Steven Choi – The Dean Grose of Irvine

E-mail picture sent by Los Alamitos Mayor Dean Grose

E-mail picture sent by Los Alamitos Mayor Dean Grose

Earlier this year we had the example of Racism We Can Believe In from Los Alamitos City Councilman/Mayor Dean Grose. In case you don’t remember, Mayor Grose is the guy who sent out an e-mail that included this picture with a heading that read, “No Easter Egg hunt this year.”

An African-American constituent who received the e-mail was offended by it’s content.

“I think he’s saying that since there’s a black president, there will be no need to hunt for eggs since they’re growing watermelons in the front yard this year,” [Keyanus] Price wrote.

She responded to the e-mail with: “Hey, that’s not nice at all. Not all black people like watermelon… you should know better than that.”

Grose replied: “The way things are today, you gotta laugh every now and then. I wanna see the coloring contests.”

As a result of his conduct, Grose resigned from his position as Mayor and member of the City Council.

Choi with anti-Pelosi sign, (credit the

Choi with anti-Pelosi sign, (credit the

Now we have Councilman Steven Choi strutting around the lobby of the hotel with a sign on his back depicting Speaker Pelosi as Josef Stalin. What Choi did at the Democratic Party of Orange County’s Harry S Truman Awards Dinner last Friday night was worse than the conduct of Dean Grose. When dignitaries of any political party come to visit the city Choi represents, as an elected official he is expected to show them due respect by virtue of their position.

Choi, like Grose, is entitled to his beliefs and has freedom to speak out about those beliefs. However, a public partisan display equating the Speaker of the House of Representatives with a murderer of millions of people, is as outrageous and offensive as the racist nature of the e-mails sent by Grose.

While Choi was parading around with his banner, Councilmember Beth Krom was welcoming Speaker Pelosi to Irvine at the request of Mayor Sukhee Kang. In his post on Monday Dan Chmielewski wrote:

Choi with Irvine City Council Badge (credit

Choi with Irvine City Council Badge (credit

While the Irvine City Council is officially non-partisan, Council member Steven Choi has taken the extreme step of conservative partisanship to show up in the lobby of the Irvine Hilton wearing a banner on his back equating House Speaker Nancy Pelosi with Josef Stalin, complete with a Hammer and Sickle. Choi used his position as a city council member to gain access to the Hotel to effectively embarrass himself, the city council and those city residents attending the event.

If a Democratic Council member were to have behaved in the same way towards a Republican Speaker of the House, Councilman Choi would likely have been all up in arms over the disgrace such a disrespectful action would bring upon the city. At a minimum the Irvine City Council should admonish Choi for his behavior. To save face, Choi should apologize and take the lead offered by Dean Grose and resign.

More posts on this topic:
Krom Speaks Out on Choi’s Antics
Irvine Council Member Steven Choi Embarrasses Himself and City at Truman Dinner

  5 comments for “Steven Choi – The Dean Grose of Irvine

  1. Dan Chmielewski
    December 8, 2009 at 10:00 am

    Steven Choi made blog roundup this morning!

  2. Gustavo Arellano
    December 8, 2009 at 10:08 am

    Sorry, Dan, but racism trumps stupid ideological comparisons any day. What Choi did was moronic, but worse than Grose? Nope.

    • December 8, 2009 at 12:34 pm


      I will concede that it may be a bit over reaching to equate the depiction of Pelosi as Stalin by Choi to the racist email sent by Grose. But from the perspective of misbehaving public officials, they are pretty close.

  3. Dan Chmielewski
    December 8, 2009 at 11:13 am

    It’s Chris’s post Gustavo; not mine. Take it up with him.

  4. Slim Delgado
    December 8, 2009 at 1:44 pm

    Assuming Choi is a “right winger,” then please allow me, as one of “those” OC paleo-conservatives, to express my complete chagrin and sincere apology for his disrespectful and inexcusable action.

    This sickens me in the same way it sickened me when “my own” disgracefully booed Susan Estrich some months back as an invited speaker at the Ronald Reagan Library. Nancy Reagan was so upset by such rudeness she sent Estrich flowers and a written apology, and Estrich later wrote a column remarking on Nancy’s gracious kindness.

    It’s easier for me to forgive such behavior when it comes from the left and is directed at the right than the other way round.

    Please allow me to address the following to my fellow Republicans: Come on you guys; whatever happened to modeling the civility and human decency of Kirk, Chambers, Friedman, Buckley, Reagan and Meese instead of a poseur like Wally George? Have you no shame?

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