Open letter to the citizens of Selma

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 22, 2007

To the Editor:

Several years ago, the citizens of Selma, like other Americans anxiously anticipated the start of a new millennium. Although many feared that this change in time would be a devastating end; the year 2000 emerged without any major disaster and we began a transition into a new era.

For Selma, this transition was even greater, because the citizens of Selma also made a significant political change after 40 years.

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The year 2000 marked a momentous event in Selma with the election of Mayor Perkins.

For many of us, this was indeed a new era; one where many of the old political policies would cease and new ideas, hope and the building of a new city would begin.

Imagine the idea of the mayor, who would develop and implement a public city budget and public forums and council meetings where the business of operating the city is the main goal.

Imagine the idea of bringing national and global resources in that it would move our city to the forefront of economic change.

Imagine the vision and hope that Mayor Perkins had in 2000 and still has for Selma; the goals, the economic development plans; new educational programs and facilities and other multi-leveled strategic plans to move Selma forward.

But how are we to imagine and build a new city for the new era, when Selma’s council meetings, politicians and some leaders are emerged in inconsequential fights, which are embedded in personal agendas or issues?

I appeal to Mayor Perkins to move forward in spite of iniquitous criticism, and fear of some to move beyond a past where mediocre politics were in the forefront as the future of Selma dwindled into a state of economic ash.

I also urge the citizens of Selma to recognize our potential to be a great city and to join Mayor Perkins’ efforts to move Selma to new heights.

Rose Wilkins

Atlanta, Ga.