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Friday, May 28, 2010

Democracy Got In The Way Of Tyranny

Despite the very good news coming out of the Rock County Board meeting last night, I'm still not overly confident in a local democracy when it wins almost by accident. That was such the case at the board's meeting when an amendment to the resolution originally meant to abolish the elective and administrative aspects of the county coroner's office superceded the resolution when it passed by a 17 - 11 margin. The vote tally was solid.

The amendment, effectively placed a referendum on November's ballot, will place the fate of the coroner's office in the hands of county voters instead of the county board or a select panel to politicize an appointment. The caveat is that the referendum is not binding, which means the results in November will serve as little more than an opinion poll. A definite step forward but not an end-all to the seemingly endless barrage of misguided and vicious attacks against the current coroner made supposedly to change the office into an appointed medical examiner's. Strange ways indeed.

It's important to keep in mind that several other county offices share the identical elective, administrative and professional qualities as the coroner's and yet have been mysteriously absent from this discussion. So yes, the campaign to wrest the office away has been little more than a deceptively played personal attack against the coroner first and politically motivated second.

Without mentioning any names here, several board members during the meeting finally made the moral imperative to speak out and change the tyrannical course of the authoritarian bloc of board members. For this they deserve applause, but nothing speaks louder than the beautiful folks who showed up to fill the stands yet again to defend one of our most sacred constitutional rights - the right to vote.

The only thing left to watch for now is whether some phony "we the people" group will organize to defeat the will of the people for the November ballot.

Lastly, once again the Janesville Gazette played a covert role by neglecting to inform their subscribing citizenry of this important county board meeting. Excluding a blog posting by their ironically named "We the people" blogger, (who actually wrote in favor of stripping away the "people's" right) the Gazette staff did not offer even a brief before the scheduled meeting. Imagine having a major sports event or playoff game in Janesville without one word of it mentioned in the hard copy before the game, yet they publish the results of the game as front page headlines. That is exactly what the Gazette did.

It was as if they wanted the stands to be empty.

Channel 3000, "Rock County residents to vote on Coroner Issue."

Downgraded To Medium

PS, have a safe and fun Memorial Day Weekend.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I would like to thank all the voters who called, sent emails, and came to the Rock County Board meeting on May 27 to speak up for their right to vote for a Coroner. Our message was loud and clear, and the Supervisors decided to listen. This fall we will get to decide how we want our government to serve us, the citizens of this county, by voting on a referendum.
I am running for Coroner again this November, and again you will be able to choose the best candidate to serve your family, friends, and neighbors during one of the most difficult times of our lives. As a Registered Nurse, I have been helping patients and families cope with illness, grief, and tough decisions throughout my career. When I became a forensic nurse and a certified medicolegal death investigator, I took the skills, compassion, and knowledge from my nursing career to the Coroner’s Office. The office was broken and neglected, and I rebuilt it. The office now follows the national guidelines for death investigations and serves the citizens with pride.
I am proud of what we have built together, and we have great plans for the future. I hope to continue to serve as your Coroner, and thank you for your ongoing trust and support.

Jenifer Keach, RN, FNDI, D-ABMDI
Rock County Coroner

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