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Berating lone Black council member not a profile in courage

Fallout from shocking city council meeting still lingers

By JOSH RESNEK

Everett is a hot zone. It is a “red” city according to the Department of Public Health.

The virus is running rampant everywhere, and it is beginning again to run rampant here.

Councilor Gerly Adrien does not want to catch the virus. She is young but parents and uncle living with her are not.

Councilor Gerly Adrien

She is not worried about getting getting the virus.

She should be because she is Black. Blacks catch the virus more easily than whites.

Everyone paying attention to the virus statistics understands this

Adrien’s worry is giving the virus to others.

If there is a bit of sane thought to be shared with her colleagues, it was that.

At last week’s city council meeting, no member was wearing a mask inside the council chamber. No windows were open. The same air breathed by everyone was recirculated again and again.

Councilor Adrien did not attend the meeting in person – for all of the reasons enumerated above.

She chose to use Zoom.

Technical disturbances caused by media incompetence which begins in the mayor’s office and dribbles down to the fellow running such meetings with antiquated equipment that does not work got things off to a bad start.

One thing led to another. Then, one by one, many of Adrien’s colleagues blamed the technical issues on her because she chose, as the law allows, to do the meeting from another location.

Their reasoning was specious at very best and was all about prejudice at very worst. Everett people are pretty smart about their public officials.

They know how they think. Everett people are also pretty fair-minded.

Adrien has never hurled an insult or a threat or asked any of her colleagues to resign. She is always a well-spoken, self-effacing lady, but not the kind of lady her colleagues wish to sit with.

To most of her colleagues, she is not the new Everett they want to be a part of.

She would be better for them silent and submissive, apologetic, and halting.

Some members attempting to show how smart they are to the viewing public commented that if they were there, Adrien should be there.

Still, others commented that the technical problems were hers. That if she were there, everything would have been fine.

The translation of this is thus: be here or be gone.

Some said she should resign.

What they thought to themselves is the worst insult of all.

She knows what they think of her.

They let her know in no uncertain terms last Monday.

Adrien will not allow herself or anyone of color or ethnicity, including white people, be degraded for who they are.

The councilors who be- rated her should know better.

They should apologize – but they won’t.


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