End of an Era

Berlin’s Mayor Klaus Wowereit steps down

Handelsblatt reports: “Rücktritt von Berlins BürgermeisterWowereit kehrt der Politik den Rücken”

Mayor Klaus Wowereit with his partner Jörn Kubicki at Gay Pride Berlin 2006 (Berliner CSD)

Mayor Klaus Wowereit with his partner Jörn Kubicki at Gay Pride Berlin 2006 (Berliner CSD): Creative commons (CC) image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Klaus Wowereit became the Mayor of Berlin in 2001, and at the same time Germany’s first openly gay high-level public official, affirming rumors he was gay with the words “I am gay, and that is the way it should be, Dear Comrades!” (German: “Ich bin schwul – und das ist auch gut so, liebe Genossinnen und Genossen!”*) in his 10 Jun 2001 speech before the German Social Democratic Party nomination caucus.

He was very good for Berlin, and a role model for gay people in Germany.

He has been increasingly the object of criticism in recent years, and there has been a great deal of speculation in the last several months about his putting down his mandate.

I was never one of his louder critics, but it is perhaps time for a change.

He will be missed.

* Wikiquote: “Klaus Wowereit”. http://de.wikiquote.org/wiki/Klaus_Wowereit (last viewed 26 Aug 2014).

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