Portland mayoral hopeful Sho Dozono is the only candidate with a snowball’s chance against Commissioner Sam Adams (himself a Rogue alumnus from Feb. 6). The affable Dozono says he doesn’t need to be a “policy wonk” like Adams, but “can hire all the policy wonks I need when I’m mayor.”
OK in theory. In practice? The Rogue Desk worries that Dozono’s lack of wonkiness translates to a lack of responsibility.
Take a campaign flier that was “Paid for and authorized by Sho Dozono for Mayor.” The flier, available through mid-March, introduces Dozono’s upbringing and says, “He remembers when members of his mother’s family were removed from their homes and placed in internment camps during World War II. Sho’s roots run deep in Portland, and these life experiences have helped define the type of leader he is today.”
Dozono’s family was among the 120,000 Japanese-Americans sent to the shameful government-run wartime prison camps. But it’s wrong to say “he remembers” the internment, because Dozono was born in Japan in 1944, a year before the war ended, and didn’t move to Portland until age 10. The last Japanese internment camps closed in 1946.
So, how does he explain the fliers?
“I could say…‘I remember the fact that Jews in Germany were murdered,’ but I’m not saying I was there. It gets into wordsmithing,” Dozono says. “The point is we corrected it.”
The campaign corrected the flier after an 80-year-old Portlander pointed out the mistake, according to Dozono.
This is, however, about more than semantics. It’s about responsibility. Dozono says someone on his campaign wrote the flier. If Dozono plans to hire people to handle the details, he’d better make sure they do it.