Oralander Brand-Williams, Detroit News, November 22, 2011
Plans to host former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick at an Eastern Michigan University student event next week are drawing outcries from students and alumni.
Kilpatrick is scheduled to speak at 7 p.m. on Nov. 29 in the EMU’s Student Center Ballroom at a program organized by the student group Black Leaders Aspiring For Critical Knowledge (B.L.A.C.K.).
The president of the EMU chapter of B.L.A.C.K., Nicholas Patterson, says the purpose of inviting the embattled former mayor to speak is to “increase awareness of second chances.”
Mr. Kilpatrick is expected to speak briefly speak “about what he did, why he did it, and also, the road to redemption,” said Patterson in an invitation about the event. “As everyone has their own political views, we ask that you come with an open mind and listen in! We believe that Mr. Kilpatrick is the perfect person to speak about second chances and that this event will help somebody, if not now, in the near future.”
Efforts to reach Kilpatrick, who is mired in federal indictments alleging racketeering and embezzlements in connection with city contracts, were not successful. Kilpatrick, who now lives in Texas, awaits trial on the charges of public corruption next year. He has been on a tour throughout the country to sell his book, “Surrendered: The Rise, Fall and Revelation of Kwame Kilpatrick.”
[Editor’s Note: Read about the latest charges against Kilpatrick here.]