Whatcom County Councilmember, Satpal Sidhu, wrote a response email letter to Marlene Dawson on February 14th, 2017. Within Mr. Sidhu’ s letter he inserted a definition to his use of the word “your,” which he used throughout his letter to Ms. Dawson.
These are ‘your’ treaties (the word ‘your’ is used metaphorically for white, English speaking immigrants and so on…… Nothing personal!)
With Marlene’s permission, we published two versions of the email letter she received from Whatcom County Councilmember, Satpal Sidhu. The first letter is a PDF copy of the original email letter she received from Councilmember Sidhu. The second letter is a PDF copy which Liberty Road has revised and published using Councilmember Sidhu’ s, definition of the word your, which he used throughout his letter to Ms. Dawson. We published both versions of his letter to show the demeanor hidden within the original letter and fully convey the depth of meaning held within that letter; delivered to Ms. Dawson.Original Ltr from Sidhu Revised Sidhu Ltr to Dawson
Our question is does this letter concern you?
If you come before the County Council and speak publicly on an issue that involves you, does it matter what frame of reference our Councilmember’ s belief is? Are they are listening to you? Can they hear you?
Does Councilmember Sidhu understand who the 212,000 residents of Whatcom County are?
I am guessing, Councilmember Sidhu did not have a copy of Ms. Dawson’s ancestry, or DNA chart, when he wrote this email. He really has no idea if Ms. Dawson’s ancestors came over on the Mayflower in 1620 as white, English speaking colonists, or came from Ireland in 1740 as white, Irish speaking indentured servants escaping the potato famine, or came from Russia as white, German speaking immigrants at the turn of the 20th Century as the Czarist monarchy began to fail, or sailed here as white, Finnish and Norwegian speaking tradesmen in search of a place to earn a living. If you take out the word white, all residents of Whatcom County can probably trace their families’ immigration here to the multitude of reasons that have blended into the American story.
Does Mr. Sidhu’ s language show someone who is capable of representing the interests of everyone who lives, works, and plays in our community?
Councilmember Sidhu’ s understanding of the people of Whatcom County appears to be narrow bands based on origins. One wonders about Councilmember Sidhu, as he lumps all white people into one bag of aggressive, killing machines, who appointed Indian agents to steal children from their homes, and voted in all the ills of the last 300 years of North American history. When you read American history you find that all nations were here, Northern European, African, Asian, American Natives, a melting pot of the human race; making both good and bad decisions. With these old-fashioned, narrow ideas set so firmly, can Councilmember Sidhu see us for who we are today? The one thing we all hold in common is we were travelers, we came from somewhere else, even those we call Native. We all traveled here, settled here, and we love this place.
Councilmember Sidhu made this promise, As a Councilmember, I would like to see healthy debate and careful listening to diverse views on issues before making any decision. His email letter to Ms. Dawson does not keep that promise. The only way to accomplish this is to leave grudges of the past behind and deal with the realities of the new generations of today.