Friday, March 23, 2012

Will the FOG fall on the next Torrance County Commission meeting?

I honestly can't say whose fist pounds the table last in meetings where the FOG decides where they will and will not make their stands. I'm pretty sure its not the Executive Director's.

It is not up to Gwyneth Doland to decide.

Has the FOG taken a stand on the intention of the Torrance County Commission, to limit the free exercise of citizens rights to take notes in meetings by any means, including cameras?

What comes next; no pen and paper? Gotta sit in the back if your pencil is "too sharp"?

There are two perspectives on limited rights.

One begins with an individual's absolute liberty in the free exercise of human rights. It ends with limiting that free exercise only when necessary, and only with the authority of all the people.

The other begins with rights in the hands of the government and ends in its right to dispense them in what ever amount suits its interests (read; the interests of politicians and public servants whose face is the government).

The terms of public service are the prerogative of the people, not of pols and public servants. The exposure of Commissioners to camera lenses is the prerogative of the people, not of Commissioners.

There must be a difference of opinion in the FOG. One side is rubbing their hands in anticipation of suing the Commission after they make their mistake, the other wanting to saddle up and go fight back, before the Commissioners Gone Wild commit their outrage.

Torrance County Commissioner Lonnie Freyburger and the rest of the Commission, were backed off his plan to outlaw all cameras.

I am given to understand that they will next consider; limiting the right to use cell phone cameras, only to citizens who have bought and brought a tripod for their phone!

I'd like to see FOG step into the ring. Does the FOG really have no advice to offer to the commissioners, about their plan?

I'd like to see them send someone to fill in the Commissioners, on the moral, ethical and legal implications of any decision they might make, to screw with citizens who bring cameras to commission meetings.

I'd like to be able to stretch a pint of Häagen-Dazs into four equal servings.

If citizens with cameras get stuck in a corner, it will not be in the public interests, it will be in Commissioners' interests.

This seems like a pretty much up and down battle between good and evil; the kind that Edmund Burke was writing about when he wrote;

The only thing necessary for evil to prevail in the world,
is for good men to do nothing.
Any citizen who wants transparency limited only by the law,
rather than by the whim of petty tyrants, has a stake in this fight.

Freyburger et al. are going to try to stomp on the free exercise of rights by citizens with cameras. They are going to see if they can get away with it making harder for citizens to hold them honestly accountable for their conduct and competence within their public service.

They will get away with it if no one steps up to stop them.

photos Mark Bralley


Anonymous said...

Agreed 100%. I hope FOG takes up the fight if the Torrance County Commissioners reach-out to take away citizen rights. I can only ask, why is Torrance County one of the poorest in the state and nation ? Part of it is because the politicians don't allow any light in the county building. Honest citizens have to drive to Albuquerque to make a living, while Torrance County politicians demand a toll for passage. They certainly don't want any citizens hanging around the county offices, especially those with a camera.

Michael Godey said...

I am running for county commission. Yes, the people have the right to record meetings. Michael Godey