“And In This Corner…”

When Muhammad Ali was preparing for a fight, he always promoted the battle by giving it a title such as, “The Thrilla In Manila” or “The Rumble In The Jungle”.  It reflected what was about to take place in the ring.  Perhaps the Orion Township Board of Trustees need to utilize a similar tactic when announcing their twice monthly meetings!

By way of background, there is a saying that epitomizes what happened the other night at the Trustees’ meeting: “Have you ever been to a fight and a hockey game breaks out?”  Well, guess what? Something similar happened at the Trustee meeting on July 5, 2016.  People who attended thinking that a professional, fact based discussion would be taking place instead witnessed an infantile, sophomoric, backbiting, vindictive, petty outburst.  In Mohammad Ali terms it was,  “The Un-Friendship In The Township!”

People who were present at the donnybrook or watched it on television were able to witness first hand a disgraceful, shameful, inglorious episode of politicians out of control!  It is no secret that based on previous meeting encounters with each of the Trustees, that this is a dysfunctional group of malcontents each hell-bent on promoting and pursuing their own personal agenda without, in many instances, the concern for residents of the community.  It is fair to state that this depiction does not reflect on all the members of the Board but the antics of most members still casts a pall on everyone.

At a previous meeting we witnessed threats to have a Trustee arrested.  During the most recent series of altercations at a meeting there was a discussion of outstanding work permits that may or not result in an “alleged underpayment of taxes” for one of the Trustees – a laborious discussion of how cash is collected and recorded at various events because of a $100 error in a recent transaction – misuse of an office e-mail on an election form resulting in a $3 refund to the Township – and my favorite, an inference that a candidate who punctuates  campaign signs with pink colors had pink flowers in the office which somehow was interpreted as a campaign infraction.  (Keep in mind this was part of the same crew that had a blatant campaign ad in the Lake Orion High School Graduation insert in the Lake Orion Review!  Probably not a campaign violation but a lack of sound judgement.)  And unlike Ali bouts that lasted ten rounds and perhaps an hour, this Trustee Board meeting skirmish lasted five hours and finally ended at 12:03AM!

Ladies and gentlemen of Lake Orion – this is what it has come to in the Township – a despicable example of why politicians locally, State-wide and nationally are held in such low esteem!  Let’s hope that at upcoming meetings the combatants, like us, have grown weary of another fisticuffs and will conduct themselves in a more professional manner and depart from the personal attacks on each other!  Just to be safe and if you plan to attend, you may want to bring some smelling salts and cotton swabs for the pugilists!

Bill Kalmar

Lake Orion resident