My endorsement: A man of character
By Virginia E. Hayes Williams
My 84-year-old fingers don’t fly nimbly across the keys of a newfangled smart phone, but I read the newspapers front to back, especially the editorial pages. I also love to listen to my friends, my children, and especially my seven grandchildren, and go back and forth with them on topics, especially, right now, the race for mayor of the District.
I know a bit about that job from the eight years when my son Anthony was mayor. As a woman who once sang in Hollywood films and local church choirs, I now sing the praises of D.C. Council Chairman Vincent Gray every chance I get. He knows that to grow this city we must rebuild the rainy-day fund that my son built to a large surplus but that since has been drained by the current mayor to balance the budget.
Gray has the civility, intelligence, determination and judgment that I want to see in a mayor. His theme of “One City” resonates with me. He listens to people of all classes, races, ages and stations in life. He is a gentleman with integrity.
In my lifetime, I have been privileged to work with some of the great leaders in the civil rights movement, including the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. They preached the theme of judging a person on character. Character is in style — for any generation, for any culture, for any station in life. It is not old-fashioned. And character is what will make Gray an outstanding mayor.
I don’t buy into any arguments that he is slow to react, too inclusive or is in any way ponderous. He is an intelligent, thoughtful man who throughout his career has rendered fine service to the underprivileged, those who otherwise might have slipped between the cracks, young students, seniors and fledgling businesses. He doesn’t confine his alliances to big money and old buddies. All in all, he has strived to make the city a wonderful place to live and work. Make no mistake, he listens, learns and acts decisively.
His loyalty to friends in all walks of life is legendary. But he and they know full well that his job in the city government is paramount and he will never violate his pledge to do the best for all of his constituents and for the city as a whole.
Vincent Gray can bring this city together. He is my choice for “One City.” He is my choice for our future. Elect him mayor.
The writer has participated in the Gray campaign as a volunteer.
To participate in "My endorsement," make the case for your candidate in the D.C. mayor's race in 200 words or fewer, and e-mail it to firstname.lastname@example.org with “My Endorsement” in the subject line. Please include your ward number, a day and evening phone number (not for publication) and a note describing any connection you have to any of the candidates, their campaigns or D.C. politics in general.
| September 8, 2010; 8:50 AM ET
Categories: D.C., D.C. politics, HotTopic, My Endorsement
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