Letter: Criticism – a reality of political office

Re: Tony Rykes’ contribution to last week’s papers.

Ken Starchuk and I had committed many years of service to this community and the valley. We have had our share of critics, and supporters, over the years and we learned much from both. As elected officials, it was expected that we would get criticism. We also knew that we would be voted out one day and our tenure would come to an end. That’s the way politics works. But now that we are no longer in office, and are in a position to comment on local government shenanigans and mistakes, we are on the receiving end of some self-righteous indignation from those who can’t take the heat. For those who take offence at political criticism… don’t be naive… politics is not like elementary school where everyone gets a ribbon and a pat on the back for participating. If you make mistakes, or do stupid crap, you will be brought to task, and you should expect that to happen.

With regard to the new McBride council, they made it very clear that they did NOT want or need any help from former council or administration. The mayor campaigned on her extensive “20 years of local government experience” and 3 councillors, with little or no government experience at all, thought they should be in charge. The voters agreed that change was needed and a new council was elected fair and square. They must now follow the rules and endure the consequences of holding office. They will have to forge ahead in spite of mistakes and criticism. So far, what they may lack in political savvy, they make up for by being tenacious. There has been a whirl-wind of activity and it has been amusing to watch.

Thank you, Tony, for the “retirement” advice. Now that I have been “de-elected,” I have made good use of my new found extra time to pursue many activities. Watching the collective antics of the new council is only one of them. I appreciate the support, and even the criticism, I received over the 18 years I served, for it provided a very rewarding experience and a very important lesson… “If you don’t want to be criticized for doing stupid stuff… then quit doing stupid stuff.” Words to live by.

Mike Frazier
McBride

Did you know the Goat could not operate without people buying the newspaper? Subscribe today!