Tomorrow morning on 1290 WHKY radio during Hal Row's First Talk program (Link to listen on the computer) there will be a discussion by the Citizens For Equity in Government about the issue of Ward specific voting. This issue has been addressed on this blog in the following articles:
1967 - How we got where we are today - November 11, 2011
1961 -- A lesson in Hickory's History - November 10, 2011
Hickory City Elections: The Results are in - November 9, 2011
Press Conference on Ward Voting Referendum -- September 20, 2011
Newsletter about the City Council meeting of June 7, 2011 -- Addendum on "The Newly Proposed Ward Boundary Map" - June 8, 2011
I hope that you will give Hal's program a listen in the morning and if you feel like calling in then do so. This is not a racial issue or about disgruntled people in Ridgeview. It is about whether the people of Hickory have a voice in making important decisions about how we elect our leaders. It was a conflict of interest to allow the City Council to determine how they would be elected 40 years ago and it was done without the consent of the electorate. All anyone who proposes going back to Direct Ward representation is asking for is a fair hearing. All anyone is proposing is that Citizens of Hickory be allowed to determine how City Council will be elected. They tell people that they should exercise their right to vote, but then turn around and say, "but not on this issue."
It reminds me of the Second Bad News Bears Movie, The Bad News Bears in Breaking Training, when they are playing the game in the Astrodome and the people running the stadium don't want to allow them to finish the game when they start making a comeback against the team from Texas. The kids refuse to leave the field and finally the team starts chanting that they want to play and then the coach of the Bears picks it up and starts yelling "Let Them Play" and soon the people in the stadium pick up the chant until the authorities have no choice but to "Let Them Play."
All we are saying is "Let Them Vote." It is the American way. It is what the country is supposed to be all about. It is about fairness and opportunity. There are no guarantees of outcome and no one expects any. I think that is what scares our local leaders the most. They want to control outcomes. Let me ask you one simple question. Do you like being controlled?