Fuhrman Insult…

Dear Editor,

Whoa! Whoa! Whoa! I’m sorry, but as a newspaper that promotes community peace, love and togetherness, where do you get off blasting one of our citizens, Mark Fuhrman, as someone you wish hadn’t moved here?  

What has he EVER done to harm Sandpoint? I’ve never met Mark Fuhrman but over the years have heard nothing but positive and caring things from those who have. He has paid dearly for mistakes made 23 years ago, has admitted wrongdoing and has genuinely asked for forgiveness. 

This man served as a Marine in Vietnam, was a decorated police officer, and is a successful author and journalist. Doesn’t sound like such a bad citizen to me! It’s time to stop hating. Take off the blinders, see the whole man, and know that people can and do change. 

Scott Francis
Sagle

________

Scott,

I think you need to check your outrage for just a moment. You’re the one who is claiming I am “hating” when, if you read my “watch” blurb, I never said anything about hating the guy. I merely said I wished he hadn’t chosen Sandpoint to live after the O.J. trial.

In the years following Ruby Ridge, when North Idaho was being ridiculed throughout the nation as some kind of haven for white supremacists, it was absolutely a blow, and embarrassing when Mark Fuhrman chose to retire here. This is the same Mark Fuhrman who perjured himself on the stand, who pleaded the Fifth Amendment when asked if he falsified any evidence, and also, more importantly, was caught on tape saying the N-word dozens of times. You can understand the trepidation some people felt in Sandpoint when such an person decided to move here, especially after dealing with the national ridicule and reputation this area had unfairly received.

Yes, I know people change. Everyone deserves a second chance. And yes, I am always grateful for anyone who serves our country, or works in the arduous field of law enforcement, but that doesn’t give anyone a free pass to spew racist epithets. Fuhrman did apologize for his racist remarks after the trial in an interview and in his book, but he also didn’t exactly own up to his words. He claimed he was just showboating for a film screenplay and that he wasn’t a racist. I don’t know about you, but I don’t hang out with anyone who regularly drops the N-word dozens of times in conversation who isn’t a racist.

You ask what Mark Fuhrman has ever done to harm Sandpoint? What exactly has he done to help Sandpoint? Perhaps he could’ve paid for his comments by talking with local high school kids about how casual racism and jokes can morph into something larger. He could’ve reached out to the Bonner County Human Rights Task force and volunteered his time with them, or joined their organization. He could’ve done any number of outreach-type situations with the community to atone for his mistakes, but I have yet to see him do any of that. Instead, he sold a few books and participated in a conservative talk radio show in Spokane and is an occasional guest for Sean Hannity on Fox News.

I do not hate him or you or anyone else. I just think racism is wrong.

Ben Olson, publisher

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