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Letter: Council should drop ‘Smallsbury’ ways

Witnessing last Tuesday’s City Council meeting was disturbing but not surprising. No, it was not all about race; it was about deeply embedded biases, elitism, class discrimination, disenfranchisement and lots of microaggressions.

Statements were made by some council members that if, in the past, they personally could not afford or chose not to allocate their own personal leisure funds to this trip, they decided not to attend.

Did I misread their assumptions that Mayor Heggins could not afford to pay for this job-related trip? Would this same assumption have been made had a different person occupied that seat? Would it have been addressed in a public setting? I doubt it, but I applaud her transparency.

The implication made by a council member that providing Heggins with some financial support would eventually lead her down the same morally irresponsible path as Nashville’s mayor, Megan Barry, was at its best, gender biased and racist; at its worst, an unwarranted personal affront.

This is about a black woman asking a question and then being vilified for not continuing to do the same as it’s always been done. She opened a conversation that unveiled some very nasty truths about our city, but this is our opportunity to look at these topics deeply and dimensionally.

All socially controversial issues aside, a very practical question was posed by Dr. Regina Dancy: What percentage of the line item of the budget, would the $1,060.60 travel expenditure be? Our mayor was invited on this trip to be a representative of our community, which is why the majority of us elected her. Let’s ditch the “Smallsbury” moniker for a Salisbury that reaches across an ocean to envision a brighter future for all of us.

— Merry Overholser

Salisbury

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