By Renee Hartley
We can always count on the dysfunction of the Dallas County Commissioners Court for entertainment. Especially in these times of ideological shifts and tight budgets. But over the past few weeks I have watched in amazement as the Court has turned into even more of a spectacle than usual.
The untimely departure of Bruce Sherbet, Dallas County Elections Administrator, has been a catalyst for all sorts of political activism. I am someone who is always pleased when people pay attention to their government. This is democracy. Whatever your ideology, I think we can agree that debate is good. No one side has a monopoly on good ideas.
Well, much to my disappointment the debate has become less about accountability and more about racism and hatred. I sat in disbelief as I listened to Commissioner John Wiley Price addressed repeatedly as “chief mullah.” While the term does not strike me as particularly racist, it was clearly meant to be disrespectful and was totally out of order in Commissioner’s Court. However, I was further shocked to hear Commissioner Price respond in the manner in which he did.
According to his website Commissioner Price “has become notorious for his vision, his vigor and his veracity”. Alliteration aside, he’s certainly notorious. Some people seem to think that he was “provoked” into responding the way he did. I’m not sure what that means or how it’s an excuse.
Are we to believe that Commissioner Price is incapable of controlling himself when confronted? That he has some sort of affliction that renders inoperable his ability to reason? Or do we give him a pass because of his bravado? Because of his willingness to “go there” with people, when we don’t have the guts to do so. I don’t know.
What I do know is we once again find ourselves in the aftermath of name-calling, inappropriate reactions, and protests and not one step closer to making Dallas County better.
Renee Hartley is a Wife, Mother and political consultant. When she’s not working on local campaigns, she’s most likely watching football. Renee can be reached at renee.hartley@4MField.com or follow her on twitter @reneehartley.