The 'People's House' Is Not Fit For These Kings

By An Elk Grove Taxpayer and Registered Voter | January 28, 2016 |

Since being elected, Elk Grove Mayor Gary Davis has gotten a lot of mileage out of his pet phrase "this is the People's House". Davis is referring of course, to the City Council Chambers and his desire to give the impression that average citizens should feel welcome to step up to the podium and speak freely on any issue that concerns them. Well judging by the typical reaction of our Council 'kings' to those comments, I'd hate to see how the Kings would treat those citizens if this wasn't the People's House! 

I've noticed that certain residents get the 'royal' treatment from our Kings whenever they bring up comments that go against the grain of the elected's groupthink. This is not the first time the Kings have been chastised over their rude behavior toward these persons, but it seems like each meeting they hit a new low, and finally I must conclude that the People's House is not fit for these Kings, or more accurately, the Kings are not fit for our House. 

The People's House is rigged against the people who choose to make comments or ask questions. As those certain unnamed speakers approach the podium, the body language and responses by the Kings are akin to getting the vaudeville hook. As the electronic timer counts down your three minutes, you are gently reminded that your time is up, but what typically follows is shameful leads me to conclude that these Kings are rank amateurs and fail the decorum test.

I have observed that when certain speakers ask questions about the agenda items during their three minutes, they rarely get the courtesy of an answer nor "one of our staff will get back to you" canned response. Nope, nothing other than "next speaker please". And heaven forbid if the speaker is critical of the issue pending approval--it's almost as bad as when Galileo stated that the universe did not revolve around the Earth. Well Kings, your universe does not revolve around yourselves, it revolves around we the people--the one's who voted you in and pay our taxes to support your spending account.

This set of Kings we have in our house evidently believe it is appropriate to mock, ridicule, or otherwise denigrate certain speakers after their three minutes have expired and they have taken their seat. The royal court has rigged the game because the citizens cannot rebut or clarify their comments and the five kings have free reign to let loose. To the casual observer tuned in to the cable TV broadcast, this whole smackdown comes across as pitiful, defensive, and embarrassing for our city. 

I have traveled around the state a lot and for whatever reason that I still ask myself, I tend to follow civic affairs. As a side note about myself, I once watched the Maui Planning Commission meeting on my hotel television while on vacation! The common behavior of other City Council members in other cities is to receive any and all public comments, strive to answer any questions they pose, and not treat those comments as if it were open season on sitting ducks. And sit down for this one--I have actually seen council members ask for the resident to come back to the podium to clarify their comments or even engage in a productive discussion afterward. No! This can't be!  

As we enter election season and our Kings busy themselves preparing their list of accomplishments and dream projects for the future, I must ask whether these Kings have outlived their welcome and are no longer worthy to serve in our House? 

"What means this shouting? I do fear, the people choose Caesar for their King"

-William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar

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Anonymous said...

so pathetic.
There have been so many other examples of the council denigrating and ridiculing the citizens, to bad they weren't exposed on the video.

Detrick may be the worst of the group.

Not a King's Man said...

What irks me the most is when one of the speakers is a developer and a big contributor to a council member’s campaign. The red carpet is rolled out as the developer approaches the podium. And sure enough, as if right on cue, at least one council member will flip on his microphone and tell everyone what “great friend” so and so is. If that developer is followed by a citizen, the red carpet is quickly rolled up and the speaker is then treated with disdain from that same council member. It is disgusting!

Anonymous said...

Some of us were talking today about the city council meeting we watched last night. It was our opinion it had finally hit bottom, something we had seen gradually happening. After speakers had their 3 minutes and taken their seats, two councilmembers then took them to task. Of course the speakers are not allowed to respond or have further discussions. Also on one Agenda Item the city chose to not give a presentation, just read the Title. At that point Mr. Hume asked if perhaps they had a map so people could see what was being discussed and voted on...Democracy at it's best! We called last nights meeting "Shark Night". Everyone should take the time to watch this meeting to see where our elected leaders (King's) have finally taken us...sad time for EG.

Anonymous said...

It will be a lot harder to oust Davis if he has no electoral opposition, as was the case in 2014.

Anonymous said...

Hopefully from what I'm hearing he will have some competition and that will serve the people well. He has become a liability for the taxpayers of this city and it's time for him to go! JMO

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