Focus on the real issues

Dear Editor:

To take an expression from a 60’s musical, The Music Man, “There’s trouble, there’s trouble in River City!” The trouble here is not about musical instruments and forming a band with the city fathers being in opposition to same.

The trouble here stems from the inability of mayor and council to focus on real issues involving this city and its electorate. Real needs and the principles of democracy seem to be but pipe dreams. Disdain for concerned citizens and personal agendas seem to be the order of the day.

Council’s lack of transparency and accountability is only overshadowed by its ignorance and disdain for its citizens and democratic principles. There are many examples of this as everyone in town knows. Council seems totally oblivious to reality and continues in its “self-righteous path to oblivion.”

Once again a quote from  Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar” is warranted. This is attributed to Cassius speaking in a public place: “Why man he doth bestride the narrow world like a colossus and we petty men walk about to find ourselves dishonorable graves.”  This quote from Cassius is sarcastic. Cassius is alluding to the fact that Caesar has put

himself above everyone else like a god, that he believed himself to be better, and that everyone was meant to act as slaves to his desires. There are many parallels here that are applicable to mayor and council.

To illustrate this we need only look at some of the pipe dream plans of council. One of the main ones is the self-serving disregard for the use of parkland. Another is the “somewhat scaled-down” downtown revitalization project which happens to be in the area of the mayor’s family-operated business. There are the issues involving the tear down/remodeling or replacing of historic Memorial Arena. The list goes on and is common knowledge to community members.

Probably the most heinous issue is one of public input where the mayor has seen fit to hold opinion court (his), with reference to any concerned, outspoken individuals where they are banned from being part of many groups involving city issues.

This virtually might be described as an ego trip for the mayor. What is his reason for this? It appears to be because he is mayor and might makes right!

Wrong, Mr. Mayor!

By a small majority, you were given the privilege, yes, you heard me, the privilege of being mayor. To date, that privilege has so eluded you that even you cannot see it, mainly because you choose not to. When, if ever, will you learn?

 Ron Barillaro

Penticton