Today: Jan 23 , 2019

Opinion: Political Correctness Moves Fast When It Has Allies
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13 December 2018  

"Somehow free speech is seen as a threat."

Dear Editor:

So let me get this straight, David Stringer gets invited to a lecture at ASU that included a discussion on the effects of race and demographics on voting patterns. After the lecture he is followed into an elevator by students that have a hidden recording devise that preceded to ask him leading questions and even provide him answers that he must refute. The Phoenix New Times runs an article and immediately the following happens.

Councilwomen Billie Orr violates open meeting law and contacts the other council members by phone and polls them on taking action against Stringer. (Which she admitted as a mistake in open session so she gets a pass.)

The Prescott Council drafts a proclamation asking for Stringer's resignation and holds a special meeting where they all give speeches viewing themselves as social justice warriors without allowing ANY public comment. The accused is not invited to speak on his own behalf and not one of them even bothered to call or contact Representative Stringer to check the validity of the claims against him.

The County Attorney takes to twitter to air her disgust and demand his removal. Stringer's signature issue is criminal justice reform because we are imprisoning way too many citizens for small non-violent crimes. Apparently she does not support Stringer’s ideas of criminal justice reform.

The Fire Chief of the Central Arizona Fire and Medical Authority calls for a boycott of PrescotteNews because Stringer is part owner. This is the only publication that has been reporting on the shenanigans going on with the fire district board and the Chief himself. That is probably just a coincidence though.

The Humboldt Unified School District bans him from all district properties. Somehow free speech is seen as a threat. It just happens that Stringer was one of the few that did not roll over during the Red for Ed protest funded by national unions. (He did vote for the pay raise for teachers, however.)

The Republican Women of Prescott leadership publish an email bashing Stringer without polling their membership that just elected him a month ago with 67,000 votes making him the second highest vote getter in the state.

The leader of the Republican Party in Yavapai County, who just months ago was disgusted with the treatment of Judge Kavenaugh and the lack of due process, takes to social media to attack Stringer.

The leader of the State Republican Party, who just watched his party get spanked during the last election, picks up his torch of condemnation. The Governor and head of the House of Representatives strip Stringer of committee assignments.

Local Democrats organize private, invitation-only meetings to further shred the carcass of an elephant left behind by an unwise herd.

Many of the people above and some in the shadows are angry that their hand-picked and dark-money supported candidate for his office was resoundingly rejected by the voters. The Democrats and Democrats pretending to be Republicans hate that he believes in smaller government and lower taxes. In short, ”He is not a member of the club.” 

They don’t like that he speaks the truth in order to find answers, so they send their minions to corner him with secret recording devices and try to lead him into bad sound bites. Any intelligent person who has read the transcripts recongnizes that this was a total set up. As hard as they tried to entrap him, it’s their words that should be condemned not his. When the student says,”Because we have black people in our military?” Stringer responds ,”No, I didn’t say that. Sir, don’t put words in my mouth now.” but that was exactly their task, to put words in his mouth.

This is what I do know about David Stringer. As an attorney in DC and Maryland he defended African Americans and other minority groups by donating thousands of hours of legal services. When Zena Mitchell, a African American Prescott lady was being racially harassed by a neighbor and could not find any local lawyer to represent her, Stringer took the case for free. He even put his own money into the case and won in favor of Zena. His signature issue in the legislature, criminal justice reform, would greatly help minorities as they are disproportionately incarcerated. Are these the actions of a racist?

I went to the meeting in councill chambers and listened to each member give their speech. After reading the fact that we are "all created equal” one member talked about his adopted Native American children and another about his Philippine and Native Hawaiian relatives. These comments prove that, although we are indeed created equal, even the condemners see their own family as different. 

That's called America and until we accept that we do recognize the differences, and that visual appearances do affect how we interact, we will never truly move forward. Are there large sections of South Phoenix that are almost all Hispanic? Yes. On the other side of town is Anthem mostly White? Yes. The question is why are we self-segregating?

Stringer's biggest problem is he is not afraid to ask the question to further conversation on the issue to achieve understanding. When a councilperson goes home to her gated community in the mostly White Prescott Lakes is she self-segregating? Is she a racist? No. When the Mayor sees his adopted children as different is he wrong? No, he is bringing loving care to children in need. When many of the council attended the Courthouse lighting but not one attended the lighting of the menorah, does that mean they are anti-semantic? No. 

The councilman who surprised me the most was Steve Blair. He knows what it's like to have words taken out of context and be painted as a racist on a national level. The dissenting vote was the only one I agreed with, and since then, that councilman has been vilified. He basically stated that changing election results was not an issue to be dealt with by the council. There are tools in place such as political recall that any citizen of the state can take.  It sets a dangerous precedent moving forward. Who’s next? Will the council attack a school board member, county supervisor, U.S. Representative, President or will an ordinary citizen feel their wrath coming down from the soapbox? 

What is happening to Representative Stringer is what I call the Jesus syndrome. Everyone is with you until someone turns and accuses you on behalf of your enemies, then they scatter and claim they never knew you. 

Chris Kuknyo
Prescott Arizona