Letter: Let's Remain Civil This Election Season

Members of the Mercer Island Clergy Association write in a letter to the editor of their desire for respectful and thoughtful public discourse this election season. Letters to the editor can be sent to MercerIsland@Patch.com



As we approach the local and national elections in November, we might consider how we will engage in public dialogue with our fellow citizens.

The members of the Mercer Island Clergy Association would like to urge our friends and neighbors to participate in public discourse in a respectful and thoughtful manner. 

Recently, many in the community have expressed concerns that the tenor of public meetings and letters have, at times, not reflected the appropriate measure of civility that we desire to foster in our close-knit Island community.

Vigorous debate on the issues of importance to our community and nation are appropriate and necessary, and can be conducted with respect and consideration for other viewpoints. We believe that the whole community benefits from the contributions of each of its members, and so we recommend having the intention of listening to one another as well as speaking.

We hope that Mercer Island residents will express their opinions on the issues, whether national or local, in an agreeable manner, thus contributing to a healthy and productive community forum.


Susan Price, Member, Baha'i Faith

Ken Tracy, Bishop, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints

Mark Travis, Pastor, Congregational Church on Mercer Island

Marlowe Shoop, Chaplain, Covenant Shores

Hunt Priest, Rector and Beverly Hosea, Associate Rector, Emmanuel Episcopal Church

Kristin Jamerson,

Jay Rosenbaum, Rabbi, Herzl-Ner Tamid Conservative Congregation

Deanna Wildermuth, Pastor and Sue Wanwig, Pastor, Holy Trinity Lutheran Church

Julie Steel, Pastor, Mercer Island Covenant Church

Paul Barrett and Sherri Edwards Dalton, Co-Senior Pastors, Mercer Island Presbyterian Church

John Chae, Pastor, Mercer Island United Methodist Church

Gene Baade, Pastor, Redeemer Lutheran Church

Fr. Patrick Freitag, St. Monica Catholic Church

Jerry Gropp Architect AIA September 28, 2012 at 02:16 AM
Amen. J-
Bobby Funderlin September 28, 2012 at 07:35 PM
Shut up Mercer Island Clergy Association
Kendall Watson September 28, 2012 at 08:03 PM
I'm somewhat bemused by this strange sense of humor. Just trying to foster a dialogue here. What can be the harm in that?
Jerry Gropp Architect AIA September 28, 2012 at 08:14 PM
K- This is the downside of your allowing anonymous, No Profile Posting- nicht wahr? J-
Kendall Watson September 28, 2012 at 09:32 PM
We want to encourage people to participate in the discussion of news and ideas. When your response is "shut-up", well, that's clearly someone's opinion and they're registering their apparent displeasure with what they have to say — and it's not real productive for what we're aiming for. It's not exactly a violation of our terms of use, but we sure don't encourage that. Anonymous posting is also not encouraged, but if people feel the need to do this, for whatever reason, we won't stop them. We value the community's engagement as our primary goal. Kapiert?


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