The City of Troy, New York, "Where Henry Hudson Turned Around."

Sunday, June 19, 2005


On Tuesday, June 14, the Troy City Council attempted to hold an informal meeting for the people of Troy, and Democratus was there.

The City Council holds two such meetings every year. The meetings are designed to be informal, so the citizens and the elected officials can have some give-and-take: have a real dialogue. Unfortunately, the crowd on Tuesday night was angry.

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City Council's informal meeting, June 14, 2005

The people who spoke seemed less interested in a conversation and more interested venting their real or perceived complaints against the city. In an editorial, The Record correctly points out that this was a missed opportunity. No one likes to be lectured. No one likes shouts and rants directed at them. If the people want elected officials to listen there are more effective ways to communicate such as, calmly stating your point, utilizing smoke signals or sign language. Ranting is just bad form.

However, some responses were enlightening. Someone complained that their requests for information were never answered. Corporation Counsel David Mitchell fielded that inquiry:

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"That's my responsibility," responded Mitchell. "I work
50 to 60 hours a week not responding to your requests. It's
very tiring."

Someone else demanded to know what Soylent Green was made of. Finally, someone demanded to know why there were no more informal meetings.

It was a completely useless evening. And Democratus enjoyed every minute of it!

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Democratus and friend at City Council meeting

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