The title of this post was inspired by this fantastic Beach Boys song. Enjoy the video. It's also the earbug that goes through my head when I think of the aftermath of CB-9. Namely, the 3-2 passage of the bill Monday night, the ensuing announcement by the County Executive that he would veto the legislation, and the statement by Councilman Jon Weinstein as to why he opposed, and will continue to oppose the legislation.
The "heroes" of this experience are hard to identify. What, you say? How is Hero #1 obviously NOT County Executive Kittleman? And how is Villain #1 obviously NOT calvinball County Councilman Calvin Ball? Well, the political ramifications of this bill not being enacted have yet to be felt. And who knows when and if they will be? As noted on these pages, this bill did come about as a result of a specific request at last December's "Speak Up, Stand Up Howard" event. Howard County was implored to become a sanctuary county, as I recall, before Federal ICE agents rounded up undocumented immigrants and send them back to where they came from. Although the bill never was intended, nor could it have, superceded Federal law, it certainly seemed of grave importance to the immigrant community-- legal as well as not-- who attended both that event and the "OneHoward" event a couple weeks prior. And, as I wrote, if it so deeply affects the people who would benefit or suffer by this bill's enactment or not-- I decided to support it.
Now, if the immigrant community's fears do not wind up coming true, come, say, two years from now, that would play to Kittleman's advantage. But, if there is random and subjective treatment of illegal immigrants in Howard County, if families are split apart, kids torn out of schools, people who contribute to the community are sent away with no notice-- that is another thing altogether. This will be actually what the supporters of this bill foresaw. Especially if local authorities play a part in these things happening. Certainly then, in that case, the roles of hero and villain will be reversed. So don't come at me with your conventional wisdom. I throw all that nonsense up in your face and say, "Phooey on youie, Louie!"
No, I see no heroes in this, quite frankly. Except maybe the people who had the guts to have their voices heard those two long nights. And who did so without acting like total jerks, so that eliminates a lot of one side of the discussion. And there are two villains here in the aftermath of the CB-9 defeat. One group (maybe a class), and one individual. Both who stand wrongly accused. And with regard to both, I strongly urge caution to the community before passing judgement.
First, the illegal immigrant community in Howard County. Don't blame Calvin Ball and Jen Terrasa for going wackadoodle and submitting this abohorrent legislation that makes our apple pie taste bitter and make Lee Greenwood's voice break during "God Bless the USA". This bill came from that community. So for those of you out there who are sore winners and who still going after one or the other (or both) of these Councilpeople, cut it out. Your problem is really with the immigrant community. So own it and check yourselves. And, incidentally-- still waiting to find out about all these horrible crimes that illegal immigrants in Howard County have perpetrated. All the murders, all the rapes, all that.
The person who's taken way too much heat on this, who people frankly now need to lay off of and chill over, is Councilman Jon Weinstein. Yes, he voted against the bill. Yes, he voted the other way than they way I would have voted, and than how I felt. So, below is embedded his statement on CB-9:
I can not think of another time, in 32 years of being politically involved in this county, where another local elected official issued such an extensive statement. Which, additionally, is well thought-out and superbly articulated as well-- regardless of whether you agree with his position. From my read, and my understanding, this is an issue that Councilmember Weinstein cares about a great deal, and doubtless to this observer that this vote was very difficult for him to cast.
And, lest we forget the issues that Jon has tackled in his first two-plus years on the Council? Such as, school board election by district, which just passed the Howard County Delegation and is on its way to consideration by the full General Assembly? Or, public financing of local campaigns, on which he also worked? Oh, and then there's the small matter of the flood that hit Ellicott City last July. Yeah, other than those three things, and others on which he's been supportive (gun bill on County property, folks?) he has been absolutely terrible. NOT!
Yet, I read in the ensuing days after the vote on Cb-9 that "some real Democrat ought to run against Weinstein in the primary" and stuff like that. I'm not going to tell anybody to like his vote on CB-9-- if you don't like it, you don't like it. But I find his opposition to this legislation to be rooted in principle. And you can disagree with Jon on principle. (Pretty sure there's a lot of people reading this blog post who are about to disagree with me on principle too!) But don't blast Jon as not being a "real Democrat".
Let's not forget-- District 1 is one the Republicans will be coming for hard in 2018. For those of you reading this who think Jon's not a "real Democrat", it would take less than you might think for a "real Republican" to be in that seat instead. Then see how many bills about guns and sugary drinks and all that stuff that you'll get that person to support.
Frankly, I believe the Weinstein Villification will serve a duration of months if not weeks. Jon Weinstein's a hard worker-- already doing great work on behalf of his constituents and all Howard Countians in terms of trying to get BWI noise reduced-- and I know plenty about politics to know that today's zero easily becomes tomorrow's hero. And the other way around. I have no doubt that this will happen in his case.
Well, I've pissed off every side of the aisle tonight. Just not the middle! But no one sits in the middle.
Let's be careful out there.
#cb9 #hocopolitics #hococouncil #onehoward #StandUpSpeakUp