What I’ve always tried to do here is give citizens some level of access to what’s going on in the City government – with my own commentary added in. As near as I can tell, I’m the only guy around who is doing this and I’ve tried to be as straight about it as possible. I haven’t deleted posts because someone thinks I’m dumb or disagrees with me. I may not be a literary genius or an original thinker but most of what’s conveyed here you would never know about unless you attended all of the hours and hours of meetings I attend. You certainly wouldn’t read about it in the newspaper and if you did it would probably be wrong. In-depth budget discussion? Fleet Plans? Crime? M&T/BPOL discussions? Forget about it.
And it’s crazier than that: since most of this stuff isn’t in the paper at any level of detail, I’ve actually caused myself a fair degree of trouble by writing about it! Face it, if nobody knew the details about most of this stuff, my life would be a lot easier. We could run the City more like the Federal government. The negative part is that people who know nothing and don’t care to know anything about the subject at hand pop off nasty blog posts. For the past 5 years I’ve accepted that as the price of doing business. The ground rule has always been that you can say whatever you want about me but not anyone else.
Last night my daughter came to me. She had obviously been reading the blog and asked: “why are those people so nasty to you?” “Why do you put up with it?” “Why do people want the schools to suck?” “Don’t they remember the big layoffs 2 years ago?” “What are they thinking?” I answered that some of them weren’t thinking but I could tell she resented it. She resented the blog and the time it takes to write and moderate it – all at once. She’s seen the show up close and personal. She’s born the brunt of missed performances and meetings. She resented those who refuse to think and who foist their ignorant abuse on me. This, at last, was my breaking point. My line in the sand. It was simple of me to suspect that this abuse ended with me: it inevitably includes my family and that’s a price I’m not willing to pay.
So, as of this morning, the rules have changed. I won’t tolerate any more insults of any sort. No snark. no cute re-writes or comments. Many of you who have been buttholes in the past will find yourself already blacklisted and unable to comment. It’s an admission that our collective third-grade teachers were right: it only takes a couple of jerks to spoil it for everyone. To all who are unhappy with this, go open your own blog and keep it fresh for the next 5-6 years. Good luck and bon voyage.