I’ve noticed an alarming trend occurring in New Castle politics. We’ve failed to maintain a level of civility and respect that has started among our politicians and been reflected in our town. I especially saw this happen at the Town Board’s June 15 meeting.
The meeting was about whether Jeremy Saland should resign his position as councilman and be appointed town supervisor or become the acting town supervisor.
The opinion Councilwoman Lisa Katz voiced had a lot of factual argument behind it, but other board members used this as an opportunity to misconstrue her reasoning with emotional pleas. Other board members kept conveying their “disappointment” that Katz wouldn’t appoint him when as acting town supervisor Saland would receive the same pay, responsibilities and authority without causing unnecessary vacancies that could threaten the stability of the town.
But Ms. Katz was shut down for expressing a different view. Rather than try to please other Town Board members, she was giving town residents a more holistic understanding of the implications of an appointed versus acting supervisor.
As an incoming senior at Greeley, I see what’s happening in our communities also occurring at my school. People are afraid to offer a different point of view, especially when this allows us to see a new side of a nuanced, complicated issue. This is not the kind of example we should be setting. We need to create opportunities for our community to feel comfortable discussing varying perspectives.