If we have nothing in this country, we have our democracy. In spite of county
officials equating dissent with Nazis or drunks, the will of the people will prevail, good or bad. This fundamental notion escaped the Los Osos CSD from the start and still escapes the remaining three
directors. Director Gustafson and his
mallet, the admonishment that public speakers "shall" do this or submit that, threats of clearing a room when something doesn't suit them, and stationing guards,
are all responsible for the incivility seen at some of these meetings. Prior to electing two new directors, the CSD board would
sit and listen to public comment with the same blank stare you see on frozen trout. Speakers received a condescending pat-on-the-head thank you, and were sent on
their way. As long as the public accepted this, the board was happy in their delusions of grandeur.
Contrary to what director Gustafson believes, the positioning of a guard at the meetings does not stop incivility, it provokes it. As Norman Risch said in his letter, maybe the newfound civility at the meetings is a new sense of public representation on the board.
All great accomplishments in this country have grown from seeds of dissent and incivility. Guards, government, and Brown Act be damned, our democracy works. Just ask Gray Davis and Ernie Dalidio.