Readers respond to Federal Way City Councilmember’s controversial comments | Letters

Questions about Erica Norton

I hope that the embarrassment brought to this city by Federal Way City Councilmember Erica Norton will be a wake up call to all to do your research before voting. Norton states that she was asked to run. Maybe the Republican party needs to look a little closer at who they’re recommending.

So many questions!

If she doesn’t like it here but likes Florida, why not move? Why stay and run for a council position in a state you don’t like? (FYI, Florida ranks much higher in COVID deaths than Washington).

All you Federal Wayans who are vaccinated? Ms. Norton thinks you are “brainwashed imbeciles.”

Experts say the single most effective thing we can do to prevent serious COVID or death is get a vaccine. Ms. Norton is not vaccinated and apparently has no respect for those of us who are.

After being pushed, she said she was coming from a place of trauma — but yet on her campaign website she states “I have learned patience, tolerance and experienced exponential personal growth while running my own business.” Really? But you couldn’t scroll past a Facebook post you disagreed with?

Elsewhere on her website she says she “learned how to organize and lead a large group of people, while at the same time, respecting their opinions.” That is not what I’m seeing at all — and to top it all off — not even an apology. She claims she was bullied and threatened on a Facebook post — guess what Erica? Walk away! Show some of that patience and tolerance you said you learned.

A trauma based reaction? Bull pucky! I grew up abused and am also in recovery — that in no way justifies your embarrassing actions.

Maybe it’s time for council leadership to work with Ms. Norton to prevent any reoccurrence?

Catherine North, Federal Way

Nobody’s perfect

I just finished reading your article about Federal Way City Councilmember Erica Norton’s comments on social media. I met Erica when we were working together at addressing the Federal Way homeless and crime issues, over two years ago. Erica is an extremely passionate person and whatever she does, she does with unmatched enthusiasm. You need to meet her to understand.

You also need to be familiar with how threatening and nasty social media can get. I’m not condoning Erica’s comments online. I’m asking Federal Way citizens to consider Erica’s honest response, “I’m working on it,” along with her sharing of childhood trauma. Some might say it’s just an excuse or a story to save her council position. I see an individual that represents so many of us.

I know I have been “working on” my character flaws during these stress-filled, complicated times. I can’t think of a better person to represent and fight for the citizens of Federal Way than someone admitting they’re not perfect. I’m not either … are you?

Laurie Sherwin, Federal Way

Norton’s disturbing remarks

It was extremely depressing to read the Facebook comments by Federal Way City Councilmember Erica Norton aimed at those who choose to be vaccinated against COVID-19. The reluctant explanation she offered to the Mirror should have started with a sincere apology.

Mayor Jim Ferrell and Council President Linda Kochmar were both quick to remind people that Norton has the right to express her opinions. That is true, but the same applies to the mayor and council president. While the mayor blandly stated that Norton’s comments “do not reflect the position of the City of Federal Way or my administration,” neither he nor Kochmar chose to exercise their First Amendment rights by forcefully challenging Norton’s outrageous statements.

If councilmember Norton’s disturbing remarks were indeed the result of problems stemming from childhood physical and sexual abuse triggered by pro-vaccination bullying on Facebook, that too is sad. But given that she seems aware of her sensitivities and background, wouldn’t it have been better for her to simply opt out of that triggering Facebook discussion, rather than feeding into it?

Serving on any city council is a demanding exercise, and this council faces a number of difficult challenges. I read that some voters may try to remove Norton through a recall. A simpler and less divisive step would be for her to resign so that she can devote her full energies to healing and recovery.

Gary Larson, Federal Way

Norton’s mental health

I have respect for Ms. Norton’s mental health challenges. She seems to have appropriate insight, in regards to her struggles. I think it best, for her sake, to consider taking a leave or hiatus from her position, to concentrate on her personal mental health needs. And stay off Facebook.

Kenneth Strong, Federal Way

Norton puts FW on the map

The Feb. 4 Federal Way Mirror article and the KOMO Radio program about Federal Way City Councilmember Erica Norton have sparked a very high amount of attention on our fair city.

As I understand from reading the newspaper article, part of her comments stem from Neil Young removing his music from Spotify. I cannot understand how a discussion of music on Spotify morphed into her vile language shown on her screenshots about vaccinated people. I won’t repeat the vulgar comments, but the FW Mirror has posted them.

How will this affect the reputation of her Republican party, the Federal Way City Council, or her personally — who knows? The one thing we can be sure of is that when we read comments from widely acclaimed and respected journalist and former executive publisher of the Seattle Times Mike Fancher and others, we can be sure the word is spreading about Ms. Norton. And as Mr. Fancher said, Facebook content is public. And furthermore, “Others might feel the comments should disqualify the person from public office.”

Newspapers don’t make the news, they report the news. And this article by the Mirror shows the value and need of local journalism.

Jim Grayson, Federal Way

Erica Norton should resign

I was horrified to read in the Federal Way Mirror Feb. 4 article, the social media comments written by Federal Way City Councilmember Erica Norton letting everyone in Federal Way know what she really thinks of us, her constituents, calling us “brainwashed idiots” and “imbeciles” for protecting ourselves with the COVID vaccine.

Since she is “suffocating here,” I strongly urge her to resign and move.

Furthermore, I totally disagree with Mayor Ferrell and Councilmember Kochmar that these were only personal comments. Ms. Kochmar said, “It’s her prerogative to respond how she wants, she’s entirely welcome to her opinion.” I vehemently disagree. When Ms. Norton calls her constituents disparaging names and spreads lies, she should not only be censured by the city council, but asked to resign.

Madelyn Grayson, Federal Way

Responding to Norton’s comments

Dear Federal Way City Councilmember Erica Norton, please resign immediately!

I take no pleasure in writing this as I admire people who are willing to serve their communities. However, your social media comments reported by the Federal Way Mirror show an alarming lack of judgement, are extreme, irrational, and pose a danger to the community. Your comments reveal that you are not qualified to evaluate information, collaborate, compromise, and make reasonable decisions.

I urge you to disassociate from from the media you have immersed yourself in and seek profession help to deal with your anger and paranoia. I wish you the best.

Richard Perry, Federal Way

Diapers for Norton

I am asking the mayor to please send Federal Way City Councilmember Erica Norton a crying towel and some diapers. One other thing, Ms. Norton, would you please propose legislation to get rid of all speed limit laws in Federal Way? They restrict my personal freedom, and the potential cost of lives lost with the speed limits does not make sense. You might also contact John Stockton because he knows of 200 professional athletes that have lost their lives by getting the vaccine, although he can’t list one name.

Walter Kostecka, Federal Way

Letter from Vashon

Please tell your arrogant council member that we live in the most highly vaccinated portion of King County and the COVID rate is a third that of the county and the lowest in the county. You might also note that we cannot get the vaccines or medical care locally and have to travel to adjacent counties for this purpose. You might also note that we have a mask policy and she would not be welcome in our presence.

Bruce Kinney, Vashon