Our Call: ‘Better together.’ If Sedalia and Springfield say it’s so

Editorial 

You’ll soon witness unprecedented cooperation between residents of St. Louis County and St. Louis city.

And no, it won’t be in the mega-city proposed by Better Together — at least not yet.

Whether residents of the neighboring counties agree or disagree that they want to merge into each other, they will vehemently agree that the rest of the state should not make that decision for them.

Under Better Together’s Rex Sinqufield-backed plan leaked to the “St. Louis Business Journal,” the county and city would become a mega-city, the ninth largest overall city in the country, decided by a statewide rather than a local vote.

We’ll leave the merits of the merger for another editorial.

If this is the finalized plan, a statewide vote on this St. Louis-centric issue would revoke the most basic right we have, the ability to decide our own government, our own taxation and our own representation.

We agree with one commentator who called it simply immoral. The United States is the land of the free, and our most basic right is the ability to determine our own government.

We don’t live in a third-world country where decisions are made on our behalf by dictators.

The idea that residents of St. Joseph or Sedalia would decide to force St. Louis County and the city into a completely new form of government makes as much as much sense as if people in Florida and California voted on whether Missouri would merge with Illinois.

This is as ridiculous as that sounds, and we hope Missouri voters see through this patronizing scheme.

And who’s to say that our benevolent powers-that-be wouldn’t set their sights on St. Charles next?

Whoever dreamed this up is rivaling Stan Kroenke in the Missouri mustache-twirling department.

And whoever this wannabe Kroenke is, they don’t know St. Louisans, who don’t like to be told what to do.

No one should be able to tell a person who lives in unincorporated Oakville that they have to live in a city. And no one should be able to tell people who live in Crestwood that they are now part of a mega-city that they didn’t get to choose.

The most stinging slap in the face will come if city and county voters vote against the plan and statewide voters go for it, ensuring that few in the new metropolis actually want it.

That’s a guaranteed recipe for “Better Together” success, right?

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