I received a text this morning at 9:52 from Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin, responding to my earlier post about the children from Central America:
Brad, Thank you for speaking up for the unaccompanied minors/children. I plan to take a formal position and to ask council to join me too. Steve
I responded that that sounded to me like a fine idea.
I was reminded of what happened 10 years ago, when a tide of resistance in Cayce rose up against the Somali Bantu moving here, and then-Columbia Mayor Bob Coble made it clear that they would be welcome in Columbia.
I have this vivid image in my mind — which unfortunately, I’ve been unable to find on the web — of Mayor Bob embracing the father of a Bantu family arriving at the airport, with the rest of the family standing by.
What a great message that was, and it washed away the earlier, uglier impression that our community had given.
It would be great to see the city of Columbia similarly distance itself from our governor’s ungracious reaction.
I hope the council can see its way clear to do just that.