City Council, politically correct hypocricy, and the truth about who we are

I recently had the opportunity to learn a pretty interesting lesson on the history of Springfield. In a News-Leader article published of late, there was an in depth look at the industrial history of Springfield. In it, there were many facets of our economy and its past the article covered. At the same time, there were a few things missing that I’m sure the News-Leader simply “forgot” to include, and because of that omission I was left bewildered and confused.

Around the same time the article was printed for the Springfield community, Springfield City Councilman Jeff Seifried tendered his resignation as the public voice for Northwest Springfield. Now, how do these two events go together? Here’s how….

In the News-Leader article, we learned how competition, low costs for doing business, and a generally appealing economic climate was attributed to much of the economy that built contemporary Springfield. What was missing you ask? I didn’t note anything about the businesses that came here to allow Springfield to flourish do so because of diversity, SOGI ordinances, race relations, or any other politically correct legislation or “feeling” in the community. To this day, when I talk to business owners (which is often), their primary concern isn’t whether or not there are enough minorities on the police force or whether the LGBT community “feels” good about how they are treated. They seem to still be concerned about their bottom line; after all, isn’t that why people go in to business… money? And to be clear, I don’t blame them – good for them.

But back to my bewilderment… and thank goodness for Ozarks First! You see, they got it right (well, almost) with their article Courageous Conversation: Race Relations in Springfield. After this article, I lost all confusion. I was reassured that in order to be enlightened Springfieldians, we have to realize “how white we are” and only see the community through the color of skin.

You ask, “What do you mean by reassured?” If you listened to our City Council and several other leaders in the past several years, you would think that we are racist and intolerant, and if we ever want to grow our economy we need more taxes, diversity legislation, and the citizens in general need to quit being racist and bigoted.

It’s funny to even write that – because from my view the very people preaching this are ones who, from what I can see, are doing the very same thing they preach against.

You see, in the past 15 years there have been four City Council elections for Northwest Springfield. Of those four elections, and in this one particular district, there has only been one in which there was a candidate running without opposition. Of those same four elections, the only time this particular district has chose to elect a white person was in that same election where there was no other choice. Every time there was a choice, a minority was elected (a black man two times and a Mexican once) over a white man.

Further, when there was the opportunity for city council to show their own ability to be “diverse” and appoint a minority to council (due to the resignation of various councilmen), they went ahead with a Caucasian.

To be clear in what I’m going to say next, I want to ensure you know I’m using their logic.

I bring this topic up now because yet another councilman has resigned… that one white guy for that one district who has a tendency to elect minorities when given the option.

This leaves Springfield City Council the duty of vetting applicants and appointing one of them to fill the council vacancy.

From what I understand, there is a black man that is going to submit his application (as he has previously done) for the position. Never mind that he is a retired Army veteran; never mind that he is an educator whose biggest concern is our children; never mind the fact that he has a fairly good grasp on local politics. He’s black, so I encourage the same council that preaches diversity to show how diverse they are. Appoint the black man!

(On a side note, I may know they guy, but I’m not a fan of his politics… just wanting to be clear this is not me advocating his policies.)

In all seriousness, it is this type of distorted reality that I can’t seem to grasp in order to bring myself to understand liberal logic. In the end, will they appoint the minority? Who knows. Do I think if they don’t it’s because they are racist? No. It’s going to be because they decide he probably isn’t the best for the job. However, if a small or big business owner or a voting citizen hires or elects somebody for the “content of their character”, they are racist, or sexist, or xenophobes if it’s not the minority. Funny how liberal elected officials get a pass… and the media won’t blink – promise.

I suppose I just don’t get it. Maybe one day I’ll be informed and enlightened enough that I do. Until then, I’ll continue to believe that as a whole, Springfield is a community that is loving and embracing of all “groups” regardless of what I’m told by a vocal minority who happens to have a microphone by way of a podium or news outlet.

Did I call it or did I call it?

Not too long ago I wrote about doing history homework with my daughter. I went over what a refreshing experience it was. It’s easy to forget factual history when we are so often consumed with political rhetoric that, in order for certain narratives to make sense, history itself has to be rewritten.

In that particular blog I made the following prediction: “We have an election coming up in November. We can count on issues such as Michael Brown’s death at the hands of a police officer or other racially-driven issues concocted by the left being a part of the election. That being the case, we need to arm ourselves with the facts that help debunk the myths that so many are taught to accept as common knowledge in society. Learn; understand; share.”

With the mid-term national elections just a few days away, the prediction I made in August has borne fruit. What I find most interesting is the two more obvious and blatant race-baiting ads are being run in races which the Democrats are in extremely tight races and ones where incumbent liberals in panic mode because of recent polls.

It’s sad to see it has once again come to this… to watch what happens when even the most powerful people in Washington panic.

In Louisiana, Democrat Senator Mary Landrieu seems to disregard the fact that the current Governor is Indian and the previous Governor is a woman. What am I talking about? Well, in a recent interview she stated that if she loses her Senate race, it’s because her constituents are racist and sexist. Wow! Really? It couldn’t possibly be due to the fact that  since her party has been in control of the Senate and White House America has left men to die on the battlefield, our government has spied on everyday citizens in the name of security, and America has become weakened in the eyes of the international community due to non-existent red lines and weak-kneed approaches to brutal Islamo-Extremists. Nope, her poor polling is all because of the backwoods citizens she represents.

Don’t let yourself be fooled by thinking the accusations of racism are isolated in the Mid-South. North Carolona Democrat Senator Kay Hagen has a support ad making national headlines. Apparently, her opponent – who has nothing to do with Florida – had something to do with the shooting death of Treyvon Martin in Florida. You remember, Martin was the kid who was pummeling Jorge Zimmerman up and until Zimmerman took action, defended himself, and shot and killed his attacker. Additionally, the ad goes on to inadvertently state that if you are not white, you are unable to vote on time: “Instead, [Thom Tillis] made it harder for communities of color to vote, by restricting early voting and voter registration.” To begin, I’ll never understand why it is the black community continues to feed into the idea that the color of their skin somehow affects their ability to vote on time, get a picture I.D., or any other number of things that – as a minority myself – I find extremely offensive. While the Hagan/Tillis race is very close and right now in the Democrat’s favor, she hasn’t had the type of run you would expect an incumbent to have. Apparently scandals such as the IRS targeting private citizens for their political choices and government gun-running that has taken the lives of America’s guardians has taken a bit of a toll, and standard protocol for liberals in this situation is to throw out the race card.

I said it in August and I’ll say it now – liberals love the race card and they’ll use it at every turn. Nevermind we have elected and re-elected “our first black President”; nevermind the only white male (John Kerry) who has been Secretary of State in 14 years was appointed by President Obama. Nevermind the progress we have made as a nation in race relations. If it means winning an election, those lefties will use race quicker than the blink of an eye.

Now, did I call it or did I call it?

An Endorsement for Consistency

As the nation comes close to elections for House Representatives and one-third of the American Senate, individual communities are also preparing for local and state elections. It’s interesting to watch the local elections more so than national ones in many cases, and this because these candidates are right down the street from us and walk the same stores we walk. In the same mind frame, those who pay attention to local government can often recall events that have happened in the past with clarity; after all, those events were things that – again – happened in their back yard.

Being from Springfield, MO, and Springfield being in Greene County, one of the bigger elections happening right now is for the Greene County Presiding Commissioner. The primary is just weeks away, and the spotlight is on the Republican candidates: Bob Cirtin, Jerry Fenstermaker, and Steve Helms. For a recent article published by the Springfield News-Leader, the three were interviewed and discussed taxes and revenues. It was very telling in that we see how even local politicians take the national tactics of evading a direct question and bringing their response to a pre-scripted answer that most suits their past and current positions, and at the same time gives leeway to future decisions that may or may not be already decided.

In this instance, the first question was, “Would you support a new tax to help fund county operations? What kind?”

Candidate Bob Cirtin outright stated “no”, and went on to discuss his understanding of the need to bring new business to the county and that through discussions with the local Chamber of Commerce he understands that any new revenues need to come from “increased sales and property tax revenue.” This is rather interesting given that the local Chamber of Commerce is well-known for supporting any and all tax increases in the community. It is also interesting this philosophical round-about, given Cirtin’s run for this seat began immediately after the current Presiding Commissioner Jim Viebrock opposed a tax that officials claimed was going to support law-enforcement. What is more interesting is that Cirtin’s Deputy Treasurer is Greene County Sheriff Jim Arnott, an ardent supporter of the same tax Viebrock opposed. A bit confusing, until we remember the fact that this is a primary election at this point and Greene County is typically a conservative community. If we remember these two facts, it becomes more clear what is going on.

Next was the response by Jerry Fenstermaker. His response was that he would not support a tax at this time. He further stated that until “new leadership has done a thorough review of finances and explain to the public what the choices are for the next three years to become fiscally sound, there is no chance for a favorable vote.” At least we can rely on Mr. Fenstermaker to be more clear about his position, and while it is a bit misleading, it’s not near as much so as Mr. Cirtin’s. Looking back, Fenstermaker was the chairman of a Task Force (temporary committee) to decide what to do about the Springfield Police and Fire Pension crisis. In the end, and after “explaining to the public what the choices” were (which amounted to a campaign all about how the city would go bankrupt without a new sales tax), with his support, Fenstermaker’s task force won the fight and a new sales tax was implemented. If we look back to when he supported a new tax, we can also see this was at the height of the Great Recession and the economic downturn our nation was going through (begging the question of when he would actually oppose a tax). We can also note that Mr. Fenstermaker didn’t say that he opposed a tax, but that he opposed blindly asking voters to approve such a tax. First, he believes, we need to be “re-educated”.

The last response in the article was given by Steve Helms. Along with his clear “no” answer, he reiterated his pledge to “not raise county tax rates if elected.” Helms has a long history of consistency on this issue as well. In situations where people like Cirtin and Arnott form alliances, Helms stands resolute in his philosophy: “Greene County Circuit Clerk Steve Helms, who also opposed sending the tax to voters, cited “pathetic” turnout and voter apathy for the sales tax success Tuesday.” While this comment was made about another, previous tax issue, it is a reflection of the consistent approach Helms has towards the bigger question: Should government turn to voters for tax increases at every hint of a financial problem? Even when it isn’t the popular opinion, Helms has consistency. A fine trait to have when the microscope is in use.

It is clear that candidates are typically in favor of pandering to the mass of their potential constituency. That is what we have here with two of the three candidates – but at least there is a diamond in the primary rough. While this may sound like of an endorsement of Helms, it should be more so considered an endorsement of consistency. That is what voters want, and that is what voters deserve.