Earlier this year we had the example of Racism We Can Believe InÂ 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 thatÂ included this picture with a heading that read, â€œNo Easter Egg hunt this year.â€
An African-AmericanÂ constituent who received the e-mail was offended by it’s content.
â€œI think heâ€™s saying that since thereâ€™s a black president, there will be no need to hunt for eggs since theyâ€™re growing watermelons in the front yard this year,â€ [Keyanus] Price wrote.
She responded to the e-mail with: â€œHey, thatâ€™s not nice at all. Not all black people like watermelonâ€¦ you should know better than that.â€
Grose replied: â€œThe way things are today, you gotta laugh every now and then. I wanna see the coloring contests.â€
As a result of his conduct, Grose resigned from his position as Mayor and member of the City Council.
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 heÂ is expected to showÂ 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:
While the Irvine City Council is officially non-partisan, Council member Steven ChoiÂ 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.