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Oh I almost forgot, to state that citizen input was prohibited in this case is downright false. Each side had and exercised their right to public input on the subject. Unfortunately, most decisions do not satisfy everyone's wants. To cry foul because your side was not chosen, smells like 'spoiled child syndrome' to me.
Toggle Commented Nov 20, 2009 on Citizens have no input at Toellner Tells it
Brent, I appreciate your point of view and I agree with the concept of citizen input, in fact I believe in it so much that I committed a portion of my life to serve those citizens of this great community in the best way I know how; no just at the municipal level but at the Federal level as well as a former member of the military. All that know me personally, know that I take personal pride in being fair when looking at issues I always try to do so with an objective point of view. This issue of which I have been personally involved with (from the start) has been one where many of the news stories have been very one-sided for whatever reason (of course those in the press often have their own agendas). I started out in this debate wondering what my neighbors thought of the idea which at that time was about to be quietly pushed through the system and I found out that many things had been left out of the story that Deb Hipp was telling people (when she was getting neighborhood signatures) and trying to paint a very inaccurate picture of what the neighborhood thought of the idea. I know because I talked to them. Yes, I was at the meeting at Jake's BBQ (I think that is what it was called - by the way, it is no longer there, at least by that name), the one that Deb Hipp put together and the one that only invited certain neighbors of the park offering them free bbq to attend and listen to Deb put on a presentation. It did not work so well. Yes, I know that Deb met on a number of occasions with public Officials behind closed doors to promote her idea. Yes, the same Deb Hipp who cried foul against a Parks Board, accusing them of something similar - this sounds a little hypocritical to me, and I do not agree with this type of behavior. I have read and seen some of the personal attacks and discourteious behavior exhibited by Deb Hipp and some of the members of the group WOOF while promoting their idea. I have seen the various tacts taken by this group to promote the idea even going so far as to espouse the theory that only non-dog owners are against this idea, this is completely false, in fact many of those that I have been involved with in this issue, are dog-owners, dog-lovers and they embrace the idea of dogparks as do I. I won't go into the number of examples that I have seen where those advocating the Sunnyside Dogpark idea have turned mean and hateful when their idea was challenged, the responses to my original post here is an example of this. As to the Task Force, just because such a group is formed and produces recommendations, does not mean that these recommendations should become gospel. Just because some appointed public group proposes to have liquor stores or dancehalls on every corner means that it is a good idea. This is where many seem to lose sight of(or just don't know), what it is to make public decisions. Many more issues are involved and many more points of view must be considered when making a decision of this nature. Just because many neighbors think that an idea is a good idea for them, does not mean that it is a good idea for all. Deciding on issues of public concern are not easy and often they are downright un-popular, but ultimetly, they are made with the overall public good in mind. This I know, because I have studied the subject in depth and have practical knowledge of such and in this case I am an affected citizen with a choice and a say and I have made the choice to provide input on the subject. I own two beautiful dogs, I live near both Sunnyside and South Oak Parks, I love the concept of dogparks, I have been to the meetings, I am thoroughly versed at all levels of the issue (not just a segment thereof), I have considered the inputs and have arrived at the conclusion, that putting a dogpark at Sunnyside is a bad idea from a public point of view for so many reasons. For those that would criticize public officials merely because they disagree with them on a public issue or for those that would just 'bash' public officials for some vague reasoning, I say that this point of view is flawed to say the least. For those that criticize my point of view because it does not match theirs, I would just say that I am entitled to such an opinion as we all are, as a metter of fact, I would also gladly render my qualifications on the subject anytime, given the circumstances, I feel that I am uniquely qualified to comment on such.
Toggle Commented Nov 20, 2009 on Citizens have no input at Toellner Tells it
With all due respect General: Times have changed, so must we, the Vietnam-era mindset of drafting young men and women into military service to support some ill-conceived notion that this great country of ours is under attack is unwarranted. The draft should be used as a last ditch effort to support and defend our country's soil, not as a measure to promote inflated military budgets or political agendas. Have we learned nothing in the last century? All we seem to be doing is making mistake after mistake, the results of which are lost lives, lost allies and an increase in anti-U.S. sentiment (which most certainly hurts us all in the years to come).
Toggle Commented Nov 15, 2009 on Bring back the draft at Unfettered Letters
Nice misguided piece fraught with inaccuracies and outright disception. The so-called 'Community Task Force' was an inherrently biased group which included membership of the architect of the Sunnyside Dogpark plan. The group had Sunnyside as one of it's top choices from the start. Also, I believe that Woof had only collected a fraction of the $20,000 you report here (where is the money by the way?). Talking about 'backroom deals' why no mention of the numerous one on one meetings that Deb Hipp had with various officials including a former manager (sympathetic to the Sunnyside idea)in charge on the region in which Sunnyside was encompassed. Citizens have no input, what a bunch of baloney. Debb Hipp and the group Woof instead of taking a work with the neighborhood approach decided on a full frontal attack instead, threatening lawsuits, throwing temper tandrums in public, amd even going so far as to openly advocating harassment of the un-paid Parks Commissioners when they did not get their way. Perhaps if they had used a less militant means to hammer their ideas across, there would have been less opposition to the plan they had proposed. Last I checked, rediculing, demeaning and threatening those deciding on an idea (i.e., the Parks Board) by the group and individuals trying to propose that ideas acceptance, likely ends in disappointment, let us not even talk about the merits of such an idea which in this case were less than desirable. Sunnyside Park was the wrong choice for so very many reasons, it is too small, it is too close to a heavily travelled thoroughfare, it already contains too many activity areas to include a walking trail, basketball courts, several ballfields, a children’s playground and sprayground, several tennis courts as well as several picnic areas. Those neighbors surrounding the park and a majority of residents in the immediate area were not receptive to the idea, nor were businesses around the park onboard with it either. Had Sunnyside been chosen, there would be no 'poor me' articles claiming injustice and corruption. I know, I lived right across the street from the proposed site, I worked for the Parks Department and I went to many of the same meetings, I also gained hundreds on signatures from neighbors and passed out thousands of flyers in the neighborhood. This whole Sunnyside issue started when proposers of the idea tried to pass it through without input from the community. Painting a deceptive picture does not mean that the truth won't emerge as many would like to think, especially those painting the picture (yeah, those with agendas). To those other with agendas always criticizing public officials as unknowing and inept, I would only say do not throw stones in glass houses.
Toggle Commented Sep 22, 2009 on Citizens have no input at Toellner Tells it