Avoid classless conduct that reflects on our city
The July 22 edition of the Siuslaw News covered in depth the July 20 Florence City Council meeting. Near the end of the article, it states that “Some confusion over what sounded to be profanity from an unmuted microphone during the latter stages of the proclamation discussions…”
I watched the live streaming of this city council meeting and there was no “confusion” as to what I and others heard from the “unmuted microphone.”
After the council voted down by a 3-2 vote a proposed proclamation on climate change, a woman’s voice in the background could clearly be heard to say “F--- Y--.”
Councilor Ron Preisler could then be seen and heard to say “Sorry ‘bout that” which leads one to believe that the audible “F-bomb” was dropped by someone in his household. Some members of the council also speculated that the “woman’s voice” was that of Councilor Preisler’s wife, who made her presence known earlier in the meeting.
The teleconference broadcast of this meeting, that is viewable throughout the world, requires those who are in control of the cameras and microphones to be extremely vigilant as to who has access to them during the broadcast.
The vulgarity in evidence at the end of this meeting is despicable and reflects disfavorably on our city council and our city.
There is no room in our city for this kind of rude and disrespectful outburst and Councilor Preisler should better monitor the conduct of his home audience to avoid this classless kind of conduct.
Our ‘City in Motion’ gets in the weeds
I really liked hearing Mike Miller, director of Public Works, articulate how the new floodwater management system is designed to prevent a salmon from swimming up the wrong pipe… and he also talked about how people who did the original development where this new system is going in didn’t really understand what is understood now about stormwater and groundwater systems.
He was able to explain why things that were done in 1996 may not make sense for today’s development projects.
He did what Anthony Fauci, the Director of the National Institutes of Health, was talking about when he noted in a Facebook interview with Mark Zuckerberg that it takes flexibility and humility to incorporate new data into the research process in order to modify protocols or predictions to the current situation — which has often changed dramatically since the original protocols were set or predictions were made.
And I was equally chagrined when the Florence City Council decided not to declare a climate emergency, and essentially shut the whole topic down — at least for now. My appreciation to Councilor Ron Preisler raising the issue and to Councilor Joshua Greene for his support in the matter.
In its rigidity, the council has shown itself to be incapable of incorporating new information as times change. It displayed no humility or flexibility, no willingness to discuss the matter with the public, petition signers or even among its own members.
There was some posturing on procedural guidelines, but no measures were suggested for how to amend the statement or the way in which it was presented, so that it could become part of our future (e.g. present it properly or in proper format).
Councilor Woodbury noted that this is not the time to change how the council does things.
In response, I say it may be the time to help the public gain skills in how to work effectively with the council, especially since the public may not be quite as savvy on how to ask for what it wants given the inherent rigidity of “document speak” and “legalese.”
Can the leadership of this town please get an eye for those they serve, and recognize the philosophical diversity among us?
Pay now or pay, pay, pay later
“You can pay me now or you can pay me later” is the punchline of the familiar commercial attempting to convince you to spend a couple of bucks now on a new oil filter for your car or, through your own negligence, bring it back later to the mechanic for a more expensive engine overhaul.
Harken back to late winter which, back then was the “now.” Fast-forward to today which is the “later.” In late winter, other countries were seeing skyrocketing cases of COVID-19 and struggling with how to deal with the pandemic. At that time, COVID-19 was almost nonexistent in the U.S.
Other countries went into draconian shutdown procedures and, though there are still outbreaks, they are largely controlled by the measures instituted including widespread quarantining, testing and tracing.
Before much was understood about important aspects of virus transmission, our medical experts downplayed the wearing of masks by the general population, citing the scarcity of masks which were required by first line medical workers.
It didn’t take long to do a 180 degree turn when more was understood about virus transmission and masks were recommended for everyone.
Out and out hostility to masks was often justified on the initial medical recommendation but did not diminish after the newer recommendation that masks were the most important weapon in fighting COVID-19.
This rebellion took on a life of its own.
The medical community recently has made a startling suggestion that if everyone in the country were to wear masks and follow social distancing guidelines, COVID-19 would be showing a rapid decrease in cases within three weeks and our rate of infections would start approaching those of other countries where businesses and schools are now opening.
So picture the following scenario: Our President goes on national TV and says something like “The medical guys think that COVID-19 would be on the run just by everyone wearing a mask and following social distancing guidelines. And this in just 3 weeks. So I am ordering everyone in the country to do this and I mean everybody. No exceptions.”
If our pandemic doesn’t come under control then, the medical profession will have a lot of explaining to do. If it does get under control, we can start seriously planning on re-opening up our businesses, our restaurants, our bars and our schools.
Of course, I doubt this would ever happen since it would amount to having our President admit that the medical community has been right through the spring and summer.
So maybe the commercial should say: “You can pay me now or pay and pay and pay and pay…”
I agree with Keith Kraft
I am 100 percent in agreement with the letter written by Keith Kraft (“What ‘Far-Right’ Means To Me.”) in the Siuslaw News on July 22nd.
We’re certainly on the same page!