequeathed to him by the under-appreciated Anthony Williams who really turned city services around. [Funny, many hard-core Fenty supporters and the Post didn't take the same "competence-is-everything" approach when Fenty was running the insurgent campaign that eventually forced Williams to decide not to stand for reelection.]

I am puzzled about the widely held assumption -- by the Post, Kurtz and Fenty supporters - that Rhee was a success. All of the data seems to point the other way or, is at best, inconclusive. Scores went up her first year, when she clearly had nothing to do with it, and have gone down or stayed stable since. Whatever, there are no signs of a stunning success.

Rhee's actions in the past few weeks have not been those of a grown up. I would have advised Gray to keep her on so as to minimize disruption in the administration of the school system. It would have been interesting to see how Rhee might have fared had her less admirable characteristics been moderated by Gray. Unfortunately, she seems to have decided that her personal standing will be enhanced by martyring herself. I didn't notice Cathy Lanier out campaigning.

The racial tilt in Milloy's column was distressing. But so too is the "don't these stupid black folks know what's good for them" attitude taken by Fenty supporters. It can be argued that residents of those poorer, predominantly African-American parts of the city that voted overwhelmingly for Gray asked themselves Ronald Reagan's question: are you better off now than you were four years ago? From the results, the answer was clear.

Posted by: revanchist | September 17, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

This is a shame. I was hoping the District, with its new demographics and forward movement, was past all this. When Fenty ran for Mayor the first time, he carried all wards around 50 plus per cent. Tony Williams also wasn't "black enough" but he got the District out of receivership...something Marion Barry couldn't comprehend, let alone accomplish. DC is still a great place. I lived and worked in and around Washington for 36 years, fondly miss it, and will always consider those years the best of my life.

Posted by: buddyhardison | September 17, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

The truth is that Fenty was looked upon by the black community as being uppity, bourgeois, if you will. And what's worse than a bourgeois black man, a bourgeois bi-racial man. How dare he! And now that a real black man is back in office . . .

Posted by: mradams | September 17, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

whites are racists,blacks are not. milloy and his followers are egotistical fools that should be color blind for the good of da city. bring back his honor for life and they will get over it courtland

Posted by: pofinpa | September 17, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

There is a generational chasm among DC blacks with respect to appointments. *Many* young African Americans want mayors who appoint the best people for jobs regardless of ethnicity. The older generation is still stuck on the double standard of having appointees that "look like the population" aka black. Would you really want to accept a job offered even partially because of your race?

Posted by: dkbain1 | September 17, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Wow! White people calling Blacks racist. Now, are you people a product of Michelle Rhee's educational system, because you obviously don't understand the definition of racism. To promote one's race above or at the expense of others. There is also institutional racism, where infrastructure wise, gov't or commercial, can be used to control, dominate or subdue other races. Prejudice would be the word to most accurately describe what you think to be true of Black residents feelings about Fenty's hiring of white people in key gov't positions. However, Obama's administration is dominated by white people, but Blacks are not upset w/him. Why is that? it's because Black DC residents are disgusted w/a Mayor in Fenty that disregards everyone east of the Anacostia. They are fed up w/a high handed school chancellor in Rhee that thinks firing teachers is OK and tired of Fenty closing shelters and firing city employees, left and right. It's not about race. It's about class. The reason why Marion Barry get getting elected was because he was inclusive, not exclusive like Fenty. He ever heard of an elected offical going on vacation and he doesn't tell anyone where he's going. He catered to the Northwest. Great but those people don't necessrily have to get to work when there's two feet of snow outside there door. They've got paid leave, they're on salary for God's sake. In Southeast, if they miss work, they don't get paid. Yet, who got their streets plowed, first? White people, stop being so arrogant to say there is reverse racism here. Snow removal is cute. Baseball stadium, Yeah! But DC needs better schools, job training, actual jobs would be nice. How about this, grocery stores and how about this, Hospitals east of Anacostia. Isn't that what you have in Adams Morgan, upper northwest, etc. That's what works to reduce crime, homelessness and all the otherr blights of the City that you and Fenty have chosen to ignore. Again, reverse racism only exists in your head. When services were being planned, you were never left w/o a seat at the table. You always ate first and ate most. You say, I'm a life long DC resident, too. Well you always had a choice. In the City or out to Bethesda, Great Falls, even, great! When Blacks are "movin on up," like the Jeffersons, it's to Prince Georges, where they've got the highest taxes and worst schools in the state of Maryland. Yet, for all they pay in taxes, they've got the lowest home values, in newer communities. Why is that? That's your modern day ghetto. Keep pushing them east til they're in the Bay. But no no, Anne Arundel doesn't want them. Yeah, those Blacks, they're all racists. Really?!

Posted by: ktaylor15 | September 17, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse


"They want DC to revert back to a cartoon of mismanagement, crime, and corruption. Why? I have no friggin' idea."

It is because mismanagement, crime, and corruption to them means the exact same thing it means to you -- black people in charge. They percieve these attacks as attacks leveled by whites because black people are running the city government. It's not really that government is all that much better or worse in their view. It just means that whites are unhappy because blacks are in charge.

That is what was so fundamentally wrong with educational reform in Washington, DC. It was an effort by whites to fix a "mismanaged" school system. Each improvement would prove that white is right and black is wrong. I'm a moderate when it comes to race, but even I can see why no black parent would buy into that.

This week blacks won back their government, and Rhee's supporters are saying it is a step backward (Fenty endorsed Gray yesterday). Well, a black child can live a lot longer with a sub-standard education than he or she can with a self-concept of intrinsic incompetence.

Remember that the moment of outrage in Brown v The Board in 1954 was not that the black children weren't learning as much. Everyone knew that already. It was that they were learning their own race should be hated. We can't have that in America.

Posted by: blasmaic | September 17, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

This election had nothing to do with race it had more to do with Fenty not keeping campaign promises. Yes DC has improved over the past few years but many of the programs were put into place by Anthony Williams.

On a side not Fenty acted like a world class ass and pissed up a large section of the DC voters that is why he was not reelected.

Posted by: agarnett1000 | September 17, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

This is about class, ktaylor15, you're absolutely correct. And NoVA and Montgomery County will welcome back with open arms DC's business, development, middleclass and upperclass citizens that determine whether a city is prosperous like Arlington and Bethesda, or a dangerous and barren cesspool like Detroit.

Posted by: dc-chi-guy | September 17, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

"Well, a black child can live a lot longer with a sub-standard education than he or she can with a self-concept of intrinsic incompetence."

Sub-standard education and a self-concept of intrinsic incompetence are NOT mutually exclusive.

Posted by: dc-chi-guy | September 17, 2010 2:14 PM | Report abuse

So the moral of the story is Black people can be racist too....I love how Black people think they can't be racist. Note: When you discriminate based on someones skin color, you are being racist. Its not reverse racism...its just racism. And to think whites are not discriminated in DC is just plain ignorant and naive. If everyone would just go off stats and qualifications, instead of feelings we would be in much better shape as a city. I don't care what color you are as long as you are getting your job done and continually striving for improvement.

Posted by: patio100 | September 17, 2010 2:16 PM | Report abuse

I was under the assumption that there were not enough black people left in DC to elect a mayor without the white citizens voting for him as well? You may give us more credit than we deserve.

Why can't this election be about the fact that Fenty angered a lot of residents (black & white) with his attitude, lack of transparency, decision making, etc. Yes, if you are a qualified resident of DC, why is it that those high-level DC government positions are given to people from outside the city?

Again, the citizens of DC are being told you're stupid, you don't know what's good for you. Well, time will tell, won't it?

Posted by: summer55 | September 17, 2010 2:23 PM | Report abuse

I was under the assumption that there were not enough black people left in DC to elect a mayor without the white citizens voting for him as well? You may give us more credit than we deserve.

Why can't this election be about the fact that Fenty angered a lot of residents (black & white) with his attitude, lack of transparency, decision making, etc. Yes, if you are a qualified resident of DC, why is it that those high-level DC government positions are given to people from outside the city?

Again, the citizens of DC are being told you're stupid, you don't know what's good for you. Well, time will tell, won't it?

Posted by: summer55 | September 17, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

KTAYLOR15, I could not have said it better!Perhaps you need to say it again!?!

Posted by: royalk | September 17, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Come on folks, this is a mostly BLACK city and BLACKS should be appointed to higher positions.

Yes, the city has changed over the years for the better but those changes were from previous Mayor's (Barry and Williams) not Fenty alone. But he did take credit for all the good changes that he didn’t implement.

I’m glad to see him go, when you get to big to meet with your Colleagues or Maya Angelo or even Eleanor Holmes, not to mention the people you’re suppose to be helping the most then you’re to big to run this CITY.

BYE FENTY!!

Posted by: s_ksmith | September 17, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

All of this is degenerating into silliness. Grow up folks and get over it, whatever the "it" is. Get on with the business of educating the children. The election of another mayor does not signal a return to Marion Barry (whom Vince Gray does not support)or a cure-all that ails this city. The big issues will be the budget including the fact that Fenty inherited a large reserve from Tony Williams that is now depleted. That is the bottom line so deal with it without casting blame on others. Despite what some may think, a majority of DC blacks are not uneducated, do not receive welfare (I thought Welfare Reform took care of that), do not live in Wards 7 and 8, have the ability to use deductive and inductive reasoning, and can make their own decisions.

What's at issue here is the different choices DC voters made and the way many of those who don't like the outcome feel about it. It is sad that these outcomes cannot be accepted without bitter people projecting all sorts of craziness on what they mean, i.e., bringing back the Barry era (despite two control boards, two terms of Tony Williams, and one Fenty term), statements that African Americans have low expectations for themselves and their children, blacks prefer incompetence at the top over "true" school reform, etc.

This has never been a matter of accepting or rejecting school reform and it is terrible that it has come to this simplistic conclusion. The same blacks who elected Mayor Fenty four years ago decided they did not want to return him to office because he did not devote time to solving other issues such as jobs, jobs, jobs. Some voters came to see this as the mayor being more interested in doggie parks and bike lanes than jobs.

Some white and Hispanic voters obviously felt the same because the black vote alone could not have elected him. A vote against Fenty was a vote FOR jobs, job training, community college courses of study that prepare citizens for jobs (so you can then stop labeling them as lazy and trifling), inclusivity, fairness, and open government. It is SUBSTANCE and style that got Gray elected.

Unfortunately, the single issue of the campaign for some was Michelle Rhee, who was either naive or arrogant enough to have allowed herself to become the poster child. DC is about much more than school reform, although that is a critical problem, but it includes jobs, jobs, jobs. If Vincent Gray doesn't get this message he too will be out of a job.

Posted by: jaladner | September 17, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

"You make an excellent point. Can you give me the list of U. S. cities in which the population is majority white and the top government posts are held by non-whites who are brought in from outside the city? I'll wait while you search in vain for them. This assumption that qualified African Americans from the city do not exist for these positions is at the heart of many of the conflicts. In the meantime, we replace a well credentialed African American superintendent with an academically unqualified and inexperienced Chancellor and some praise her as a goddess whenever she appears -- merely because she is not black. If you want to be honest, please be totally honest."

Well stated. Now, GIVE IT A REST KUTZ!

Posted by: lacy41 | September 17, 2010 2:43 PM | Report abuse

I wish this was about class, but it isn't always. Courtland Milloy was patently racist and insulting to a large population in this city and he deserves to be fired from the Post immediately.

There are many causes to DCs problems, but the fact is government, particularly the DC government, cannot lift people out of poverty with job training when there are no jobs. Nor can it prop the city up by giving everyone government jobs, particularly if people who share Milloy's opinions keep people from wanting to move to DC, (and trust me, with the number of boarded up vacant houses in this city, there is plenty of room for everyone).

I certainly don't have all the answers or know the solution, but Milloy has done a serious disservice to the community by young, white people the scapegoat, and acting in a self-congratualatory, race-baiting manner.

I have every right to feel the victim of prejudice when I am being judged not by my thoughts or actions but by the color of my skin. Whether the prejudice impacts me as much, no, I agree with KTayolor15, it doesn't. I enjoyed the benefits of my parent's hard work and my own and certainly have had more privileges in life than most in this town. So I keep my head down and keep working hard, but I also devote my life to helping those less fortunate than I.

According to Milloy, I am just a young, white "twit."

I again reiterate. He deserves to be fired. If not because he is certainly a prejudiced race-baiter, but also because he simply doesn't get it an espouses idiocies in his column.

Posted by: yatrakarna | September 17, 2010 2:57 PM | Report abuse

Who wants good schools? Where is that going to get you? A lot of teenagers drop out anyway. Money would be better spent on basketball courts.

If your city has a black majority, the mayor has to have a blacks-only hiring policy? Doesn't matter who is the best person for the job. What overrides everything else is that they have to be black. Makes sense.

Are y'all proud that you re-elected Barry back in the day?

I wouldn't live in the District if you paid me.

Posted by: TaxiDriver | September 17, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Blasmaic,

You are proving Howard's point:

"400 public school teachers, DC's whites always demand blood."
&
"The city has always been run by blacks and for blacks since home rule."


So, if this is the case, why were the schools in such bad shape? "By blacks, 'for' blacks" (as you put it) seems to have been a pretty horrible way to run a system. Maybe, by the people and for the people would be better. Especially if it actually did some things really well, like education for example.

As far as I can tell the race complaint has nothing to do with Fenty's accomplishments.

Did Fenty personally invite white's back into the city at some party we were never told about?

Posted by: gconrads | September 17, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse

gconrads, I don't about Fenty. I would characterize his failings as born of inexperience. His triathelon training may have duped him into thinking he could out-run the challenges of managing a large city government.

As for the DC public school system, DC has long had a negative history because of its federal city status. Few people who have real experience in reform and development would say Rhee's plan was effective.

And I will say specifically that she has done immeasurable harm to the credibility of reformers. She'll be fine regardless of what happens to DC's schoolchilden? That's the Number One reason she should never have been included into the process. She had no stake in the outcome.

Posted by: blasmaic | September 17, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Too many unskilled people who barely got through high school looking for work. I don't know what kind of great, good-paying job they expect to get. Maybe they have a criminal record too just to make things more difficult.

More & more teenage mothers popping out babies in DC. Where will the babies be when they're 18? What will they be doing? More people standing in the unemployment line.

What is Gray going to do that Fenty didn't or couldn't do? You have only so much money in the DC gov piggy bank.

Blame it on Rhee. Blame it on everyone BUT yourselves. I guess that makes you feel better. The teachers can only do so much.

Posted by: TaxiDriver | September 17, 2010 4:13 PM | Report abuse

So what's new? Klaatu, in the original DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL, comes to earth to make our life better, makes the mistake of landing in DC and gets shot for his trouble. Hopefull Rhee and the other 'not-like-us' types who actually have improved life in the city won't be whacked, but absolutely nothing can be allowed to interfere with the status of 'professional victims,' so any meaningful improvement in the quality of the city must be stomped flat.

Posted by: feslop | September 17, 2010 4:27 PM | Report abuse

It's not about race its about economic class. DC has voted and the ignorant voters will get the govt they deserve and continue to convince the rest of the nation that DC is a cesspool of welfare children having children entitled ghetto dwellers wanting handouts who are incapable of governing itself.

Posted by: 10bestfan | September 17, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Howard, could not agree more. It IS troubling, and as a Fenty voter who is disappointed he wasn't re-elected, I hope Vince Gray actually lives up to his promise to "bring the city together."

I did not support Gray, but I will give him the benefit of the doubt. He deserves that.

However, if Gray focuses narrowly on his African-American base, and fails to realize that we live in a multi-racial, even international, city -- and like it that way -- then I will work hard to replace him in four years time.

Posted by: ionospherey | September 17, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Well, those "myopic little twits" pay their hefty share of taxes to support people in need in DC.

Courtland Milloy? Nah. He lives in Maryland.

Posted by: trace1 | September 17, 2010 4:58 PM | Report abuse

The influx of middle-class & upper-class whites shouldn't be seen as a threat. You can't stop it even if you wanted to. If you have the money, you can buy the property. If the new white residents have kids, they'll want the schools to be good.

How many black mayors has DC had in the last 40 years? How many have been good?
How many do you have fond memories of?

Quit whining about Whitey! They ain't the problem!

"We have met the enemy... and he is us."

Posted by: TaxiDriver | September 17, 2010 5:09 PM | Report abuse

I always got the sense from Fenty and his supporters that his attitude was "The old regime had their chance and the city was garbage. Now it's our turn."

Posted by: Aerowaz | September 17, 2010 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Wow, reading these comments I don't think that the city can ever move forward. This is why Adrian Fenty loss. As a Mayor who won every district the first go round he had the power to manage these issues that keeps DC so divided. As a DC native he was supposed to make all the residents feel like they were included in the decision-making process because it will take time to change the realities that are present in DC. The fact is Washington DC is controlled by Congress. They let the locals play, but at any time they can block legislation and with hold vital funds. Your race as a resident is not the deciding factor for DC and never will be under the current rules. Many white people fled the district for the suburbs in Maryland and Virginia leaving the colony to poor blacks who could not move. That is why there was a Black majority in Washington DC. By taking their wealth and affluence to states with representatives in Congress they could get what they wanted as residents of those states with full representation. Smarten up people.

Posted by: aumonte | September 17, 2010 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Howard Kurtz has issues with his black colleagues? Didn't see that one coming. LOL.

First, Howie defended Don Imus against criticism of his indefensible racist slurs directed at the black players on the Rutgers' women's basketball team.

Next came Howie's semiweekly putdowns of our first black president in his Post column. Remember his snarky "Obama adulation" feature?

Now Howie has turned the cannons towards ... his own black colleagues at the Post! Their offense? Writing about the fairly obvious racial dynamics in the DC mayoral race. His balck colleagues' observations were no different than those of many mainstream white writers yet, oddly, Howie signaled out only Mr. King and Mr. Milloy for his personal attack.
__________

That's what's unprecedented here, Howie: a writer devoting an entire column to personally attacking his colleagues. Must be tough living and working in Chocolate City when you seem to have an aversion to chocolate. Your rant belongs in the Washington Times, not the Washington Post.

Case closed.

Posted by: broadwayjoe | September 17, 2010 6:55 PM | Report abuse

Hello Howard Kutz, there are a lot of black Independents that don't like Adrian and what he did by showing whites are superior and blacks are inferior.

Howard, you are a typical white bitter racist. If you don't like Vincent Gray and blacks, move back to the mid west in your all lilly white hick town in Iowa somewhere. I am sick of whites thinking they know what's best for blacks and they are the superior race. Get over and go live with white U.S. racist Senator Harry Reid. It was this U.S. Senator that stated, whites in America feel comfortable with light skin Negroes. How racist were these comments Howard? Did you and other whites email Senator Reid's office on his racist comments?
Gezz, the election is over and move on bitter whites in D.C. and outside of D.C.

It amazes me to see whites living in Maryland, Virginia, and other parts of the country having a view on local D.C. politics. Blacks D.C. voters could give a darn about politics in Maryland, Virginia, and in any other United States city.

Posted by: ConservativeDemocrat | September 17, 2010 7:34 PM | Report abuse

In the eyes of many whites living in D.C., King Fenty was their first white mayor. Fenty was an Uncle Tom and never acknowledged, he was a black man. He's another high yellow Negro like former U.S. Congressman Harold Ford, Jr. pandering to whites for their approval, but at the end of the day, they are the N word to whites in America. (Uncle Toms)

Fenty is not a member to the D.C. Bar and he's not an intelligent Attorney. I wonder what his grades were like at Howard University Law School. Many whites in America see Howard University as being an inferior school of academic education.

Posted by: ConservativeDemocrat | September 17, 2010 7:51 PM | Report abuse

"But can you imagine the reaction if a white columnist had written [snarky columns disrespectful of the first black president, Barack Obama]?

Our recollection is that there was no reaction when you did that.


Posted by: broadwayjoe | September 17, 2010 8:36 PM | Report abuse

I am a resident, voter, and taxpayer in Ward 4 Washington, D.C. This is the same Ward King Fenty lives in. It was the majority of black Ward 4 voters that launched King Fenty's political career 10 years ago against his run for the Ward 4 D.C. Councilmember against former Ward 4 Councilmember Charlene Drew Jarvis. Once King Fenty became mayor, the power went to his head and he turned into a childish vindictive monster. Fenty kicked many black Ward 4 voters/residents to the curb and starting playing racial politiics. King Fenty catered to white weathly and white gay and lesbian D.C. voters. This type of attitude showed, King Fenty saw whites superior and blacks as inferior. I am glad King Fenty was banished from his kingdom (Wilson Building). Maybe he will have a job offer from his mentor, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Hopefully he can take Peter Nickles, Ron Moten, Ron Austin, Neil Albert, Michelle Rhee, Linda Argo, Janice Quintana, and Gabe Klein with him. Good riddance to them all!

Native Washingtonian

Posted by: Ward4DC | September 18, 2010 12:53 AM | Report abuse

White people really are trying to live Dr King's dream of people being judged by their character (and their results) but blacks can't seem to get past quotas and counting the number of black faces wherever they go.

Posted by: oldiesfan1 | September 18, 2010 8:13 PM | Report abuse

@DC-CHI-GUY....Actually, it is the mayor's job to improve neighborhoods through neighborhood programs, lowered crime rates and the such. I give him credit for meeting some of those needs, but the reality of the matter is that politics is all about perception. You can do a bang up job, but if the people do not feel that you have their best interest at hand, they will not vote for you. That's not a race issue, it's a life issue.

Posted by: poeticfire | September 20, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

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