I don’t always agree with “The Voice of Scottsdale.” Which is to say, I frequently and strongly disagree. However, the most recent column really hits the nail on the head.
I haven’t weighed in recently on the issue of Mayor Jim Lane’s disrespect for public safety personnel. I’ve been busy with other things, he’s doing a fine job of demonstrating his stupidity all on his own, and I certainly don’t want to interrupt him.
However, I will take this opportunity to point out that, a) it’s nothing new, and b) it applies equally to all city employees and to all citizens. If you can’t contribute to Lane’s political future, you are nothing more than an annoyance.
It’s like his motto is, “Democracy would be great if it wasn’t for all these damned citizens.”
So here’s the column from Voice. Enjoy.
An Open Letter.
Dear Readers Who Don’t Live in Scottsdale:
Anyone can make a mistake – and, admittedly, our Mayor made a whopper.
At last week’s City Council meeting, Mayor Lane’s denial of a citizen’s request for a moment of silence for deceased Phoenix Detective John Hobbs was a huge mistake that can’t be undone — no matter how many times the Mayor apologizes.
Mayor Lane’s behavior does not represent the values of Scottsdale citizens. The Mayor was only speaking for himself, not the other Council members, city staff or for those of us who live in Scottsdale. We’ve gotten used to that.
We assure you that the citizens of Scottsdale respect the men and women who serve in Public Safety and put their lives on the line for us every day.
There is no good time to do what Mayor Lane did. But it couldn’t have come at a worse time for His Honor. He was still basking in the glow of what many people were calling his best State of the City Address last month. Many concluded that Lane was finally starting to sound like a mayor. Then this faux pas unfolds – which is not only overshadowing his address, but is also the kind of awkward circumstance that follows a politician forever.
The situation is truly regrettable.
To make matters worse, Mayor Lane’s miscue feeds a pre-existing perception about his chilly relationship with law enforcement. And for anyone inside or outside of Scottsdale, to understand the issue you only have to read the note the Voice of Scottsdale received earlier this week from Jim Hill, the President of the Police Officers of Scottsdale Association:
“After watching Lane refuse a moment of silence for a fallen officer, I, like every decent person, was highly offended. Unfortunately, I and all police employees in Scottsdale had the same thought: ‘true colors.’ The rest of the world was getting to see Lane’s true colors when it comes to how he feels about police. Then to listen and read his many versions of an ‘apology’ only compounded the embarrassment. Lane tried to blame everyone other than himself; it was the citizen’s fault, it was the fault of Roberts Rules of Order, he was taken off guard, it was POSA’s fault, and the best was when he blamed the Pastor for not including the moment of silence in the invocation. Hopefully, all the citizens will see and remember Lane’s true colors.
“God bless you Detective Hobbs, your tour is over. Rest in the knowledge that there are other brave men and women who will step into the breach. But you will never truly be replaced.”
Mayor Lane has probably been thanking his lucky stars that the Scottsdale Republic no longer prints an editorial page. Otherwise, he would have been skewered by readers – and, no doubt, many of whom voted to make him Mayor. However, there’s hardly a news organization in the Valley that hasn’t reported the story.
In the short span of less than 60 seconds, Mayor Lane brought down the wrath of the police and the public on himself, city government and, unfortunately, all of us who live here.
On behalf of the citizens of Scottsdale, please accept our apology.
We hope you are able to forgive – but we won’t blame you if you are unable to forget.
This week’s best sound bite comes from KFYI’s afternoon talk show host Mike Broomhead, who told his listeners:
“May we please have a moment of silence for Mayor Jim Lane’s political career.”