If my reference in a recent open letter to the mayor and councillors to what the Nazis did, has caused offence, I am sorry as that was not my intention, and I can understand how people whose families were affected might feel – my own father being one of the millions who did not return after WWII.
On Thursday 5 October, I wrote the open letter about council’s new “Unreasonable Customer Conduct” procedure making reference to my perception of parallels in the language and tone of the document that reminded me of the rise of the Third Reich in the mid-1930’s and the subsequent use of gas chambers and firing squads.
The reason for making such references was not to cause offence but it was certainly to shake some councillors into a response, resulting hopefully in a toning down of the procedure’s wording to be more appropriate to the “problem” and yes, a total of three out of the nine councillors did respond – one almost straight away and one on Sunday (both acknowledging receipt) and one earlier today, 10 October advising offence had been taken.
While three out of nine is a pretty good response rate for our councillors, not one of them answered the question – how many miscreants are there out there being so unreasonable as to cause such a punitively and negatively written procedure (I’d better not refer to it as totalitarian or fascistic as that might unreasonably land me in even more trouble!)
It was somewhat strange that when Clr Constable attempted, at today’s council meeting, to raise this procedure because it had caused some concern in the community, his request was denied as it was not considered urgent enough by the mayor who said it would be discussed at next Tuesday’s briefings (which of course are not open to the public).
Jeff de Jager