Priit Simson, an advisor to the mayor of Tallinn, responds to the editorial Estonian World published on 10 July.
The lesson of the so called “racism scandal” is this – we need more communication and less phobias. It’s easy to awake phobias these days and it’s quite hard to chase them away, once they are created.
Tallinn city government’s summer days on 29-30 June included a role play, devoted to the 100th anniversary of the Republic of Estonia. Many of the Estonian famous enterprises were “represented” by the city government’s workers. One of the city departments played the fishermen, the others were the oil shale miners, which explains why they wore helmets and had dark faces – as the miners sometimes do.
No harm was intended and please accept our apologies if anyone feels offended. Race was not the topic of the evening.
What helps? “Talk to people” is a good old recipe. If the editors would have made the same effort to ask for the city government’s comment, as they spent on writing the editorial, a lot of useless confusion would not have been born.
Advisor to the mayor
Cover: Tallinn city government’s offices (the image is illustrative).