NEW YORK - In the dictionary next to the words dignity and polite should be a photo of former NYC Mayor David Dinkins with no other definition.
In a 30 year relationship, in public or private, I have never seen him yell, scream, or even raise his voice.
In Japan with Dinkins at the time of the first attack on the world trade center while he served as Mayor, that early morning in Osaka he didn’t let his emotions show as he received the horrible information from back home.
I’ve seen him in some tough situations and he didn’t even raise his voice. If you ever annoyed Dinkins, the best you would ever get is "why do you ask that," which was his rhetorical way of stating the person already knew the answer to the question.
There are some things you just learn to accept in life. David Norman Dinkins, a nice guy is one of them.
I really thought I would die without ever witnessing Dinkins get angry under any circumstance.
But you never know what can get under a person’s skin.
Ultimately after all these years, Dinkins displayed some angry emotion and it wasn’t even in defense of himself, or his tenure as Mayor, but rather for the man Dinkins calls “his brother” Congressman Charles Rangel.
Walking into Congressman Charles Rangel’s 80th birthday party at the Plaza Hotel Wednesday night, a heckler shouted at Dinkins that he was, “attending a party for a crook.”
Every mayor has been asked a million questions by journalists with many chief executives of the city storming out of the Blue Room at City Hall in protest.
But it was that display that set Dinkins off.
Dinkins, legendary for his low-key personality responded by raising his middle finger at the protester.
You have to understand. That behavior would be expected from Koch, Giuliani, any other politician, maybe Mayor Bloomberg, but not Mayor Dinkins.
That "flipping of the bird," was sure talked about in the media.
Perhaps, the point here is never mistake kindness for weakness, and he may have referred to New York's diversity as a "gorgeous mosaic" but at Dinkins age (83)he has earned the right to express exactly how he feels.