As Mayor, I Condemn Antisemitic Hate Speech Presented To Council

Wheat Ridge Mayor Bud Starker
Wheat Ridge Mayor Bud Starker

On Monday, November 13, during our regular business meeting, the Wheat Ridge City Council held public comment both in person and via Zoom as we have done since March of 2020, allowing public participation from home. Unfortunately, for the first time since holding a hybrid accessible public forum, several participants logged in remotely to share hateful rhetoric and antisemitic remarks.

I find these remarks vile and offensive. While we as a city value the right to free speech, the remarks were disturbing, shocking, offensive and unacceptable. This type of hate is not welcome in our city. 

I believe that we are a nation of laws and I respect the rule of law in our society. In my role as mayor, I am responsible for ensuring our meetings are conducted in a fair and open manner, preserving the rights inherent in our constitution. My role is to conduct the business affairs of the Wheat Ridge City Council.

I’ve had several questions about my role in restricting that kind of speech. The Council has rules that govern when and how a person may provide public comment. On November 13, recognizing the hateful content of the remarks during public comment, I paused the meeting so that Council could consider its rules to balance the right of free speech, mitigate the hateful content and provide for the orderly continuation of the Council’s scheduled business that evening. As Council, we took action to limit the time allowed for these hateful remarks while ensuring that business could resume expeditiously.

Let me be clear: these hateful speakers are not your neighbors. These bad actors Zoomed in from other states including California, Oregon, Utah and New Jersey to name a few. They provided fake names and addresses, which I verbally acknowledged from the dais.

Near the conclusion of the meeting, under Elected Officials Matters, councilmembers condemned the hateful remarks one by one. I am thankful to Councilor Rachel Hultin who recited our Resolution Condemning Racism and Hate that we passed unanimously in 2020.

At Wheat Ridge, we value community input and involvement. The city recently created a new inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility focused advisory committee, the IDEA committee, which will include 10 members of the public and a city council liaison. I encourage you to apply to become a member of this committee at

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