Monday, September 16, 2013

Select Board Rejects 9/11 Flag Question

 My view from the hot seat.  John Musante, Stephanie just-say-no O'Keeffe

UPDATE:  Tuesday 5:00 PM:
AP picks up the 9/11 flag flap story.  Again.
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The Amherst Select Board voted unanimously (5-0) tonight to reject a citizen voter petition reqesting they allow local voters to settle once and for all the nagging annual question of whether the commemorative American flags should fly in the downtown every 9/11 vs once every five years.

Yes, I said UNANIMOUSLY REJECTED.  Only in Amherst.

56 comments:

Walter Graff said...

Not the end Larry. We'll use the media and other means to continuously make the town look stupid although they do that pretty well themselves.

Anonymous said...

AOL Search? That's not something you normally associate with a non-senior citizen/Macbook owner.

Larry Kelley said...

Actually I use Google exclusively for search. And Firefox browser.

I had open my AOL mail account in case anyone wanted to send me last second advice, like the twitter follower who sent a DM saying "Now don't antagonize them."

I do say to folks when giving out my AOL email address (Amherstac@aol.com) that it shows how long I've been on the web.

Anonymous said...

These people have something wrong with them. This pattern of disregard for the symbol of our country is akin to Traschen's opinion of our flag. Richard Marsh

Larry Kelley said...

Yeah, Jennie sure was there in spirit.

Anonymous said...

Shame on them! I for one won't be "selecting" any of them in the future.

Larry Kelley said...

Yes, during the "discussion" I did mention that both Ms. O'Keeffe and Ms. Stein seats are up this coming election.

So all it would take is for ONE of them to be replaced by a citizen who embraces and appreciates the American flag.

Anonymous said...

On Larry Kelley's terms

"settle once and for all"

means getting his way

The term "settle" is not in his vocabulary

Larry Kelley said...

Not my way, CAN.

The will of the voters way.

Anonymous said...

How telling that you resort to name calling when your intransigence is called to task.

Larry Kelley said...

Just telling it like it is, as I always do, CAN.

Dale said...

How is it that a protester that is against everything the flag stands for can be heard loud and clear, but people like myself that back the flag fall to deaf ears? I am always saddened when I hear flag bashing individuals crying out every time an opportunity comes to fly the flags. Amherst is not a melting pot of acceptance that it touts itself to be. It is more of a liberal version of my way or the highway. These people have a great way of stuffing their opinions down your throat, but heaven forbid you should question anything they represent.

Anonymous said...

We have a giant flag right on the corner of common next to the intersection. We fly that at half-mast on 9/11. Stop painting this as flag haters.

Larry Kelley said...

On the night of September 10, 2001 only 12 hours before the first plane struck, the Amherst Select Board heard a UMass professor testify, "The flag is a symbol of terrorism, and death, and fear and destruction."

Two weeks ago on my Facebook page another Amherst residents agreed saying, "It is a symbol of terrorism, death, fear, and destruction."

Anonymous said...

So we have TWO people out of 25,000 making those comments and then you make the leap to say that all of Amherst feels that way? Really?

Larry Kelley said...

Never said all of Amherst feels that way. I'm certain they do not.

But the Select Board is giving in to that despicable attitude with their current policy.

Easy way to find out how a MAJORITY of Amherst feels is to simply put it on the ballot.

Tom McBride said...

Like it or not, what was the reasoning given for the no vote, and who were the people who gave it?

Larry Kelley said...

To be perfectly honest Tom, they didn't really give a (good) reason.

Just that's it's not important enough for them.

Ironically that meeting probably went three hours total and covered dozens of issues, yet the only thing reported in today's major newspapers is the 9/11 flag issue.

Anonymous said...

Yay!!! Justice was served!

Anonymous said...

I find the intolerance on this blog for anyone who expresses their patriotism in a way that does not include the flag to be decidedly unpatriotic.

Dr. Ed said...

History repeats itself -- The Amherst "Select" Board votes against America concurrent with yet another act of terrorism in Dc. Wonderful timing, folks...

OK, I think it is time to start going after them on censorship basis -- First Amendment and the principles of "Content Neutrality" and a "Public Forum."

First, they can either fly the flag (a) on all days, (b) on no days, or (c) on all days meeting some objective & content neutral criteria such as a Congressional designation of day the flag should be flown. To do otherwise is to exercise content judgment over speech -- which they are not permitted to do.

Second, as they are declaring the lightpoles NOT to be a "public forum", they must prohibit anyone else from using them as such -- and start arresting everyone who posts a flier, having the police investigate who is behind the various fliers and prosecute them, etc.

Otherwise, again, they are violating the content neutrality obligation.

Of course the ACLU should be involved, and there are other (newer) organizations that actually might be interested. BUT you gotta first start with challenging them on this basis.

Larry Kelley said...

I thought you would. Question is does a majority of Amherst think that way?

And the real question is, why not find out?

Interestingly last night the Select Board kind of berated the small voter turnout we get for our annual elections.

THIS, coming from a board who throughout their entire political careers were never once elected in a local contest garnering a 50% or better turnout.

Larry Kelley said...

My previous comment was for Anon 12:19

Anonymous said...

The SB assumed they knew the pulse of Amherst as being 4 (in favor of NOT flying the flags) to 1 (in favor of flying them) with their every 5 years decision. They said it was to fly them on "major milestone years"...whatever the heck that means for such a horrendous event, and I don't buy it. Why not every other year to make it even? But by making this a 4 to 1 decision they presumed to know what the citizens of Amherst want, as such is it not now the SB's RESPONSIBILITY to poll the voters to see if it was a correct interpretation?

Larry Kelley said...

They were, sort of, following Town Meeting's vote from 2007 where two thirds said "no". But one third said "yes".

So Gerry Weiss came up with this silly "compromise' of flying them once every three years to mirror that Town Meeting vote.

But then Ms. O'Keeffe suddenly changed that in 2010 to once every five years (starting in 2011) on the tenth so they would be up on "milestone anniversaries."

Anonymous said...

Wee need to add a black man with a afro3 to the flag, or a marijuana joint, or a socialist hammer and sickle. Or we can simply change the stripes to a rainbow. Even better a caricature of Rachel Maddow. Anything that's "hip" and "progressive" makes them foam at the mouth in this town.

Anonymous said...

Hey Larry, please keep up the fight! What's the next step?

Larry Kelley said...

Both Stephanie O'Keeffe and Diana Stein's Select Board (the solid NO votes) seats are up March 25.

One of them needs to be replaced with a person who will support the annual flying of the flags.

Better yet, both.

Anonymous said...

Sure. Because there's only one issue in the world.

Larry Kelley said...

As good a one as any.

Anonymous said...

Hey Anon 3:04 PM, how is a black person (with an afro) equivalent to drugs or socialism? Supposedly, you are drawing a correlation that Amherst supports leftist causes, but you included a black person as something symbolic. RIGHTS ARE UNIVERSAL. Please defend your racist comment.

Anonymous said...

It would be an act of both courage and character if Mr Kelley would summon the wherewithal to disagree with an anonymous poster without calling that person a "cowardly nitwit"

It's no act of character to mean spiritedly call someone else a coward.

It's embarrassingly anti-intellectual and really quite shallow to assault another with the term "nitwit"...

Most especially when claiming the High Moral Ground of

Patriotism

Larry Kelley's authenticity becomes the casualty of such behavior.

Larry Kelley said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Question for Anons... why do you not post your names? Richard Marsh

Walter Graff said...

"It's embarrassingly anti-intellectual"

Ha. In Amherst a town with more degrees than supposed global warming this is the anti-christ. LOL!!!

FYI the term is said correctly as moral high ground and not high moral ground.

There they go again Larry attacking you and not what you present. You always know you've won when that happens.

Anonymous said...

Question for Anonymous 9:42-

Why did you post as Anonymous

Then

Identify yourself as "Richard ""Morse".

I post as Amonymous for a number of reasons, beginning with the fact that LK's bluster and bellicose language and assaultive behavior creates an unsafe aosphere on this site.


Nonetheless, I refuse to be intimidated into silence.

Larry Kelley said...

Wow, aren't you the brave one.

Anonymous said...

^^^^^^
(he sneered$

Hilda said...

Larry,
You may not be so rich but you are famous as your flag story was picked up by the Boston Globe this morning!! Congratulations!

Larry Kelley said...

Yes, the Associated Press picked up the Masslive online story (a greatly condensed version of course) and sent it out over the national wire yesterday afternoon.

Sadly, I'm not surprised.

Anonymous said...

O'keefe and Stein both need to go....and if they run again they won't get my vote.

Dr. Ed said...

I once suggested loading a C5 with Pork guts/scraps/offal and dumping it from 1000 feet over Mecca -- the entire deck spins and it can be rolled out en-flight.

I still think it a good idea -- but it should be done over Amherst....

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:16pm. Not sure what you mean about posting as Richard "Morse"...I am not he, nor have I ever posted under another name. I may have forgotten to add my name to a post here and there and then corrected it with an add on of my name. But, if your intimidated by Larry, or anyone else, perhaps you should "GROW A SET"! You'll feel much better about yourself. Until then, you are showing the world nothing but cowardice. RICHARD MARSH.

Anonymous said...

I'm not intimidated. Guess your reading comprehension could use a little tweaking.

You sure don't sell the "grow a set" idea by conflating one's ability to express oneself clearly with male genitalia.

Folks generally have other uses for them.

And indeed would you suggest that women would benefit by "growing a set"?

When one posts anonymously, you appear to assume that the poster image.

Or that only males have courage?

Walter Graff said...

Don't bother stooping to their low emotional level Richard. Most of these folks who post with no name are emotionally immature and unsophisticated and have little to add to any conversation here. I ignore them and all they can do is throw barbs once and disappear when you don't fill their needs with a response.

Anonymous said...

Male, female, all can have courage. You do not. Richard Marsh

Anonymous said...

And if you don't have the courage to sign your name to your published words... that speaks louder than I can. Richard Marsh

Walter Graff said...

Sounds like another liberal feminist hiding behind a wall while trying to emasculate men. Probably works for one of the woman's groups like Safe Passage that tries to make every man look like an abuser.

Anonymous said...

Meanwhile you make yiourself look clueless.
Let me guess- you are a white male over 50,

Anonymous said...

Got an idea, Larry-
Why don't you cook up a scheme to shut down Amherst government in an attempt to defund the non-flag flying?

Anonymous said...

"Sadly, I'm not surprised."

Poor, poor Larry. So sad. Such crocodile tears.

Gee, I wonder who alerted the media?

Larry Kelley said...

Actually "the media" routinely covers Monday nights Select Board meetings (as they did on the night of 9/10/01).

The Gazette published early the following morning, MassLive a few hours later with their version, and the AP picked up the MassLive story.

And at the moment that MassLive (top ten website in the nation) story is #3 for overall comments.

Anonymous said...

Sure. I always watch Fox News for their coverage of our selectboard.

Larry Kelley said...

Oh I don't think anyone who knows journalism would equate Masslive or the AP with Fox News.

Kicking insanity to the curb said...

"Sounds like another liberal feminist hiding behind a wall while trying to emasculate men."

Aw come on Walt, these girls aren't trying to emasculate men...


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wuJJuK7ADk8

Time to call a spade, a spade said...

Oh and one more thing...


Fck Amherst.



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p8bDS-Z3gmg