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Ernest Hooper: After heated mayoral election, blacks should bridge divide

By Ernest Hooper

Heís not a St. Petersburg resident, but like so many in Tampa Bay, the cityís mayoral race has caught the attention of former state Rep. Ed Narain.

From his vantage point, Narain worries far more about how the election has divided the black community than who will win.

"We can no longer afford to simply elect someone and wait four years to hear from them when they need our votes and are paying surrogates to divide and conquer our community again," he wrote in a Facebook post.

Narain is right to call for unity and greater accountability, and itís a message that translates to every black community. Only a concerted effort will bring about greater change. .?.?.

Seen on a bumper sticker: Please Do Not Feed The Ego. .?.?.

Shameless self hype: I will be presenting a webinar on Finding Your Writing Voice for the Poynter Institute on Thursday (newsu.org). Also Thursday, the latest episode of Thatís All Iím Saying debuts at 8:30 p.m. on WEDU-Ch. 3 with a focus on the opioid crisis. And Iíll present at the Times Festival of Reading, one of the areaís best annual events, at 2 p.m. Saturday. .?.?.

Confession: Through YouTube videos and written instructions, Iíve failed to master the art of tying a bowtie.

Thankfully, as I stood in the Jos A. Bank store Saturday with a newly purchased tie and no way to tie it, Alicia Billington strolled in with her fiance to help him pick out a tuxedo.

Unlike every other man in the store, she knew how to perfectly knot my tie, and I arrived at the Poynter Instituteís Bowtie Ball perfectly aligned with the theme.

I hope sheís around next year when I go to the annual ball.

Thatís all Iím saying.