This has been embargoed until the filing today, but NC State Rep. Beverly Earle (D-NC-101) just filed the papers necessary to run for Mayor of Charlotte. She is in her seventh term as a state representative and has served as the Democratic Whip and Caucus Chair.
From the Observer:
Earle, who is in her seventh term, was the first black woman elected to the N.C. House from Mecklenburg County. She has been an advocate for women, children and mental health reform. She has been a leader in the N.C. Legislative Black Caucus and is past president of the Carolinas Association of Black Women Entrepreneurs.
Additionally, Mayor Pat McCrory is getting a serious primary challenge from the right from Ken Gjertsen, who is easily the most sincere, serious, and rational Republican on the Charlotte-Mecklenburg School Board. McCrory has taken heat in recent weeks for his comments about Charlotte's African-American community after Charlotte's yearly uptown Fourth of July party:
What's one to make of this week's uptown party?
A large police presence resulted in a largely peaceful night, a relief to those who attended with family members.
It was also a night of 169 arrests -- six times the number in 2005 and in 2006 -- for crimes that ranged from littering to carrying a concealed weapon. Of the 143 adults arrested, 122 were black.
City Council member Anthony Foxx said: "I think the temptation is to look at this through a racial lens, but until I have information that tells me something else, the way to look at this is through a community safety lens."
That would be easier to do if Mayor Pat McCrory had refrained from framing it in racial terms. He chided primarily African American youths for "imitating and/or participating in a gangster type of dress, attitude, behavior and action."
That's painting the picture with a mighty broad brush, especially considering that more than 99 percent of the crowd -- of about 20,000 mostly African Americans -- managed to stay out of jail. "Gangster" has officially joined "thug" as shorthand for bad black kids.