Salt Lake City, UT

Asian American Salt Lake City Councilman Received Hateful Email

S. F. Mori

Darin Mano is a city council member in Salt Lake City, Utah. He was selected when there was a vacancy after one member was elected to be the Salt Lake City Mayor. There were twenty-eight applicants. Darin was chosen and now is running for reelection.

Darin is the first Asian American to serve in that position in Salt Lake City. He is of Japanese heritage. His great grandparents were immigrants from Japan. Darin’s mother’s uncle had previously served on the Salt Lake County Commission.

A member of the Japanese American Citizens League (JACL), the oldest and largest Asian American civil rights organization in the United States, Darin is involved in several organizations. He was the architect who designed the Topaz Museum near Delta, Utah, and the Topaz Camp. That is one of the ten American concentration camps which held innocent Japanese Americans as prisoners during World War II because of racism.

Darin grew up in Sandy, Utah, and graduated from the University of Utah. He received his architectural degree from Harvard University.

The following is from Darin’s website:

“I was appointed to the Salt Lake City Council in January of 2020 to fill the vacancy left by Mayor Mendenhall in District 5. I could not have predicted the tumultuous year that was ahead of me. Though 2020 was full of surprises including the pandemic, an earthquake, and a nationwide call for racial equity in policing, I was honored to serve aside Mayor Mendenhall and my fellow Salt Lake City Councilmembers.

“As an architect, an educator, a small business owner, and a minority, I have a diverse set of skills and perspectives that help me as I serve my community. I understand the importance of urban planning, economic development, developing relationships, and meaningful engagement with my community. My role as a City Councilmember is to be a representative for my district and the people I serve. My goal is to be connected to my community, push for important positive changes, and make decisions that will benefit my district and the city as a whole.” []

Because Darin was appointed to the city council, this is his first campaign. He was out knocking on doors in his district. He had a list of registered voters to contact. He knocked on a door and moved on when there was no response. He left a campaign flyer.

When he finished campaigning later that day, he found that he had received a very angry email. It was full of hate, profanity, and a threat because the person had been awakened from a nap by a knock on the door. The man who sent the email was not the person on Darin’s list of voters. There was another name listed whom Darin had tried to contact.

The email was sent from an iphone with the sender’s name and email address clearly in view.

Darin had been a speaker at the recent Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month celebration in Salt Lake City. He had suggested in his talk that people report hate toward them in this time of increased racism against Asian Americans because of COVID and the words of some leaders. He decided that it was his duty to report the hate mail.

An attorney in the Attorney General;s office, who sent the email later apologized, not directly to Darin, but to the news media when they reached out to him about the hateful email. It has been called a hollow apology.

That type of behavior is totally unbecoming for anyone. The Utah State Attorney General’s Office says on their website that they are “committed to representing the citizens of Utah with the highest level of integrity, professionalism, civility, and transparency.” []

The story was covered by The Washington Post, The New York Times, NBC, and other national and international news media outlets.
Darin Mano at the Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month celebration in Salt Lake CityImage is author's

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I am a retired President/CEO of civil rights organizations. I have been a Mayor and California State Assemblyman as well as a College Instructor of Economics. I have also been an entrepreneur and international business consultant. I will be sharing articles mostly about life, politics, racism, travel, health, and relationships.

Salt Lake City, UT

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