I loved that Councilman Dane Slater -- an officer and a gentleman if there ever was one -- came up with the perfect word for the parade of misinformation that comprised last night’s public comment section during the City Council session.
The usual cast of characters – what I call anti-tax council gadflies – came up person after person spewing their typical nonsense. Nonsense that has been previously corrected and explained over and over again, and yet Team TCU continues to repeat it. Those of us who stay tuned to this stuff are fully aware. The casual observer probably is not. It all sounds so darn legit. To be sure, some of it is new nonsense, recited as if it is a well-researched fact; it is troubling how often some of the assertions to illustrate a “city government so out of control” turn out to be completely untrue.
It’s purposeful. It’s political. It’s petty.
Meanwhile, a few residents stepping up to speak actually try to set the record straight. Eventually, the council agenda allows Council the opportunity to respond. Together with staff, they work to set the record straight. To educate. To make sure those left in the room – unfortunately most of the untruthful types leave before this happens -- have their facts straight. The correct information. (One of many examples: “the city manager makes more than the governor and he hasn’t taken any cuts,” etc.; not true. They know it. But they keep repeating it and have for months now. It sure is great crap that just sounds so darn good when you want to be all political and discredit city leadership.)
Last night, during council comment the same “correcting” occurred. There was a LOT of misinformation. Not differences of opinion, but full-on inaccuracies. It’s sad to see, really.
As the usual time for such corrections wound down, Councilman Slater used his time to acknowledge the police officers who were in attendance; they were there because the new police contract was on the agenda for council approval. The officers recently volunteered to open their contract some two years early to negotiate a 10 percent concession. Mr. Slater, in a short-hand reference to the calculated parade of misinformation they had witnessed, referred to it as “crap.” He wasn’t talking about opinions or the factual stuff. Nope. Everyone in the room new exactly what he was referring to – the political game playing. He was making sure the officers understood that this is what our City Council puts up with every single meeting; while acknowledging their give-back, in a quiet and understandable show of misery loves company, he noted the pain of the “crap” with a slight wave of his hand toward the public-comment microphone. It was as if he was saying thank you for the concessions because can you imagine the crap we would have to listen to if you didn't?
It was probably the greatest truth that has ever been spoken in that council chamber.
Now, I can imagine, the TCU and its righteous pitchfork-and-torch crowd will be all up in arms about this. They will take it all personally as a slight against residents and say he disrespected them. TCU types love their anger and an excuse to sputter in indignation. They will be attacking Councilman Slater, I’m sure of it. As sure as I am that they will continue to spew crap at the next council meeting.
On the contrary, those of us who came to speak and listen in good faith felt his full-on total respect and understood his frustration with the discrediting of the council through lies. He knows and respects those of us who come to speak to offset that crap. And he respects the police officers who are dealing with the fallout of that crap – residents who disrespect them as a result of it – every day.
For those who are likely all offended, they need to remember a funny truth in life: you get what you give. When you give crap, you get crap right back. You are getting what you are giving.
Because, frankly, all of us truly interested in the best-interests of the entire community are sick of your crap. And folks like me and Councilman Slater are going to call it out when we see it.
Keep slinging it, TCU types. And when it starts splattering back on you, go cry me a river. Because I am so over your crap it's incredible. Better yet, grow a pair and start participating in the discourse in a professional manner that respects the process.
Please. Stop with the crap before you completely destroy the city.
Gulp. Come to think of it … that seems to be your goal.
Why else would you sling so much crap? Oh, crap.