My immediate reaction to the picture to the front page of the Opinion section of the Sept. 29 Augusta Chronicle was, “That is the Supreme Court in session.” But no, it was the Augusta Commission in session. Maybe I am the only one who reacted this way, but the headline was fitting: “It’s attitude.”
The picture shows the members of the commission seated in splendor, with considerable working space and technology between them, quite elevated on their platforms, and Mayor Deke Copenhaver with even more space around him!
Our public employees used to be called civil servants. Now, they sit on their kingly thrones looking down at the rest of us from a distance. They are widely spaced, so they do not have to be personally involved with one another. And the mayor is the grandest pooh-bah of them all!
No wonder they cannot meet the common good. They are all royalty wanting their own way. Their stations in the room show clearly their ranking. And they spend our taxes as tyrants always do.
Everywhere in the United States that is not a political center, especially Washington, D.C, is called “fly-over country.” Our Founding Fathers warned about aristocracy and royalty. Well, today we have both in spite of taxation with representation. Everywhere outside City Hall is Augusta’s “fly-over” country.
Form is not everything, but it is something, and highly influential. The commission should sit in that little box in the center and the people on the elevated platform. They would be closer to each other and in their proper position as servants. Yes, “It’s attitude,” but perhaps in a more important way than the editorial staff meant it to be. It might be better for all of us if they, and we, followed the advice on our coins: “In God we trust.” He only requires 10 percent; our governments have no limit.
Ed Payne, M.D.