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Objecting to Coulee Dam councilman's behavior

Letter to the Editor


At this past week’s Coulee Dam’s Town Council meeting we observed an extremely angry outburst from Dave Schmidt (a town council member) directed towards some of Coulee Dam’s citizens when they objected to a comment made by Mr. Schmidt.

Mr. Schmidt does not have the same views on a lot of issues and that is fine. It doesn’t matter who was right or wrong. What I question and dislike is Mr. Schmidt’s verbally replying in an extremely loud voice in a public meeting. I feel that as an elected official in a public meeting, he should have enough self control to not come unglued when something is said that angers him or upsets him, whether it is true or not. Citizens should be able to object to what our public officials say without the fear of being subject to this kind of verbal abuse. Our citizens should not be afraid to express their opinions without the fear of council members treating them in such an unprofessional manner. What keeps many of our Citizens from joining in dialogue at council meetings is the fear of this kind of treatment (fear of being ridiculed). We should be able to come to council meetings and express our opinion or question what is being said.

I feel that Mr. Schmidt owes the rest of the Council, the Mayor, and all of us citizens that were present an apology. His verbal tirade was totally uncalled for.

A public official should have enough self restraint to keep calm, and he needs his responses to be in a calm and in an intelligent manner. Local government officials should not adopt and copy the actions of a lot of our national leaders.

We all live in a very small, unique community and we should be able to get along even though we have differences of opinion.

After seeing this display of spiteful anger I really wonder if we want to re-elect this councilman for another term. Is this the type of person we want representing us on the Town Council? I don’t think so!

We should be able to agree to disagree, question what is said, discuss the topic some more, listen to all comments, ideas, and suggestions and keep this dialogue going until all opinions and ideas are heard, and then our elected officials can make an intelligent decision based on what the people who elected them want. If this process is not followed and our elected officials just do what they want then they are not representing us, at least not me.

Mr. Schmidt, if you want to get re-elected you had better rethink your behavior. Your behavior in the Council Meeting was totally uncalled for.


Ed Bartley



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