To the Editor:
A Response to Alderman Dumas
I am not a resident of Starkville, but I work in Starkville, I have several family members that are residents of Starkville, I have many friends that are residents of Starkville, and I do most of my business in Starkville. So, I have a legitimate interest in the welfare of Starkville and I think these factors give me some standing to make the following comments on the 8/10/10 Starkville Daily News, Letter to the Editor, “Doing the same means we get the same” by Ward 5 Alderman Jeremiah Dumas.
I am not singling Mr. Dumas out. There are other members of the Board of Aldermen that show some of the same disturbing indications of bad leadership that he does. But he is the one who wrote the letter. Judging by city ordinances Mr. Dumas has recently supported, he seems to be bent on depriving residents of Starkville of their property rights. If this support alone did not convince folk of his liberal leftist leanings before, his 8/10/10 letter should remove all doubt – at least it has to me. Literally everything in his letter Mr. Dumas has freely written — with his own pen — reveals him to be a socialist and a globalist. His own words make it clear to me that Mr Dumas is not in favor of this being a free city — or even a free country. Because of these disturbing indications, I feel that his long letter requires a thorough response. Such a response makes my letter be long too…Even longer than it would have been had I not had to quote his letter in order for my reader to know to which portions I am responding. And just like the typical liberal, he fills his letter with dismissals and understatements of the good that is in the things he is AGAINST and with exaggerations of the alleged good that he claims will flow from the things he is FOR.
Consider the following (in quotations) from Mr. Dumas’ letter:
“I have read with considerable interest the many opinion pieces and articles in the paper pertaining to personal freedom infringement by the current and past actions of the Board of Aldermen.”
“I not only disagree with these statements but find it interesting that a community with our potential cannot see the benefit of local regulation in order for us to shed the past ideas of development that have produced the many unsightly areas of our community.”
1. Mr. Dumas tells us he “disagree(s) with …statements (residents of Starkville have expressed concerning) infringement… (on their) personal freedoms by the current and past actions of the Board of Aldermen.” But he does not explain why he disagrees and how the residents of Starkville are mistaken in this concern. Instead he does a mental and rhetorical fake and changes the subject to the irrelevant subject of the communities’ alleged inability to see the benefits of local regulation – as if local regulation concerns in Starkville, MS trump the Constitution of the United States… as if HIS goals for the community make stealing OUR freedoms OK.
2. When he is not outright ignoring our concerns, Mr. Dumas caricatures we who are concerned with infringements on our freedoms. He implies we have something physically or mentally defective in us that we “cannot see the benefit of local regulation.” We DO see the benefit of reasonable local regulation. But, perhaps our vision is superior to his, for we also see the disadvantages/dangers in the type of overbearing local regulation Mr. Dumas advocates. We are convinced that the damages/dangers of his regulation far out-weight any benefits it might have.
3. This is our city too. We like a lot of things about it. We don’t want to “shed the past ideas of development” that Starkville has used to get us to our current state. It surely is true that “past ideas” did, in part, lead to “many unsightly areas of our community.” But to say that these ideas directly “produced” the unsightliness is surely an exaggeration. Surely more than those ideas themselves were responsible for these “unsightly” areas. Reasonable people realize that nothing man does in this world is free from complications. We therefore expect unexpected consequences such as aesthetic shortcomings – at least on a temporary basis. We also realize that the mere existence of problems is therefore not necessarily grounds for replacement of an old system for a new one.
4. What is “unsightly” to Mr. Dumas is not necessarily unsightly to us. But Mr. Dumas apparently thinks that HIS standard of what constitutes attractiveness is the only one that should prevail in Starkville.
5. Mr. Dumas seems to think that HIS “new” Continue reading Letter to the Editor Response to Alderman Dumas