Don’t reduce people to their skin color | Letter to the editor

To the editor:

A letter was written to you concerning Wayne Roth’s suitability to serve on the Bainbridge Island City Council. In the opinion of the writer, because Wayne is a “middle class white guy,” he should not serve a second term. The writer asserts that her candidate is a better choice because she would bring diversity to the council.

While I think the letter writer means well, I imagine the candidate she is supporting would rather be judged by her abilities, rather than her ethnicity. As a first-generation woman of color who grew up in a time and place very unforgiving of racial and cultural differences, I object to a world view that reduces people to the color of their skin. Any color. While Bainbridge has been my refuge, its history shows how easy it is to disenfranchise an entire group of citizens based on ethnicity.

Civil discourse followed by exercising one’s right to vote leads to good government. Name-calling without voting does not. As his spouse of 38 years, I am happy to now be middle class, which allows us to enjoy this beautiful island.

Wayne looks forward to interacting with voters at the upcoming public forums. Experience in government and management, familiarity with the island, connections both on the island and in county and regional organizations, long-time volunteerism, empathy, kindness and willingness to consider all sides of an issue, are hallmarks of Wayne’s dedication to his work with the council.

KATHLEEN J. ALCALÁ

Bainbridge Island

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