, Salem, MA

January 15, 2013

Letter: Disgusted by backlash against councilor

The Salem News

---- — To the editor:

When we moved to Salem 20 years ago, the place was, frankly, kind of sad. It seemed as if Salem had long before seen its “Golden Age” and was mired in a hokey recast of history. However, the past eight years or so have been a renaissance of new growth, new ideas, new residents, new businesses, restaurants, arts and a renewed sense of vibrancy that have made us and our family enthused and proud to call Salem home.

However, we are discouraged and dismayed by the behavior of some of our fellow citizens. Despite the recent difficulties in electing the newest member of the City Council, we never questioned the integrity of the councilors who cast votes. However, the mean-spirited comments displayed publicly and posted online against our Ward 1 councilor because of his votes has disgusted us and others who recognize the contributions of our elected officials and the personal sacrifices that each makes.

We should instead be thanking our councilor for his willingness to serve, to grapple with difficult decisions and to cast courageous votes that may put him at odds with some of his constituents. We regret the actions of those who have insulted the integrity of our councilor and any other who may have been the recipient of these petty insults. It is the elected leadership in Salem that has made our city the energized and attractive destination to live and visit that it has become.

Julie Whitlow

Olga Merchan