As a person who has lived, worked and voted in Portland for 10 years, I have never seen anything so flagrantly biased in your newspaper as the Oct. 10 article by Randy Billings raising an alarm about “divisive politics.” (“Toxic politics taking toll on Portland’s public servants“)

There is a certain school of politics that elevates “civil discourse” above meaningful political work and progress. The complaints and white fragility of the civil servants quoted in the article are a distraction from the fact that many, if not most, Portlanders feel that said politicians are not doing their jobs.

Businesses and older, white citizens have far more power in this city than the vast majority of the people who work here. Our only power is our voice and our vote. If we are unable to afford homes in the city with the pay we receive while working here, what tone are we expected to take? When we lose our homes and are unable to access adequate resources, how quiet and polite are we expected to be? And never mind that “divisive politics” has quickly become a racist dog whistle for those who don’t want to have challenging conversations about race and inequity.

A politician who cannot endure the anger of citizens and peers should find a new hobby. Or, perhaps, they could actually listen to the words they find so divisive.

Adam King

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