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Mayor Williams and the 5 Stages of Grief
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By Greer Firestone

- Playwright/actor in 1 man First Person Multi Media Living History show THE DuPONT STORY  A FAMILY A COMPANY

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By Greer Firestone
May 16, 2013 12:56 p.m.



One might hazard a crazy guess and posit that it all has not gone the merry way that Wilmington Mayor Williams envisioned 5 months ago when he took office.

                As you may know, there are five stages of grief: denial and Isolation, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. I suggest the good Mayor is navigating through them as we speak.

DENIAL AND ISOLATION

                Williams, a former city police officer, guaranteed that he would no longer 'hug thugs' and there would be a measurable decrease in crime after his first six months of office. Well, only a month more to go and, quite literally, the jury is still out on any improvement. (Last month's PARENTING MAGAZINE listed Wilmington as the most dangerous city in America with our population base.) The city canceled their annual subscription after that article hit. Seriously though, residents must hold his feet to the fire a month from now on those fightin' words echoing from his campaign.

                Mr. Williams is isolating himself from the public with his omnipresent body guard detail. For 12 years former Mayor Baker strolled around the city by his lonesome. I imagine Baker is rolling his eyes on that one. Williams can spin it all he wants, but these officers should be on the street doing the job they were trained to do. Babysitting was not a required course.

ANGER

                Mr. Williams on Wednesday threatened to veto the multi-million dollar budget on a relative piddling $250,000. line item.  The Mayor pronounced that there would be a violation of separation of powers over this issue. Separation of powers, huh? This is not the Continental Congress. Williams created a controversy when there did not need to be one. City Council President Theo Gregory retorted, "You can't be a dictator!" The council is now so fired up they may have sufficient votes to override Williams' veto should it come to that. Strong arming the council right is not a suggested way of resolving issues responsibly. One would hope that Mr. Williams would channel his anger in the proper arena, i.e. the above mentioned streets to reduce crime.

BARGAINING

                This stage has not been broached  :-(

DEPRESSION

                The citizens are the ones depressed.  Mr. Williams has not reached that stage, considering the perception we have of him is that he is "God's Gift".  And what must corporate leaders - such as Ellen Kullman of DuPont Co - think of this inability to communicate and negotiate so early in Williams' term. What does it do for the arts organizations, retailers on Market Street and those considering moving to downtown? The perception that Wilmington is not safe is still with us. We need calm and considerate people in office to lead us to be a World Class city, not a World Class kindergarten. The discord in the government offices effects all of us statewide.  We ALL have a reason to be depressed.

ACCEPTANCE

                At this point, refer to the words of the BARGAINING stage. In any event, Wilmingtonians cannot ACCEPT this 'my way or the highway' attitude.  



There is one saving grace, however. Mayor Williams cannot send Theo Gregory or the council members to the gulag.

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