Iowa City Council to consider removing TRC chair after she insulted county Supervisor

cigaretteman

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https://www.press-citizen.com/pictu...ity-hall-bruce-teague-geoff-fruin/7377424001/
The Iowa City Council will consider removing the new chair of the Ad Hoc Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Amel Ali, at its next meeting, weeks after the commission appointed her to the role.
Mayor Bruce Teague ended the City Council's work session Tuesday by asking whether a majority of Councilors wanted to discuss removing Ali at the next meeting, without citing any reason. At least three nodded their heads or said yes in response: Shawn Harmsen, Pauline Taylor and Megan Alter.
Less than an hour later, the reason the council might remove Ali became clear during a public comment session.
Johnson County Board of Supervisors Chair Royceann Porter was joined by several members of her organization, the Black Voices Project, and asked for Ali's removal after Porter said she received an anonymous note with a recording of a podcast. In the podcast, Ali allegedly called Porter and other community members a racist slur and made other inappropriate comments.
"She has called out a number of Black Voices Project members and other community leaders by name, using the most racist and offensive terms," Porter read from a statement.
Porter asked the city to make TRC Vice Chair Chastity Dillard the new chair so the commission could move forward. Porter then threatened to take matters into her own hands if the council did not give in to her demands.


"If you don't remove her soon, I'm telling you now, we will remove her," Porter said.
Later in the evening, the City Council published an agenda for a special session on Thursday at 9:30 a.m. in Iowa City Hall. The agenda has a single item: a motion to remove Ali from the commission.

An altercation in City Hall lobby, and an admission of wrongdoing by Amel Ali​


After Porter and others left the council chambers and went into the lobby of City Hall, a minor altercation occurred between her group and three TRC commissioners; Clifton Johnson, Daphney Daniel and Mohamed Traore.
The TRC commissioners approached her and attempted to talk about what just occurred. The conversation devolved and the two sides started yelling, but quickly separated. Porter left the building, shouting expletives and insulting the TRC.

Ali spoke during the City Council meeting and said she was wrong to make the comments on the podcast, saying they were "ill-considered and most of all were hurtful."

"Despite the call by (Teague) to have me resign, I cannot walk away and turn my back on the trust, hope and responsibilities entrusted to all of us on this commission," Ali said.

She said she thinks the comments were sent to Porter in order to disrupt the work that the TRC is doing to address what she said is the continuous harm that BIPOC communities experience, particularly after the murder of George Floyd and many other unarmed Black men by police.

Ali has sat on the commission since its inception and has recently led efforts to hire a facilitator to help it accomplish its goal to address systemic racism in Iowa City. She was appointed in July as the new chair after Traore resigned that position.

The comments made by Ali that Porter cited were from a subscription-based podcast called "Rock Hard Caucus." On the podcast, Ali insulted Porter and members of her organization, calling them "coons."
Porter sent a screenshot of the letter, signed “Yours, BVP member,” and screenshots of the titles of the two podcast episodes she received in the mail to the Press-Citizen, but said the episodes, titled "Sluggin' with Amel" and "The Tumultuous TRC" had recently been deleted online.
The word "coon" is wrought with a racist, yet complex, history in America.

The word was originally directed at Black people by white slaveowners, and picked up by racists in the years after slaves were freed.
In modern times, the word has been recycled as slang by members of the Black community to refer to other Black people who put down their own racial communities and act like white or European people to gain favor in those cultures instead of their own.
Ali clarified to the Press-Citizen that she called Porter this with the modern use of the word in mind. She said it was in reference to comments Porter made while she was chair of the TRC in February 2021, when Porter told commissioners that they could go talk to Black people, but she can go to white people "because they listen to me and have supported me 100."
 

Hawki97

HR Heisman
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Dec 16, 2001
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Is Royceann Porter actually a good administrator / supervisor - or is she more just a community rabble rouser? I really don't know as I don't keep a close eye on local politics and only read the headlines. Seems like whenever I hear her name she's always in the middle of something...going all the way back to her police review board days.
 
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lucas80

HR King
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Jan 30, 2008
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Is Royceann Porter actually a good administrator / supervisor - or is she more just a community rabble rouser? I really don't know as I don't keep a close eye on local politics and only read the headlines. Seems like whenever I hear her name she's always in the middle of something...going all the way back to her police review board days.
Hard to say. Nobody really hears about any competent administrating that she does because she’s always in the middle of some drama.
 
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Hawki97

HR Heisman
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Dec 16, 2001
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Iowa City, IA
Hard to say. Nobody really hears about any competent administrating that she does because she’s always in the middle of some drama.

Like I said, I don't pay attention beyond the headlines but this is definitely my impression. She needs a talk show with Carol Deprosse and Carol Dieterle on PATV.
 
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Jcchawk

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Oct 29, 2001
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Is Royceann Porter actually a good administrator / supervisor - or is she more just a community rabble rouser? I really don't know as I don't keep a close eye on local politics and only read the headlines. Seems like whenever I hear her name she's always in the middle of something...going all the way back to her police review board days.
Porter is a disgrace. I don't care what race she is.
 
Apr 22, 2022
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Sounds like much reckoning and Doing of The Work is occurring.

Nice that the article gives the history of the epithet. I've only ever heard black "activists" use that term against people they want to insult for "aiding whitey."
 
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Hawk and Awe

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Sep 15, 2012
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That article should be turned into a comic book… can’t believe all the gangs running around Iowa City