Letters to the Editor
To the editor:
The editorial in the Dec. 12 issue of Call Newspapers criticizing County Councilman Ernie Trakas for attempting to protect County Council members and staff from the recent threatening and intimidating tactics used by some speakers during the “open period for comments” at County Council meetings shows Editor Gloria Lloyd’s total lack of any experience in presiding over public meetings.
Understand that County Council meetings are “meetings held in public,” meaning they are meetings of elected officials held in public, for transparency reasons, so that the public and press can see what transpires during the meetings. They are not “public meetings” in which the public is to be active participants in the meeting.
Had Ms. Lloyd been in attendance, years ago, at school board meetings when public union activists threatened board members or at County Council meetings when County Executive Charlie Dooley had the county chambers packed with county police officers due to threats over the trash district issue, she might understand that it was Presiding Officer Trakas’ responsibility to protect everyone at County Council meetings.
Regarding “public comments” at meeting sessions of elected officials, I have never seen a “public comment” session at a Missouri state House or state Senate session, nor have I seen “public comments” allowed at any U.S. House or U.S. Senate session.
Maybe Ms. Lloyd should turn her liberal critical pen towards those elected official’s sessions who have no “public comment” period before attempting to trash Councilman Trakas for protecting those attending council meetings?
Editor’s note: Mr. Witzel is the Oakville Township Republican committeeman and the former president of the Mehlville Board of Education in the 1990s. Unsigned editorials are the collective opinion of the newspaper, not an individual.