Member of the reality-based community of progressive (not anonymous) Massachusetts blogs
The first one you can read on gerrynutterlowell.com: Statement from Mayor Patrick Murphy
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.
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