Taunting the Electorate: The Reality of Meier’s New Addison

Taunting the Electorate:
The Reality of Meier’s New Addison
By Susan M. Halpern
Former Addison Councilmember (1992-1999)

 This week, my neighborhood was taunted by a sitting councilmember.  This is the sad reality of the state of Addison’s government.

On Thursday, as early voting continued, a sign appeared on the wall that currently buffers my neighborhood and Towne Lake from Belt Line Road.  It’s the same wall that was the focus of a great deal of protest from all of us regarding the Sam’s redevelopment.  It’s the same wall that Meier and his cadre voted to remove, despite overwhelming opposition to its removal.  Suffice it to say that the impending demise of this important buffer is a very sore subject amongst my neighbors.

In fact, the whole redevelopment and the experience of those of us who vocally opposed this project are sore subjects.  At the first very overcrowded meeting at Town Hall, Meier rubbed our noses in it, conducting a lengthy, one-sided faux trial examination of staff, by way of claiming that we’d missed opportunities to voice our opposition earlier.  At the second meeting Meier told us to listen up, because according to him there were facts we just didn’t know.  In Meier’s world, you are either with him, or you are “uninformed.”  And of course, that night concluded with a clearly pre-scripted motion that was unquestionably prepared prior to hearing all the concerns voiced at the meeting.  Clearly, our voices were not heard.

So I guess it shouldn’t surprise any of us that councilmember Dale Wilcox chose to place a GIANT sign on this very wall that was the focal point of all the unrest, touting the incumbents who voted for its removal.  It was an “IN YOUR FACE” move.  A claim of territory.  A message that he is part of Meier’s cadre and that they “own” this Town, and will run it as they damn well please.

And, to rub salt in the wound, Wilcox added: “The right candidates and vision for all of Addison, not just one neighborhood.”  Boom Towne Lake!  Boom Midway Meadows! We don’t care what you and your neighbors think or want!  Even if it’s literally at the end of your block!  Boom!  We did it to you once, and we’ll do it again!  Boom, you ignorant residents!!

How outrageous that any sitting councilmember would feel comfortable disrespecting Addison’s residents this way, taunting them because their significant and vocal protests were unsuccessful.  The attitude that believed this sign to be appropriate evidences far deeper problems.  The “new” Addison is a dictatorial regime, and one consequence of that is that some buy in to the abuse of power, benefit from it, and find that they actually enjoy the view.  For these folks, personal gain becomes more important than the obvious harm all these tactics cause to the democratic institution.  It’s the same twisted rationale that condones the parade of lies and misrepresentations Meier and his cadre have been circulating in an effort to improperly influence the current election.

So, shame on you, Dale Wilcox.  You weren’t elected to taunt the electorate.  Doing so is a disrespect not only to Addison, but to everyone who ever fought for our form of government.

Addison can and must DEMAND more from its elected officials.