A Letter to the UW Faculty About Sawant

Kshama Sawant
Faculty tend to avoid demagogues, an avoidance that McCarthy, Hitler, Huey Long, and the Tea Party have shown is very risky.  
Now Kshama Sawant is running a very well funded campaign for reelection to the Seattle City Council from our neighborhood, District 3.   My wife and I voted for Kshama in her first election  because of her campaign for the $15 minimum wage.  That campaign was a great success.  Since then she  has shown herself to belong to that self serving community of political demagogues .  Her District 3 rally for this Saturday features national leaders .. people representing the Bolshevik like “Socialist Alernative” party and BDS.  There is not much here that “looks like” the people of “her” district.
I doubt that many UW faculty agree with Sawant’s adamant support for anti-Israel BDS or her support for a Bolshevik style takeover of Boeing.  Sawant is running as a self described Trotskyite with an agenda that has little to do with the issues of gentrification  and diversity that face all neighborhoods around the UW.  Her followers’ willingness to emulate the Bolsheviks by packing public meetings, has made real discussions nearly impossible.
As another example, this  weekend Kshama  is hosting  a fund raising rally in New York!   Sharing her platform will be the socialist candidate for Governor of New York and a former NY Times writer whose support for George Bush’s claim that Saddam Hussein was hosting el Quaeda in Iraq is among the worst journalistic scandals of that era.
The other candidates here in Seattle’s District 3 are true progressives like Pam Banks and Rod Hearn (the head of the Urban League and the leader  of the gay marriage movement).  In typical Bolshevik style, Sawant has attacked Pam and Rod as corporate tools, while she lives comfortably on her husband’s Microsoft salary.   While I am positive that many of our faculty will be on the side of  Sawant,   I also suspect that these colleagues are not aware that her  use of Trotskyite/Bolshevik perversions of democracy  made it impossible to have serious discussions when she filled a meeting at Mt. Zion Baptist church wth supporters largely from outside of District 3.
Our home is in  Seattle’s District 3, a few streets north of Mt. Zion Baptist.   This neighborhood represents a major part of the housing available for UW faculty and staff.  District 3 includes Montlake, Capitol Hill, the Central District, major religious institutions for the Catholic Church, the Episcopal Church, several  African-American churches, the Greek Orthodox community and the Jewish community.   For those of us interested in diversity, District 3 has a unique role with its long history of being the home to  different ethnic groups, Seattle’s art community, and Seattle’s gay community.  Of course District 3 is also the location of the official home of the UW President.
Barbara and I were especially happy to be living in a racially integrated community where our kids could benefit from going to integrated schools. Now we live in a very wealthy neighborhood where most of the African American community has fled. Apartheid works better here than it does in Capetown!
All of this might of no interest to the UW except that Kshama Sawant has shown little  interest in  gentrification and the effective Apartheid of Seattle.   With prices for studio apartments ranging to $1850, the need for more moderate income housing, and transportation to and from the UW should be obvious.

Whatever progressive sympathies faculty have, I suggest the UW should be very worried about Kashma Sawant and pay attention to the City Council race in Seattle’s District 3.  

A forum with all the candidates  will be held Mon, Jun 8, 7:00 PM at the Bush School Auditorium, 3400 E Harrison St, Seattle, WA 98112

 I hope very much that my colleagues will attend this forum on June 8!

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