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Reader says “Civility” meeting, What a bunch of nonsense.


file photo Boyd Loving

Reader says  “Civility” meeting, What a bunch of nonsense.

The mayor is simply taking a page out of the resident’s playbook, calling for civility only after he and his minions have already distorted the public discourse, intimidated or demonized well-meaning political opponents, and generally done the damage he intends to do.

Even this event is nothing more than a belligerent shot across the bow to those who would come to public meetings in the future and dare to voice a contrary view at the public microphone, or otherwise level any well-deserved criticism the Mayor’s way.
To his mind, now that we’ve gone and taken the trouble of having a silly public meeting about the need for ‘civility in public discourse’, we have established a new norm, in accordance with which anyone who goes to the microphone to disagree with or criticize the Mayor or his friends is, by definition, engaging in a social ‘taboo’, and will therefore have voluntarily opened themselves up to immediate public abuse from the elected official DuJour, shamelessly served with a culturally toxic side-dish of relish, impunity, and maddening condescension.

Problem solved!

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9 thoughts on “Reader says “Civility” meeting, What a bunch of nonsense.

  1. Smart guy our Mayor. He sure knows how to work the crowed.

  2. They are trying to intimidate everyone from speaking up.

  3. It’s not a “crowd” they are Village residents and deserve everyone’s attention.
    When you do, they are inclined to participate — that’s called good Public Relations.

  4. This is the most uncivil mayor since Pfund. He shouldn’t have been allowed in the room!

  5. I think it just depends on how one approaches criticism of the current government.

    If one stands at the podium and hurls personal attacks and veiled accusations of impropriety in the form of rhetorical questions and straw man scenarios, then I can see the Council reacting in a similarly unprofessional manner. This is small town politics, after all, and some of the players are less polished than others.

    Criticizing the government is fine, and some would argue a civil responsibility, but there needs to be a point: some vector towards improvement, and a mutual willingness to work towards a compromise.

  6. they are all full of dog doo.

  7. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it. The First Amendment has existed for hundreds of years and it gives Americans enviable freedom (unlike, say, in the UK where people have been literally jailed for offensive tweets). It protects against politicians making speech that threatened their power illegal. If you can’t handle it, there are many countries you can relocate to where what you can say is state-controlled.

  8. Secondary side discussion: should officeholders with likewise distorted ideas about the Constitution who pursue policies flagrantly detrimental to it and the citizens they serve be said to “hold differing policy views,” or should words more befitting the danger inherent in electing such people be used?

  9. I am a strong believer in free speech no matter how stupid, hateful, or unpopular that speech is, but I suppose if you twisted my arm I could compromise and allow bans on one form of speech. That would be blowhard elected officials singlehandedly defying the New Jersey State Sunshine Law by egotistically grabbing the public microphone (!) and executing one of the most exquisite, hypocritical, logic-twisting, irony-defining, triple-twister-with-a-backflip dives into the capacious pool of numbnutted man-child foolishness imaginable by breezily calling for censorship and limits on free speech – which I find hateful and “excessively objectionable.”

    I’m just kidding of course, because by allowing people to express their wrongheaded opinions at imprudently-convened unofficially official privately public meetings, you are giving others a chance to respond to and criticize those ideas (see: these comments). The resulting public discourse, I believe, does much more good than harm. And although some mistakenly claim that restrictions on free speech are unlikely to be abused in Orwellian and Authoritarian ways in the USA (what with our infallible government and all), you’ll find plenty of such instances from the last century of American history alone.

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