Move to terminate top state official well founded
We support the Michigan Department of Civil Rights Commission’s move when the panel sent the agency’s director packing.
The commission voted 5-2 Tuesday night to fire Agustin Arbulu, following a controversy regarding remarks he had made that many found sexist and intolerable.
According to The Detroit Free Press, the controversy surrounding Arbulu, who has been on a leave of absence since Aug. 20, arose when he made comments along the lines of “check out her ass,” about a woman he saw outside a “listening session” held at a Grosse Pointe middle school, according to a complaint.
When called out for the comments, the director simply noted the listener didn’t like women.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer had banned Arbulu from attending cabinet meetings and publicly called for his termination, something that only the commission could do.
“The most important concern I have — and I think anyone should have — is whether or not that department is able to carry forward with their mission,” Whitmer told the Free Press. “And because of all of the revelations in the last couple months, I think it’s a legitimate fear that it’s been so undermined that they’re unable to carry out their mission.”
As the controversy unfolded, Arbulu wasn’t without supporters. Many cited a long history of good works and integrity in his defense. Others branded the commission’s decision a political lynching while noting other high-ranking state officials have put their respective feet in their respective mouths but kept their jobs.
We believe the commission’s action was appropriate and consistent with a policy of supporting women — period. Agustin Arbulu had to go.
— The Mining Journal (Marquette)