Tuesday, April 10, 2012

This blog was created as an information distribution point in the ongoing effort to recall John Cook, the Mayor of El Paso, Texas. This blog is where info will be passed on as to the dates, times and locations where concerned citizens can sign petitions. I am also soliciting volunteers to help get signatures for the petitions. Anyone wishing to volunteer or contact me for any reason can reach me at recallepmayor@gmail.com  I will not accept any monetary or in kind contributions. I will only accept help in legally obtaining signatures on the petitions. I am initiating this recall as a private citizen and not as a member of any organization. Also, I do not speak for anyone but myself. Contrary to what our Mayor and several of our city council members have said about those who support a recall of the Mayor, I am not a bigot or a hate monger. I am an average citizen. I retired from the Army a couple of years ago after serving over 30 years in defense of our great nation. I have served on the DMZ in Korea, in Germany during the Cold War as well as in Kosovo,  Iraq and Afghanistan. I have seen what happens to people who have lost any voice in how they are governed and I refuse to stand by and allow that to happen here. At least not without a challenge. No matter how people feel about the referendum that overturned the domestic partner benefits, it was done legally and in accordance with the city charter. It was also upheld by a judge on appeal. If the Mayor and four City Council Members can disregard the vote of the citizens of El Paso once, the question has to be asked , "what will they do next?" Abraham Lincoln said ours is "a government of the people, by the people and for the people." It is not a government "of the few, by the few and for the few." The Mayor has said that overturning the referendum was the right thing to do because other city workers besides domestic partners would have lost their health coverage also. That is disingenuous at best. The law that allows the city council to overturn an ordinance, Article III,Section 3.9, C.3. states: the city council may amend, extend, or repeal any ordinance previously adopted. If the referendum had unintended consequences, Mayor and City Council should have respected the will of the voters, leaving in place the repeal of the domestic partner benefits and amending the ordinance to eliminate the unintended consequences. That would have been the right thing to do.  This is not an anti homosexual issue and it is not an anti John Cook issue. It is an issue where the incumbent used the position of his office to further an agenda that he was not voted into office to pursue and that the voters of El Paso soundly rejected at the ballot box.  A little known fact many people are not aware of is the referendum the voters approved that overturned the domestic partner benefits had the highest percentage of registered voters participating than any non presidential election in years. A higher percentage voted in that referendum than voted for Governor, U.S. Congress or our municipal elections. As a matter of fact, more El Pasoans voted for the referendum that voted for the Mayor and all City Council Members combined. This information can be verified by going to the El Paso city government elections website. Again, this is contrary to what many people have been saying, including some in our local media. I would like to conclude this post with two thoughts. The first is a quote from English philosopher Edmund Burke who said, ‘The only thing necessary for the triumph [of evil] is for good men to do nothing.’ All one has to do is look around and see this is just as true today as it was in Edmund Burke's day. Violence has exploded across our border in Mexico and within our own country. You cannot turn on the news or pick up a paper and not find a story about a shooting or some other horrific event. Additionally, I have seen more stories of corruption here in El Paso in the last couple of years I have lived here than I could ever have imagined. It's time for good people to stand for what is right and defend our democratic republic. It may not be perfect but it's the best thing going this side of Heaven and it is definitely worth defending. The second thought is a story shared by Dr. Erwin Lutzer,Pastor of Moody Church for 30 years, wrote a book entitled “When A Nation Forgets God.” In his book, Dr. Lutzer shared an account from an eyewitness of how some church members reacted to the Nazism of their times:
“I lived in Germany during the Nazi Holocaust. I considered myself a Christian. We heard stories of what was happening to Jews, but we tried to distance ourselves from it because what could we do to stop it. A railroad track ran behind our small church and each Sunday morning we could hear the whistle in the distance, and then the wheels coming over the tracks. We became disturbed when we heard the cries coming from the train as it passed by. We realized that it was carrying Jews like cattle in the cars. Week after week the whistle would blow. We dreaded to hear the sound of those wheels because we knew that we would hear the cries of the Jews in route to a death camp. Their screams tormented us. We knew the time the train was coming, and when we heard the whistle blow, we began singing hymns. By the time the train came past our church, we were singing at the top of our voices. If we heard the screams, we sang more loudly and soon we heard them no more.” And then the eyewitness shared with Pastor Lutzer, “ Although years have passed, I still hear the train whistle in my sleep. God forgive me, forgive all of us who called ourselves Christians and yet did nothing to intervene.”
Now I want to make it very clear that I am NOT saying, nor am I implying, that John Cook, Suzy Byrd or Steve Ortega are Nazis or that they are mean evil or diabolical people, because I do not believe they are. But I do believe their actions in overturning the voter-approved referendum designed to rescind the tax-payer funded benefits for domestic partners of city employees is very detrimental to the citizens of El Paso and an abuse of the offices they were elected to and I cannot just stand by and allow it to happen. I refuse to just sing louder. 

1 comment:

  1. Mike - How do I sign on to your recall effort?
    Please contact me at urbisoler@aol.com

    Paul Daniggelis
    El Paso, Texas