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Mayor Pete’s popularity is not about white privilege | READER COMMENTARY

2020 Democratic presidential candidates use the South Bend police shooting to tell Mayor Pete Buttigieg how to run his own city.

Former Capitol Hill staffer K. Ward Cummings argues that Pete Buttigieg’s lack of Washington experience and his youth indicate that white privilege is motivating his candidacy for president (“Buttigieg, Trump and the Warm Blanket of White Privilege,” Jan. 21). Far from it. Mr. Buttigieg was 29 when he was elected the youngest mayor of a mid-sized American city, and in eight years South Bend changed from a failure to a model of urban renewal. Unemployment was cut in half, poverty fell by a third and household incomes went up by more than 30%. Baltimore would benefit from a president who understands urban needs as well as Pete Buttigieg does. That’s why he was reelected with 80% of the vote, including strong majority of black voters.

While Mr. Buttigieg would only be 39 next Inauguration Day, he would be a contemporary of the leaders of Canada, France, Ireland, Austria, New Zealand and other allies. An Afghan War vet with seven years of experience as a Naval Intelligence Officer, he would be ready on Day One to be Commander-in-Chief. It is those qualities, not white privilege, that explain why Pete Buttigieg has emerged as a leader in the race for president.

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Gregory J. King, Baltimore

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