Hall Monitor 

Forgive or Forget

Former Mayor Tom Potter, former State Senator Avel Gordly, and (hopefully soon-to-be former) Willamette Week Editor Mark Z(zz)usman have now all signed on in support of the effort to recall Mayor Sam Adams.

Potter told the Oregonian his support of the recall was about "the character of our city." Potter said, "There's this sort of a preoccupation with the scandal that Sam has created," apparently unaware of the irony that most people's preoccupation was dwindling before he awoke from his nap to rekindle it.

Gordly focused on Breedlove: "I kept thinking about that young man and I was troubled that Sam was a corrupting influence in this young man's life," she said. Was that before or after Breedlove's felony conviction for shoplifting, I wonder?

Meanwhile the big Zzz wrote a page-and-a-half-long edi-borial urging citizens to support the recall "not to punish, and not out of rancor; rather, to help"...umm... help continue this cycle of Sam stories, so they can continue to sell advertising? No, he wrote: "to get our city back on track."

Call me Mr. Charitable, but I don't need to watch the recall fail before I decide that it's not in Portland's best interest. I think it's time to forgive Adams—or at least put his behavior behind us. Yes, I was angry with the mayor for the repeated lies he told this newspaper. And yes, I suppose I was upset that the mayor had apparently asked the young man to lie about their affair. But two weeks ago, I realized I've forgiven Sam Adams, even for his most serious transgressions. The way I figure it: Life is too short.

Now I feel better! No longer do I wake up distracted by a nagging grudge. I feel a lightness in my step that's been lacking these last six months as I've allowed myself to be distracted by the constant stream of stories about a man whose ambition is clearly surpassed only by his narcissism (obviously it takes one to know one).

Privately, I know many of us are still angry with Adams over what he did—and that's fine. Be angry. Write him angry emails. But take those angry feelings out on HIM... not the rest of the city. And especially not on the people and serious problems that really need our attention. Want to "get the city back on track"? Then exhibit the "character" that Potter wants so badly, and forgive. Still, kudos to Potter, Gordly, and Zusman—for prompting me to wake up and realize what I should have done weeks ago: choose a side.

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