Wednesday, July 29, 2009

3 comments:

AFemaleAirForceVet said...

Forgive my ignorance but who is the man in blue with the glasses sitting to the mayor's left (I believe)? He is the one who suggested limiting citizens to three minutes, which I find to be not only ridiculous but downright offensive. What a double standard - our elected officials in Washington can debate an issue for hours and even days (I am sure we are all familiar with the term *filibuster*), but our citizens, whom this council has been elected to represent, are only allowed THREE MINUTES to voice their opinion?

I will be sure to campaign against this man in the next election and quite frankly against every council member on there because they had the audacity to blindly support such an insulting and counterproductive motion designed to squelch the people's voice! Thank you Mayor Hammons for your ability to see through this invasion of citizens' rights - you are wise far beyond your years!

MuskogeePolitico said...

The councilor in question is David Jones (Ward 1).

In slight defense of the council, it has been their policy for years to give citizens three minutes of input, in order to keep the meetings timely.

However, they have NOT been consistent in following or enforcing the policy.

Some meetings they allow folks to talk for more than three minutes, some meetings they don't. Sometimes they allow citizens to speak multiple times, sometimes they don't.

If they would just be consistent, instead of choosing only to enforce the policy during controversial meetings, I wouldn't have that much of a problem. But they don't.

This is a problem that the city council has, and needs to fix. THey also have another policy that the council cannot respond to public questions (which is just stupid), but again, they pick and choose when to follow it.

AFemaleAirForceVet said...

Thanks for the clarification as well as the identification of the council member in question - I had deduced correctly it was David Jones.

I agree with you that consistency would certainly simplify matters. On the other hand, I could never agree to the three-minute-talk-time and only-speak-once rules NOR the one about not being able to respond to questions from the public. A more reasonable and respectful solution would be for the council to collectively address all questions by the public at the end of the public comments and not necessarily individually while the public is commenting. To not answer your constituents' questions is quite simply rude.

Quite frankly, all three of those asinine rules should be considered an inuslt to every American citizen. I realize they want to keep the meetings "timely" yet I noticed their comments are not limited to three minutes nor are they only allowed to address the issue one time and one time only. I question which they would find to be more gratifying - a "timely meeting" or being able to speak their piece (can we say Freedom of Speech)? If they want the respect they deserve then they need to show respect to the citizens they "supposedly" SERVE. Period.