You have to wonder sometimes whether Anchorage’s news media are asleep at the switch or whether their failure to report the news goes to something deeper.
Take, for instance, Assembly Chairman Felix Rivera’s assertion there are too many white males in public office.
Rivera, an Hispanic gay Assembly member, made the comment during an Alaska Black Caucus Facebook page forum.
“I really think our political establishments need to get over this idea that only a certain typecast of individual can run for office, because when you do that, you’re typically going to go to someone who is white and someone who is male, and we need to get beyond that very rigid thinking in our political establishments,” he said.
That racially tinged nonsense was reported by MustReadAlaska.com. The rest of the city’s media? Crickets. One might think when the chairman of a city’s primary legislating body says such a ridiculous thing it might dutifully be reported by the news media as news. Not here.
As the website points out, Rivera’s statement was especially “curious because the Anchorage Assembly of 11 has at least two Hispanics, one Alaska Native, and several gay and lesbian members, some whom are public about their sexual preference, others who are not. The Assembly also has at least two Jewish members, and one veteran.”
The idea of public officials employing racism ostensibly in the pursuit of racial equity is not only silly and self-defeating, it is dangerous. Stirring racial prejudice, especially from positions of authority, can carry heavy consequences.
Of course, as a member of the public, you need know when a public official resorts to such a thing, but, frankly, in Anchorage the odds are against you.