The Return of Councilman Clayton Perry

We all wish the man well in dealing with whatever he’s dealing with, agreed?

After the embarassing police video and charges of fleeing the scene of an accident at Redland and Jones-Maltsberger Roads last fall, the District 10 city councilman requested a leave from his duties. The council then filled his seat with his predecessor, Mike Gallagher.

Subsequently, it came to light that Perry slammed 14 alcoholic beverages in a 4-hour stint at a nearby bar called The Evil Olive (per the Express-News).

No one can watch the body cam video of Clayton Perry in his backyard and not know you are witnessing someone in serious, serious trouble.

The mayor wanted him to resign outright. I said then, and will say now, the people who elect you should get the first say on whether you represent them.

Now, he’s back at City Hall.

It may be that Clayton Perry believes his constituents want him back in that chair right now, and maybe they do.

Returning to the chair is like returning to work, and when you are dealing with a serious personal health issue, which I believe he is, that might even be therapeutic. I know something about having a passion for your work. It can strengthen, not sap, you, when troubles darken your door.

I have to question the wisdom of him running for yet another term, though, in the spring, which reportedly he wants to do. You have a responsibility to yourself to get straightened out. You have a responsibility to the district. And, if we’re being honest, the D10 chair is the only one likely to be held by anyone centrist or right of center. Is Clayton Perry’s best path to put himself out there? Or to identify and back a new candidate who brings his kind of voice, experience and policies to city debates?

A reelection campaign could be ugly and personal.

For his sake and everyone else’s, here’s hoping a lot of thought and prayer goes into that decision.


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