Retired South African President Nelson Mandela once said, “A good leader can engage in a debate frankly and thoroughly, knowing that at the end he and the other side must be closer, and thus emerge stronger.”
If these words ring true for one of the world’s most respected leaders, surely they can serve as a guiding light for Detroit as it faces what many residents believe is the Motor City’s most important mayoral race since Coleman A. Young narrowly defeated Sheriff John F. Nichols in November 1973.
That was a historic election as State Senator Young became Detroit’s first African American mayor. Now, forty years later, the world once again watches as retired Detroit Medical Center CEO Mike Duggan and Wayne County Sheriff Benny Napoleon compete to see who will become the next mayor of the largest municipality in U.S. history to seek bankruptcy protection.
Detroiters deserve to see these two very accomplished candidates debate the most pressing issues facing our city.