Democracy at work

Thu, 06/06/2019 - 8:30pm

The crowd that gathered for the Town Council’s meeting on Monday night to speak about the Medical Center’s termination of Nurse Practitioner Liz Dyer was encouraging to see. It means that our democracy is at work, with people being given the chance to voice their concerns.

First Warden Ken Lacoste set the ground rules prior to the public comment portion of the meeting, noting that personally intended remarks should not be made. What transpired was a civil and enlightening discussion, with the supporters of Dyer politely voicing their feelings, while Dr. Mark Clark was allowed to share his thoughts as well.

No matter where you fall on the issue, it is encouraging that there is a forum where people can congregate to weigh in on the issues and hear what their fellow citizens have to say. That was never more apparent than on Monday when the Town Hall chamber was packed with the island community eager to participate in public discourse.

Resident Annie Hall, who spoke in support of Dyer, made a salient point while giving her thoughts. “I think a very telling thing is how many people are in this room. People typically only go to meetings when something is wrong. But there’s definitely something wrong, and that’s why this room is standing room only.”

Attendance at town meetings has been something that this Town Council has dedicated itself to encouraging. So, although it was inspiring to see so many people at Monday night’s meeting; it would be good to see more people in attendance throughout the year, even when something might not be wrong.

If that were the case, democracy would be in full effect, for the betterment of the people, and the island community at large.