Boston Mayor Michelle Wu fires back at critics of ‘electeds of color’ holiday party


At the annual Martin Luther King Jr. memorial breakfast, Boston Mayor Michelle Wu addressed the criticism she received for hosting a holiday party exclusively for “electeds of color” last month.

Wu’s speech: On Monday, Wu accused critics of spreading misinformation and expressed frustration with those opposing discussions on race and diversity.

“As we stare down this presidential election year, all signs are that it will take every ounce of our stamina to move forward and not backward,” Wu said, according to WBUR. “I am tired of those fearmongers and mob baiters who fan the flames and call for unity. Viral outrage ricocheted internationally, as those who had never before cared about representation railed against this as exclusionary. They say ‘Don't divide us,’ when they really mean, ‘Don't defy us.’”

Wu emphasized the need for concrete action to address disparities, highlighting the broader push of people to maintain the status quo, citing efforts to ban books and distort historical narratives. She noted the importance of commitment to King's legacy through tangible efforts for justice.

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The party issue: The “Electeds of Color” holiday party, organized by an affinity group representing officials of color, drew attention after an email invitation mishap. While attendees supported the party's purpose, other councilors, including outgoing Councilor Frank Baker, deemed it divisive, expressing concern about its potential impact on a historically infighting council.

Wu’s defense: However, Wu, the first female and Asian American mayor of Boston, defended the party, highlighting its decade-long tradition celebrating “identity, culture, and heritage.” She emphasized the city's commitment to inclusive celebrations, inviting the entire council and colleagues to various holiday events, aiming to embrace diverse communities and values.

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