“Ride it out. It will all go away in time.”
By Josh Resnek
Racist Councilor Anthony DiPierro is sticking it out despite an avalanche of public requests for him to resign.
The young councilor, a cousin to the mayor and his campaign manager, is refusing to budge, this, despite his presence on the council being turned into a meeting to meeting cluster of angry public speeches by residents and officials.
This includes officials of the NAACP, which demanded that DiPierro resign immediately two weeks ago.
According to some of those who know DiPierro and who support him, he’s been urged to “ride it out.”
His chief supporter his cousin the mayor has not publicly said much about DiPierro’s racist memes and statements, which include DiPierro’s repeated use of the N word and anti-Black symbolism.
The racist memes and N word use were revealed last month by the Leader Herald and followed up by the Boston Globe and many Greater Boston media outlets.
The mayor early on told the public that an investigation was underway and that he would not stand for racism.
The caveat to that statement is that the mayor and some of his city hall buddies and col- leagues, including his media chief, have been sharing racist threads with their e-mails and text messaging.
Coming down on DiPierro would require the mayor to come down on himself and his friends. What has followed is a supposed investigation being conducted by Cathy Draine, the city’s chief equity officer.
Despite repeated attempts to determine, what, if anything Draine is doing, she has not chosen to make a statement to the Leader Herald.
Perhaps she has nothing to say. Perhaps she has been told to remain quiet.
Bishop Robert Brown at the last meeting of the city council delivered a classic, 30 minute appeasement summation of why DiPierro should be allowed to remain, and why forcing him to resign would be a worse crime than DiPierro has committed against the Blacks and Browns who live in Everett.
Bishop Brown’s niece secured a $175,000 management contract from the city last year to run the troubled Wellness Center at the former Everett High School.
It is believed the mayor presides over the award of such bids although the mayor will deny this.
The bid process for that contract award to Brown’s niece is now being studied by the Leader Herald.
Bishop Brown refers to himself as an “entrepreneur” and as a businessman and man of God in his biography.
He said at the council meeting: “The mayor does not control me…only God controls me.”
Two Black leaders in the Everett community familiar with Brown’s Broadway church claim the membership has not grown in two decades and that it is composed mainly of parishioners from out of the city.
Both leaders, women, wished to remain unnamed for fear of retaliation from Brown and the mayor.
Brown has made it perfectly clear: DiPierro is a lost soul who needs redemption and study to make him right to lead in Everett. Brown seemed to insist DiPierro needs to learn that using the N word as he does privately is bad behavior for a city councilor.
“That assumption is absolutely ridiculous,” said Councilor Mike Marchese.
“Anthony is old enough to know what is right and wrong…but obviously, he doesn’t.”
The mayor does not respond to requests for statements on the matter from the Leader Herald – but this is understood – the mayor has urged DiPierro to remain in office.
The mayor apparently believes DiPierro can ride it out, that the fuss will die down, and that soon enough, all will be forgotten and forgiven.
The mayor has also refused to discipline his media chief who participated in DiPierro’s hate mongering without objecting to it.
Former councilor and Attorney Fred Capone has appeared several times at recent council meetings to demand that DiPierro resign.
He and others have promised to continue making those demands as long as people are clamoring for justice to be done.
Other than for Marchese calling for DiPierro to resign, to leave his seat for the future reputation and well-being of the council, not another voice has been heard among Everett’s public officials about the burning issue.
At work is the generally held belief among a large number of Everett’s small and declining white population is that there are no problems with racism in Everett.
However, increasingly outspoken and influential Everett residents like businessman John Puopolo, and community voices Sandy Juliano, Paula Steriti, Darren Costa, Antonio Maya of La Communidad, Shane McNally and Guerline Alcy – and the Black civil rights champion the NAACP have all called for DiPierro’s resignation.
Alcy seemed to sum up the thinking of the city’s Haitian community with these words delivered at the last council meeting.
“You guys have to stop acting like its nothing. We’re tired. We want Anthony DiPierro to resign. We want him to step down. We’re going to keep coming here. Save your name. This is not going to get us anywhere. This is how a white councilor sees Black people. Please step down. The mayor is not able to save you. The mayor didn’t put you in that seat.”