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April 5, 2013

Two Mayor Murphy Memos in Four Days

by at 5:00 pm.

The first one you can read on gerrynutterlowell.com: Statement from Mayor Patrick Murphy

The second memo, as released:


To: City Councilors
From: Mayor Patrick Murphy
RE: Substitute motion of April 2nd 2013 by C. Lorrey to “request the Mayor meet with members of the Greek Community to discuss and settle matters by way of an apology.”

I understand that my statement of last Tuesday morning had not been seen by all the councilors in time for Tuesday night’s meeting. I would have preferred to address these issues in person last week, but circumstances which are private precluded me from doing so. Nonetheless I would, in response to this motion, refer you to the relevant passage of that statement:

“As it has been my honor to represent you both as a councilor and now mayor, I have sought to make the most of your trust in me. As a fellow human being, I have come up short again and again. Mostly I am not interested in the pomp of the office or in becoming a great politician, but have been focused instead on becoming a better policymaker. Having endured a lot of nonsense over the last year, I certainly regret times where I might have been outspoken about matters not directly related to policy. I have a straightforward style that I should not have let stray from what matters most. Many who know me can also understand that while I take my job very seriously, I try not to take myself too seriously and if, in the latter case, my actions or comments have offended any of you, I sincerely apologize.

Thankfully, Spring is here. The Lenten season has only recently come to an end. And in that spirit of forgiveness and renewal, the city needs us to move on to more important issues than these. We are part of this larger family, where we must respect and resolve differences in order to move forward.”

While I understand that no ethnic community is homogeneous in thought or philosophy, I wish to specifically extend this apology to members of the Greek community who took offense to the use of a bust of Pericles in a poorly conceived joke poking fun at a falsely reported story. I had not considered the impact on some who might not have even been privy to the Sun’s controversy, and should not have given any fuel to its fire. I in no way intended to make light of the contributions of Greeks to life in Lowell and this country, nor did I seek to denigrate the importance of Pericles in our collective traditions. In fact, I have celebrated them, ending my inaugural speech as mayor with a quote from the Athenian oath during the time of Pericles: “we will transmit this City, not only not less, but greater and more beautiful than it was transmitted to us.”

As always, I have an open door policy at City Hall for those who wish to more fully discuss their concerns, either during office hours on every Tuesday from 2pm until the Council meeting or by appointment at a more convenient time. Throughout my term, I have used this time to listen to resident issues and attempt to find suitable resolutions. I can see no reason that this issue cannot be resolved in the same respectful manner.

I feel Mayor Murphy has met the obligation of C.Lorrey’s substitute motion. His address is specific to the Greek community and he has made himself available to any and all that should wish to meet with him, face to face. Just as Murphy has labored to open City Hall to more residents, Mayor Murphy has invited a heartfelt dialogue into his office.

11 Responses to “Two Mayor Murphy Memos in Four Days”

  1. James O. Says:

    As one of the 18 speakers who supported Mayor Murphy on Tuesday, seeing this memo really makes me all the more happy that I did so. He truly did not let us down. While I will admit I, myself, was somewhat uneasy with the idea of the council negotiating with a person who was not present, Patrick had pledged to abide by the council’s decision, and this message proves he is willing to work with his fellow councilors and is a man of his word. He was sincere in expressing remorse for the hurt this situation has caused, and directly addressed and acknowledged the particular interests of the Greek community, which I am so proud to consider myself a part of. Of course, I can only represent myself as an individual Lowellian, but I personally appreciate that he took the time to explain the context of his actions, because I do think when one understands what he was trying to get at, you’ll see his intentions were never to hurt anyone. This memo also speaks to the inclusive nature of the entirety of Patrick Murphy’s public efforts, from his first campaign all the way through to today. I admire that he opens his doors to anyone who may have issues with him, his actions, or his decisions. That, in a nut shell, is why I am a proud supporter of Patrick Murphy, he sincerely believes all in Lowell deserve an equal voice and a seat at the table. This is such a great step towards what everyone who showed up at City Hall on Tuesday, on both sides, seemed to want–For us all to heal and move on and continue to make great progress and do good work in the city that we all share and we all love.

  2. Tax Payer Says:

    Only cowards make statements on paper and not in person his true colors have shown, if he could have just apologized weeks ago this would be over buy yet this saga can’t end he makes everything so difficult. This has nothing to with reaching out to Lowellians and the suporters he has. Its about being a man apologizing and move. Say it in public and it is over not on a Blog and piece of paper! Be a man Murphy

  3. Shaughnessy Says:

    I admire men today for choosing to take time away from their jobs to provide support to their newborn children and post-natal wives. Enjoy this unique and valuable time with your new family Mayor Murphy and know that a majority of Lowellians support you and wouldn’t want you to add such undue stress to your life at this most exciting and new chapter of it. Congratulations!

  4. Jack Says:

    @Shaughnessy The “data dink” in me is wishing that Murphy was running again, so that I could measure his support. Which, btw, increased between 2009 & 2011. I would love to see how such kerfuffle’s effect votes. As for the “family first” element, I find it odd that so many loud voices, ones that are normally very clannish regarding family and friends, have just gone blind.

    @Tax Payer Murphy WILL meet ‘face to face’ with individuals or groups, on their terms. As a blue collar working man and a new father, he has specified his office hours and made allowances for mutually agreeable appointments. This should suffice for anyone with the slightest objectivity.

    As for “cowardly,” ‘Tax Payer,’ public officials can make choices that are more or less ‘heroic.’ But, by virtue of our style of American politics, cowards just don’t make it past the signature gathering portal into elected politics.

    Lastly, by stressing what Murphy, ‘coulda, shoulda, woulda,’ you are moving the goal posts, so that Murphy can never complete the goal. Bogus on your part.

  5. Mimi Says:

    Tax Payer: I think Mayor Murphy should fly to Athens, stand in the middle of Syntagma Square and shout out “I am sorry.”

    Would that satisfy you? I do not think so. You and others like you just want to continue the bashing.

  6. ax41 Says:

    The data is inadequate in my view to warrant the conclusion that Mayor Murphy’s support increased between 2009 and 2011.
    In 2009 , he finished 8th with 4,860 votes or roughly 36% of the turnout.Participation declined in 2011 by 3,500 or so. Mayor Murphy got 3,732 votes. His percentage of turnout rose to about 37.5% and he was 4th.When the actual vote drops by 1,128 ,it is difficult to see how support increased.

  7. Publius Says:

    Didn’t the city council’s substitute motion state the the mayor was to “meet” with Greek commmunity leaders?

    Another written letter does not reach the “meet” requirement.

    Opening the already open door of office hours does not reach the “meet requirement”. By making the Greek community to come to him, the Mayor again fails to meet the standards set by the City Council motion. It was clear from the motion that the mayor was supposed to reach out to the Greek community. By Mayor Murphy’s most recent actions, he is clearly making the mountain come to Mohammed. Should such arrogance be tolerated?

  8. Old Timer Says:

    I don’t want to publicly post but Just Who is The Greek Community. I know many Greek people but who should the Mayor meet with? I think it was a good idea to invite whoever wants a personal apology to come to the Mayor’s office. Thanks for reading my thoughts.

  9. Jack Says:

    @ax41 That’s why I wanted to see his vote totals for another cycle. The spacing between finishes was so tight, it was a stretch to discern voter preference. That’s why Elliott claiming some sort of victory with a 2nd place finish was so laughable. Yet, that didn’t stop him or his cheerleaders.

    Though Murphy, got 5 very important votes. And, we know the rest of the story.

    @Publius Please refer to Mimi’s response to Tax Payer (#5)

  10. Lynne Says:

    Pretty much what Old Timer said. Open invite to his office is adhering to the letter of what was a very poor, very un-motion-like (illegal? certainly not enforceable) motion. (Don’t get me started on that.) Just who is he supposed to meet with? Does he have a list of all the Greek LOWELLIANS who are offended? Just how many of them are there? If he listed a day and time of his own choosing, people’d be complaining he was *dictating* the terms of the meeting.

    You took your pound of flesh, pat yourselves on the back, and stop acting like children.

  11. Publius Says:

    In resposne to Jack #9

    Maybe if Murphy named his son Pericles - that would calm the swells.

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