Lynnwood council member under fire for posting shirtless photo
Mar 29, 2023, 7:02 AM | Updated: Apr 13, 2023, 10:06 am
Calls for a Lynnwood city council member to hand in his resignation are piling up — in part because of a shirtless photo on his politically-affiliated Instagram.
Joshua Binda posted the photo March 19 as part of a promotion for his speaking tour at local middle and high schools. The post features Binda posing shirtless, highlighting a tattoo on his arm that reads “Love Conquers All,” the name of his tour. In addition to his council position, he is CEO of Josh Binda Speaks LLC, and regularly speaks to audiences about youth leadership, unity, and cooperation.
The post angered some residents, who lined up at Monday’s city council meeting to express their outrage.
Protest today at Lynnwood opioid clinic
View this post on Instagram
“Deeply unacceptable and I call for his resignation,” one resident said during Lynnwood’s city council meeting Monday.
“I feel deeply insulted and angry that a councilman could do something like this to promote himself,” another attendee said during public comment. “He even encouraged kids to tattoo his name on their bodies. Like I don’t know what he’s thinking about.”
Eight-year Lynnwood resident Diodato Boucsieguez asked the council, “Is sexual marketing to inspire kids as a city councilman acceptable to this chamber?”
Councilmember Binda attended the meeting virtually to defend himself, claiming the photo is being taken out of context while refuting the abovementioned claims.
“I think that’s easy to sexualize something that was not meant to be anything sexual at all,” Binda said. “I think it’s a generational thing for this to be misinterpreted.”
Not all residents at the meeting were against Binda, as some stated he is being unfairly targeted.
“The problem isn’t with our skin, it is with those perceptions who fetishize and sexualize our body,” resident Elizabeth Lunsford said. “Our bodies are beautiful. Black bodies are beautiful, and it is a shame to sexualize and villainize a young man who is inspiring our youth to have love conquer all.”
Lunsford claimed Binda is a role model for the younger generations, including her children.
Marysville Police find ‘rainbow fentanyl’ pills in Tic Tac container
During the meeting, Council President Shannon Sessions revealed that Binda’s building access has been revoked, and his city council email is currently suspended. However, this is unrelated to the post, and is rather due to Binda failing to complete required training earlier this year.
Binda was previously fined $1,000 in January for using campaign funds for personal use. He also received a citation for filing a post-election report 280 days late. He is currently under investigation by the City of Lynnwood for filming a promotional video for his speaking tour inside city council chambers.
Binda’s “Love Conquers All” tour has reached more than 20,000 students across the state, focusing on the importance of leading with love and chasing their dreams. He was also chosen as one of the 425 Business Magazine’s 30 under 30 brightest youngest professionals of 2022.