By now, the entire industrialized world knows that the St. Louis Park City Council voted unanimously to discontinue to recite the Pledge of Allegiance before their meetings. That isn’t news so I won’t beat that horse. It’s already dead. What hasn’t been discussed is whether there’s a bigger story that hasn’t gotten the attention it deserves. In my opinion, there’s another story that needs covering that’s just as important.
Mayor Jake Spano got it right when he said “It feels to me like we may have missed a step there and if we had that conversation, we might have been able to hear from our community about how they felt about this action.” First, let’s dispense with the “may have.” The City Council intentionally skipped that step. This was an ambush, pure and simple.
This isn’t a new tactic. The DFL ‘nonpartisans’ in other cities have used the “inclusive and welcoming” argument before to push through unpopular resolutions and rule changes. When St. Cloud wanted to ambush Councilman Jeff Johnson with a resolution on refugee resettlement, the put the resolution on the agenda at the last minute, then arranged for special interests, including CAIR-MN, to speak when the microphones opened up. They made sure average citizens didn’t have the chance for input.
When St. Louis Park voted to drop the Pledge, the public didn’t have the opportunity to testify. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? When I led the Vote No campaign to sink the bonding referendum, I tirelessly told LFR readers that the ISD 742 School Board was trying to keep the referendum as low profile as possible. Stealth was its chief tactic. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? Are you sensing a pattern yet?
The DFL locally and Democrats nationally don’t win arguments anymore. They don’t bother trying, in fact. They call people who oppose them bigots or racists, instead. Once upon a time, Democrats consistently insisted on openness and fairness. Now, they insist on those things only when it helps them. There’s nothing consistent about it anymore.
During this past Monday night’s study session, the St. Louis Park City Council hoped to not to take public testimony:
According to WCCO news, the session was meant to re-address the council’s unanimous decision to drop the Pledge of Allegiance from council meetings. The session was not meant to include public input, but that did not stop community members from interrupting.
People were already pissed with the Council’s decision. They held this study session to plot a path forward. Their intention was to restrict or eliminate input from their constituents. What part of that sounds like a plan to resolve this outcry?
Passing this rules change without public input is what got the Council in trouble. Did they think that plotting political strategy without public input would help fix this problem? Only people who are totally out of touch would think that would fix things.
This looks like white gas getting poured on a raging fire:
The pattern that’s emerged is for Democrats to restrict public testimony and/or to accuse people who oppose them of being racists. Fortunately, the DFL hasn’t called these patriots racists — yet.