In an email dated Monday, Mr. Lopez-Pierre said he is calling for a meeting to be held in January to “discuss the potential damage to the political empowerment of the black and Hispanic community if Mark Levine, a white/Jewish candidate,” is elected “with very little black and Hispanic support.”
With as many as 10 black and Hispanic candidates contemplating bids to succeed Mr. Jackson, [Thomas] Lopez-Pierre wrote, there’s a “dire concern” in the Upper Manhattan community that Mr. Levine will “sneak” into office. Mr. Jackson must step down next year because of term limits.
In an interview, Mr. Lopez-Pierre confirmed he opposes Mr. Levine’s candidacy, in part, because of the color of his skin.
“I oppose him because I support black empowerment, black and Latino empowerment,” Mr. Lopez-Pierre said. “He could be green. He could be Russian. I don’t care where he’s from. Harlem is a black and Latino community, and he’s not black or Latino. And I don’t care who he sleeps with, who he’s married to—he is not one of us.”
(Levine’s wife was born in Puerto Rico.)
Lopez-Pierre insists he isn’t motivated by anti-Semitism, though:
“I don’t have a problem with his religion. I respect the Jewish religion,” he said. “I feel sorry for those people that will read this story and say, ‘Oh, he hates Jews.’”
This is not the first unsavory e-mail of Lopez-Pierre’s to be made public. In September, he responded to a parent at his son’s school who had called him a “moron” with “a rant filled with sexually abusive and derogatory comments,” according to the Columbia Spectator. And his previous contributions to the Harlem community include running a private social club for blacks and Latinos which invited women to apply for an “associate” membership as long as they were single, childless, college-educated, under 35, and attractive.
New York’s seventh council district could probably do better.