Amid last night’s disastrous Metro Council meeting which produced the expected result of Denise Amoroso, the wife of recently-deceased Metro Councilman Buddy Amoroso, being appointed as the council member from Baton Rouge’s 8th District, the figure in the crosshairs of many of the hard-core black political activists seeking to block that appointment was Metro Councilwoman Tara Wicker.
Wicker, whose voting record is reliably left-wing and who has never been questioned as a loyal Democrat, nevertheless has a reputation for conscientiousness and integrity. She proved that reputation to be true when, after Amoroso died, she agreed to abide by the local custom that the surviving spouse of a Metro Council member has first choice to join the council in the event of his or her death.
For that decision, and the decision to stick with it after pressure was applied, Wicker was demonized by her own constituents, perhaps most shockingly during last night’s proceedings by Arthur “Silky Slim” Reed who repeatedly called her “Judas” during a short speech before he was removed from the chamber, as some sort of a sellout.
What was lost in all of the furor was any consideration of the people of District 8, whose representation was what was at issue.
Wicker, when it was finally her time to speak, gave an excellent 10-minute dissertation on where she came down on it. And Wicker is an outspoken proponent of a sixth black Metro Council member – she just wasn’t willing to use untoward means to produce one. For that she’s Judas.
But Wicker came out of the fracas far better than her tormentors. Here’s a clip of that speech, which is far more worthy of notice than any of the people trashing her said last night.