Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick

The dirty little secret about America’s big city black mayors over the past 40 years is that collectively their leadership record has been mediocre at best, pathological at worse. Their failure has been the dysfunction of liberalism and the entire civil rights movement from MLK on down – they put too much emphasis on white guilt and no emphasis on black responsibility. To this day, the consequences for black people across America have been apocalyptic.

Since the early 1970s, Detroit has had three black mayors, all liberal Democrats – Coleman A. Young (1974-94), Dennis Archer (1994-2001) and Kwame Kilpatrick (2001-present). If you think I write from hyperbole, just take a dispassionate look at Detroit, the ghettos, barrios, the projects, drugs, gang warfare, waste, fraud and abuse infesting our big cities across America for the past four decades. The grand dragon of the KKK himself couldn’t have envisioned a more Faustian conspiracy against black people and their own vested interests.

Regarding the nominee for the “pathological” category is Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, “America’s first hip-hop mayor.” In a blockbuster series of news articles, text messages and videos first published Jan. 23 by the Detroit Free Press titled, “Mayor Kilpatrick, chief of staff lied under oath, text messages show,” the paper features in excruciating detail how the chief executive for the city of Detroit and his chief of staff/concubine, Christine Beatty, repeatedly lied under oath.

I first wrote about this institutional incompetence and crisis of leadership happening to Detroit, the city of my birth, in a column titled, “I remember Detroit.”

Kilpatrick and Beatty could face perjury charges regarding their longstanding affair and their part in the firing of police officer/bodyguard Harold Nelthrope, deputy police chief and head of internal affairs Gary Brown and a subsequent lawsuit by former police officer/bodyguard Walt Harris, during the whistleblower case in the summer of August 2007 – a lawsuit that cost the already cash-strapped city of Detroit over $9 million in punitive and compensatory damages.

A recent study commissioned by the Detroit Free Press demonstrated that with $9 million, taxpayers of Detroit could have hired:

  • 143 firefighters

  • 126 police officers
  • created 94 city parks
  • demolished 1,200 dilapidated homes

This, in a city where large sections of Detroit look like riot-torn Nairobi, Kenya, the Gaza Strip or war-torn Beirut, Lebanon.

According to the Detroit Free Press, the text messages show Beatty recalling the “decision that we made to fire Gary Brown.” The newspaper examined over 14,000 text messages on Beatty’s city-issued pager. The exchanges, which the Free Press obtained after the trial, cover two months each in 2002 and 2003.

The Kilpatrick-Beatty relationship and Brown’s dismissal were central to the whistleblower suit filed by Brown and Nelthrope. The two cops accused Kilpatrick of retaliating against them because of their roles in an internal affairs investigation of the mayor’s security team – a probe that potentially could have exposed the affair.

The text messages cover a range of issues from mundane city business to political rumors to the latest episode of “American Idol.” Kilpatrick and Beatty, both 37, were prolific in their frequent personal dialogue, including romantic comments:

“I’m madly in love with you,” Kilpatrick wrote on Oct. 3, 2002. “I hope you feel that way for a long time,” Beatty answered. “In case you haven’t noticed, I am madly in love with you, too!” Other texts contain sexual content, like this exchange on April 8, 2003:

Beatty: “And, did you miss me, sexually?”

Kilpatrick: “Hell yeah! You couldn’t tell. I want some more. ”

At the whistleblower trial last summer, the mayor and Beatty repeatedly denied a romantic relationship. Both were married at the time of the text messages; Beatty later divorced. Plaintiff’s attorney Michael Stefani asked Beatty the following question when she was on the stand Aug. 28, 2007: “During the time period 2001 to 2003, were you and Mayor Kilpatrick either romantically or intimately involved with each other?” Rolling her eyes, Beatty answered: “No.” Kilpatrick testified for more than three hours the next day. Stefani asked him: “Mayor Kilpatrick, during 2002 and 2003, were you romantically involved with Christine Beatty?” Kilpatrick’s response: “No.” That’s lying under oath. That’s perjury.

The perjury charges would be brought by Wayne County prosecutor Kim Worthy. However, Worthy has a spotty record on upholding the rule of law and has been rumored to be complicit with the Kilpatrick administration in covering up a number of high-profile cases, including the case regarding the murder of Tamara “Strawberry” Greene, the exotic dancer present at a wild party Mayor Kilpatrick gave in 2002 at the Manoogian mansion.

On April 30, 2003, the very day Gary Brown came out with his report about the mayor’s Manoogian mansion party, Greene was viciously gunned down outside her home in a drive-by shooting. Another dancer at the “party” was later tracked down and killed in Atlanta, Ga. Mayor Kilpatrick has repeatedly said that “the party never happened” and arrogantly called the allegations of a party “an urban legend.”

Prosecutor Worthy has sat on these murder cases for five years with no trial date set. Where are the feds on this case? Since one of the murders crossed state lines, the feds now have jurisdiction to investigate these cases, but they are MIA.

Because of this travesty of justice, the 14-year-old son of Tamara Greene has recently filed a $150 million wrongful death civil lawsuit against Kilpatrick, Police Chief Ella Bully Cummings, Beatty and other Detroit officials that allegedly obstructed justice regarding this case.

On Jan. 25, Worthy, in a 45 second press conference, was defiant. She took no questions and flatly said that her office would “investigate” the perjury allegations, but would “take her time” and “would not be rushed by anyone.”

As I and many others predicted, mayor Kilpatrick has taken a page from the Clinton/Lewinsky playbook – throw the girl to the wolves (here, Christine Beatty), which was exactly what the mayor did on Jan. 28 (“Beatty quits city post”).

Following a week of hiding from the media, on Wednesday, the mayor staged an appearance at his church and tried to rehabilitate himself in front of a bunch of preachers. He dragged out his humiliated wife in subzero weather and feigned remorse, not for violating his wedding vows and wantonly abusing his executive office, but for getting caught.

Absent a recall effort by the citizens of Detroit, Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick can freely continue to destroy a once-proud city that 100 years ago was called, “The Paris of America” and 65 years ago was called, “The arsenal of democracy,” and run it into the abyss of a first-class ghetto.

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