Time for City Hall to Speak Up

22 thoughts on “Time for City Hall to Speak Up”

  1. Let’s not make more mountains out of molehills, Mike. The last thing we need is a De Blasio vs. the cops thing playing out here

    There’s a huge difference between fraught history of race relations and overly aggressive policing in places like New York City and Ferguson compared with Northampton. We just don’t have that kind of hostile resident-police relationship in our idyll. Most of those people shouting “F___ the police” likely have no first-hand experience of a bad run-ins with a police officer, especially if they’ve lived in Northampton all their charmed lives.

    That’s why I found it so jarring to hear Klein playing to the mob and shouting vulgarities at the rally. I’m surprised we accept the kind of behavior from a councilor. Even Al Sharpton on a bad day knows well enough to bite his tongue.

    Not only was it an embarrassing display, it wasn’t really that smart. I’m a little surprised she hasn’t just come forward and apologized for any offense to the local police and tried to better explain herself. By hiding in the bushes with the likes of Bill Dwight and the other professional demonstrator class in Northampton, she just makes herself seem a bit extreme.

    Maybe it’s a Ward 7 thing: councilors with the tendency to stick their foot in their mouth?

    1. Reading the Gazette you would think most people agree with Klein. I doubt it. People just to cowed by political correctness to offer opinions.
      I submit, if there is a reason for wanting to live in Northampton as opposed to Ferguson, MO whether you are white or black or whatever has little to do with the conduct of the police but everything to do with the conduct of the people in the community.
      Now there may be many injustices which caused Micheal Brown to rob a store, or go after a police officer; but at the end of the day the real danger to young black kids from what i know isn’t from the police but other black kids. It would be helpful if someone were to post the murder statistics of young black males and show this statement to be wrong or correct. The gazetee does a disservice and so do many of those who sent in commentary to the paper by not looking into those figures.
      You can’t solve problems by slinging mud; you first have to honestly face facts which might be painful. These days we are all struggling. klein wasn’t offering solutions, just the same old same old divisive mantras.

  2. Normally I am all for your perspective Kirby, but it seems quite off for you to be supporting the establishment and rallying against democracy and citizen action. I for one happen to agree with councilor, and am proud of her taking a stand.

    Not so much for your disdain of democracy and the right to assembly.

    1. Why does everything about this issue have to be so black and white?

      You can vociferously protest police violence and exercise your free speech rights without resorting to crudeness. I think that’s the point you are missing. Klein went to that rally as a representative of the city, not as a private citizen. I support her general point of view, but the instant she started dropping the F bomb and baying the crowd into shouting abuse at our decent cops in Northampton, I think it’s a problem and not the kind of dignified image our councilors should be projecting in public.

      I think she and her supporters should look to the example set by people like Dr. King as an example instead of playing to the Northampton cheap seats. We’ll get a lot farther if we keep our heads cool rather than give the “establishment” any justification to ignore our broader message.

    2. And we can see how well King’s message of unity has played out in the decades since his assassination. No thanks, I approve of not just her message, but her delivery and tactics. It certainly managed to grab the attention of those who post here, so it certainly appears apt and pertinent as well as an effective means of bringing attention to the issue.

      As for alleged “crudeness”, good thing that is also protected free speech, your attempts to regulate legal conduct of citizens to what you personal find acceptable is downright totalitarian and scary.

      And, it certainly is a black and white situation, you legally have the right to freedom of assembly and freedom of speech, and don’t ever allow anyone with a watered down appreciation of democracy to steal it in the name of “civility” or “crudeness”

    3. Gregory, I love your passion. But your patronizing tone sounds like so many rigid people I’ve bumped into in Northampton since I moved here from New York, where I’ve participated in more rallies and marches than you can shake a stick at. It’s like you guys want to invite the racial strife and social problems NYC has just so you have something to protest about up here! Of course all of us enjoy freedom of speech, but when you’re a public representative of Northampton, like Klein, you have a duty to present yourself with a level head and not get whipped up into a frenzy throwing red meat to the crowd. That’s the issue here — Klein’s temperament and instincts — not whether she or others have the right to assemble. Thank goodness one of those kids in the crowd didn’t do something stupid like strike a cop or create a riot. Trust me, I’ve seem this happen first hand, and you don’t want to be on the receiving end of a baton.

      One more thing — god bless Northampton. Greg, you just don’t know how lucky we all are to live in a peaceful, decent place where all the police tensions and other crap other communities have to contend with are absent here.

    4. I find it amusing that you consider me rigid, and even more amusing that you consider that a bad thing somehow?

      Rigid people are people will brook no intolerance, injustice, or act of evil and call it out. Rigid people are those who take a stand to stop crimes when they see them, help a neighbor stand up to bullies, participate in rallies and the democratic process to help make our world a better place. Rigid people goto war to liberate other oppressed peoples, and vote consistently to better our governmental system.

      Sounds like you are advocating for capitulation, which inevitably leads to apathy and destruction.

      If only we could hope that more of the populace was rigid, it would be a far more interesting and better place in which we live.

    5. You can’t have a reality-based discussion with people like Gregory, and I would guess the same is true of several of those people who attended the public comment period in support of Alisa Klein. To my ears, they sound like the American Taliban. Fervent believers who view the world in stark black and white and delude themselves into thinking we have a race war raging in Northampton. They, of course, are fighting on the side of Righteousness.

      It’s so patronizing. When you have to call out to Pelham to get a single black man to give comments, you know they are grasping at straws. They can’t think of anything else productive to do but instigate conflicts that just don’t currently exist in this city, and thank goodness for that.

      To my fellow voters in Northampton: Please pay attention! This is the kind of circus we can expect if Bill Dwight ever becomes mayor of this city: ignoring the real-life needs and problems of the struggling working and middle classes who keep this city safe and stable and sucking up to the ivory tower crowd living in an imaginary racial war zone.

    6. Talk about narcissism for a nefarious purpose, ending the free exchange of ideas. People like “anonymous” are the exact type of troll we need to ban on the internet.

      Do you think you will get a salient discussion or debate? Wrong, they conveniently fail to provide a single peer reviewable/verifiable fact to any argument. They speak in platitudes and feelings, not facts. When confronted with true facts, they go down tangents to distract you from the lack of substance their comments show, and will not respond to direct requests for debate or discussion.

      Look at the deplorable conduct above by “anonymous”. He immediately attacks my style and forms of expression, rather than addressing assertion directly, goes out of his way to make non statements and platitudes that add nothing to the conversation.

      What it comes down to is this, “Anonymous” here wants to stifle the debate, trounce on democracy and overall subvert the American governmental process. Especially telling is his reference to the Taliban when discussing the concept of the bill of rights and the constitution.

      Don’t fall prey to his tactics of stirring up a non-controversy to divert your attention from the real issues at hand.

      Well, traitor to democracy, your subterfuge will not go unanswered. Should you wish to act like an adult and debate the merits of the case with facts, I shall be waiting and eagerly anticipate the opportunity.

      Regular readers of Kirby will clearly recognize non speak and misdirection when they see it, and will not be victimized by it. Nice Try.

      Your call coward, time to step up.

    7. well greg-since noone seems to care for your long winded blabbering-i guess thats what a lot of”transplanted new yawkers who just can make it in new york city so they come to the pioneer valley to push their arrogant attitudes from the big city in small towns”trashtalk-weve already forgotten what youve said 1 second after youve said it-as they say in new york-‘weve forgotten you like you never existed-in a new york minute:)”go talk to yourself while looking in your mirror at your house-youre the only one listening to you-the rest of us find you boring and a windbag:)

    1. im a hamp high graduate and classmate of andy trushaw.hes a great guy,hard working,trustworthy and a decent person.his opinion matters.he worked for the city as a cop for a long time.he was one of the better ones.never pushy or arrogant,always respectful and hed try to defuse a situation and talk to someone ,rather than just slap the cuffs on them or arrest them.hed listen to people and not judge them.he deserves to be treated with respect.hes from a good family born and raised all their years in northampton. who taught him the value of compassion and being fair to people.northampton has gotten so out of control recently politically and fundementally -the town doesnt seem to know what its doing anymore,either handling money,controversies,or even knowing how to run the town anymore.longtime residents like andy know the city better than most and have a right to their opinion without getting jumped on verbally by people because they dont agree with what anyone in the upper echelons think.the whole city is a real mess these days-stormwater fee,bid,money wasting on overrides etc-i wish it was like it was growing up-a town of familes,jobs,no richie riches from new york turning it in to new york west-the whole city forgot its begiinnings to sell its soul to anyone with a buck or anyone with a cause that wants to flap their lips on city hall steps to instigate a riot or a violent response with words designed to inflame but not to educate at all.

  3. I don’t think anyone is trying to deny her the right to free speech. I agree with the previously posted sentiment that the minute the violent speech started, she had a responsibility, as a councilor and representative of the city, (you can’t take that coat off just because you are not in session), to either address the crowd and decry the violent speech directed at the police, (Fuck the police is just one of several verbal assaults), or remove herself from the gathering. By doing neither, she endorsed the behavior. Richard Marsh

    1. Except, in a reading of the city council charter, it does not list your assertions as either compulsory conduct on the part of the councilor, nor does it indicate a requirement to abridge speech that others may find fault with.

    2. go back to new york gregory-you always sound constipated,hateful and just plain pissed at everyone and anyone who doesnt agree with your narrow view of the world.blah blah blah-you talk about things-yet say nothing:)

  4. Amusing as always that your paint facts with your personal emotions. Try to understand the world from a literal point of view.

    I can clearly tell you an adherent to the principle of keep blathering your own opinion until those with facts tire of your antics.

    Well, other than your pedantic name-calling, do you even have a salient point or are you against all speech you personal disagree with and want suppressed?

    For the record, life long valley resident, which is why I KNOW my rights and the constitution and no amount of trolling is going to paint you in anything less than an anti-American light.

    1. greg you aint all there in the noodle-thats why all the commenters here call you “greg the wackadoodle””gregory peckery”or”greg the conspiracy theorist”talk to yourself while looking in the mirror greg-that face you see-yours-is the only one listening to you-the rest of us just think your a loud mouth blowhard who speaks buts says nothing:)

    2. i know my rights,i know my rights and i know the constitution,as gregs babbaling went on and on and on,as he stared in the mirror at himself-realizing that the only one listening to gregs narcississtic rants-was only greg himself.the rest of us see him as needing some serious menatl health help.cmon greg go talk to a mental health professional-hell give you some meds for those long winded rants you go on.you can teel the doctor”i know my rights!”:)

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