Gene Locke’s Legacy, The Bob Lanier Chapter

Sunday’s Houston Chronicle called for Gene Locke to take a stronger stance than the one he’s taken against what they term the politics of discrimination and bigotry.  Read the editorial here, but this excerpt bears repeating:

Houston deserves better. Our city has a well-earned reputation for tolerance and openness. We don’t need inflammatory appeals to folks’ worst instincts.

We’ve been here before. In 1997 a small-minded ballot initiative would have ended the city’s affirmative action program that helped minority and women contractors. Mayor Bob Lanier went on the air in an ad that bluntly stated his opposition to a proposal that would “turn back the clock to the days when guys who look like me got all the city’s business.”

Lanier couldn’t have been more clear: Discrimination is just not right.

It was a powerful moment of leadership. The referendum went down to defeat, and news outlets around the country marveled that a “wealthy white developer” had taken the lead on affirmative action.

It’s time for another such moment of leadership.

Gene Locke served as City Attorney under Mayor Bob, and Locke’s campaign website claims that Lanier has lobbied Locke to run for mayor for “about a dozen years.”

I’m very curious about the Chron picking that particular incident to illustrate our city’s legacy of open-mindedness and diversity.  Is the Chron’s editorial a call for Bob Lanier to step up like he did in 1997? A challenge for him to criticize his candidate for not reacting strongly enough?

Something else entirely?

Is it a call for some other “wealthy white developer” to step up for Annise?

Anyone have any ideas about any wealthy white developers currently serving as mayors of large metropolitan areas who might be willing and able to stand up for Annise and call out the hate-mongering of Locke, Hotze, and others?



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