YOUR VIEWS | ADC Needs New Leadership

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To the editor:

On May 5 of 2009, we experienced a historic election in Alexandria. For the very first time, we elected an African-American woman to the City Council who is not a Democrat. She is new to our city. She is a young, single woman, with great and new ideas minus political baggage. She has demonstrated greater concern for young Alexandrians through her community involvement than many people who have lived here for decades. We are talking about City Councilwoman-elect Alicia Hughes.

While we are not surprised at the citizens of Alexandria for embracing her and giving her a chance to prove herself as a good public servant, as a lifelong Alexandria Democrat, we are personally ashamed of the leadership of the Alexandria Democratic Committee and the party cronies who seek to punish and humiliate Alicia for the crime of winning a local election. Go find a new hobby.

Instead of focusing on what Democrats have done to lose our way, regrouping and learning lessons of what not to do next time, our ineffective leadership seeks only to try to smear Alicia Hughes name. If anyone thought that she was unfit to serve, they should have made that point before we voted.

Thats the appropriate time to wage a campaign and throw dirt if you think you have it. We have had our election now and picked our people. The results have been certified. It is time to get on with governing, with bringing everybody together to make Alexandria a better place.

There are serious problems going on in this city. By trying to tear down Alicia Hughes, the leadership of the ADC is not helping to solve our problems. Instead, their behavior is dividing us.

The ADC needs new leadership.

Clearly, Alicias crime is being black, winning a seat on City Council and not asking permission to run from people who think they own Alexandria. Clearly, they dont and we must stand up and ignore them. If you want to know who these people are, just pay attention to the sore losers who are contesting her voter registration, trying to get the Commonwealths Attorney to prosecute her and saying mean things about her around town before she has taken a single vote on Council. Add to that list the family members of losing candidates and a losing candidate quoted in the paper.

I will not call names, but I promise you that Alicia is not the first non-perfect politician in Alexandria and she will not be the last. Unfortunately, I only remember Alexandria Democratic Party leadership collectively ganging up on and trying to wage media campaigns against our less than perfect black leaders. ADC, black people make up a large part of the Democratic base in this city and we do not take kindly to you trying to tear down our leaders. If you continue trying to hurt our newly-elected black city councilwoman, more than anything else, you will hurt the Alexandria Democratic Party, because as a race of people, we do not forget. For your information, there are far more African-American Democrats that vote than the ones who show up at ADC meetings and these people have minds of their own.

Dorothy Turner
President,
Alexandria Black and Hispanic Concerned Women

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