An open letter to David Dilworth and the political bullies of P.G.
Thursday, August 6, 2009
Are you kidding me? You are actually attempting to recall Mayor Dan Cort of Pacific Grove? How could you possibly think this is a worthwhile use of time, energy or money?
Rather than fueling drama, negativity and controversy in the name of political activism, why not focus on bringing people into the process of problem solving? This town faces critical issues around our budget, resources, and environment but we are going to waste a year on a recall? If you focused all the energy you’re feeding around a recall into citizens groups that actually volunteered to work on community gardens, after-school programs, water conservation, rec-trail maintenance, energy efficiency, we’d have a much healthier community.
Now, I am not saying that it’s never appropriate to recall a public official. If someone embezzles money, hides information from the public, makes appointments to positions as political favors, etc., then we have a real issue. What is at issue here for SOME people in Pacific Grove is that they don’t agree with Mayor Dan Cort’s vision of change. SOME people don’t agree with his policy positions.
YOU KNOW DAVID, THERE ARE A LOT OF PEOPLE WHO THINK YOU ARE A NUT JOB.
But guess what? SOME DO AGREE! Some of us voted for Mayor Cort specifically because we DO agree with his agenda of a sustainable city. Mayor Cort was elected through a democratic process. If a small group of disgruntled citizens tries to recall him, then they’re undermining that process.
Let’s not forget, there is a whole city council set up to debate and exchange ideas, and plenty of opportunity for public comment. The mayor has no dictatorship here, so why all the focus on one person? Your fixation on the mayor can logically be interpreted as a personal vendetta.
Some of us DO think we have to fundamentally alter our business-as-usual attitude, or rather business-as-it-has-always-been. This fantasy of keeping Pacific Grove as some sort of quaint city by the ocean, immune to the real challenges of our current economy and global climate change, is helping to drive us into the ground. Look around: the city will be empty of new businesses and new families if we don’t decide to change.
You mentioned in your letter that there is a “group of cross-partisan citizens who have committed to work diligently and persistently to allow Pacific Grove voters to remove” the mayor from office. Well, if you initiate such a ridiculous waste of time and negative energy into this community, there will be a group of cross-partisan citizens to call you on the carpet. What a despicable threat you sent! Offering to keep things hushed up if the mayor resigned quietly hardly seems like the antithesis of honoring the democratic process.
So what is really going on here? You know David, there are a lot, and I mean A LOT, of people who think you are a nut job. They roll their eyes every time you get up to speak at council meetings. I have defended you in conversations many times: “Hey, at least he shows up and stays involved.” But I cannot begin to defend this move. When was the last time you came to council to say anything positive?
Or is all this activism just a way to feed off the drama? It appears to me that you are more interested in the struggle, the fight, and the crusade than the community. Is the purpose of political activism to satisfy our need for righteous anger or to cultivate a more positive community? If you think making positive change and tackling the very real challenges that this city, this county, this state and this planet faces is best served by feeding personal feuds with bitter, small-minded people, you’re on that path. What a waste!
I, for one, as someone who voted for Mayor Cort, and supports many of his ideas and policy initiatives refuse to accept his resignation, and refuse to be bullied by negative, destructive people.
This place, this community, this life is too special.