Monday, March 20, 2017
Aldermen, mayor representing the people
Regarding your editorial “Close to the vest: Bentonville aldermen still distrust the public”: What an insult to the Bentonville city councilmen who did nothing more than listen to their constituents who elected them to represent their opinions. They took into consideration every comment from both sides of the issue, and then voted to help citizens get items on the agenda. They did their homework. They did their job. The came up with a sensible, fair solution for both sides of the issue. They should be applauded, not disrespected.
At each City Council meeting the aldermen have invested an inordinate amount of time on the items they will be voting on. Each of them have full-time jobs and families. As they serve in this position, they give up their family and personal time to make decisions benefiting our families and city. Your accusation that they distrust the public, voted themselves more power, and put a public muzzle on those who might bring up issues they don’t want to hear is unfair and inaccurate. It is also a flip-flop from your editorial prior to the vote in which you said things worked well at these meetings.
So, what changed your mind? As far as these voices not being heard in the community, who and where are they? On this issue, they came, they were heard, a vote was taken resulting in six opposing, two for. Democracy.
Your harsh criticism of the aldermen not allowing any person walking into a meeting to speak on (your quote) “a matter of the resident’s own choosing” is as ridiculous as trying to equate the Bentonville City Council to the Stockholm Syndrome. Is it because these random non-city issues provide fodder to print? Any resident with a city concern can blanket email all city council members and will receive a personal reply from the majority of them, thanking them, questioning them and inviting them to call or meet them to work on resolving their concern. These aldermen, elected by the people, are transparent in working for the people.
One last thing regarding your swipe at the mayor, “if he wanted it on the agenda, it was on the agenda. If he didn’t, well, too bad.” That is neither historic nor characteristic of our mayor. He has not made decisions based on personal opinion, but on what is in the best interest of all citizens of Bentonville. For the record, this mayor and all previous mayors have set the agenda for City Council meetings.
Your editorial was nothing more than provocative. The real problem is people who don’t get their way when due process has taken place and they can’t get past “you lost.”
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