A Truthful Dialogue

To the parents of Cameron,

In my professional life I have served on a Presidential Task Force to provide recommendations to the President of the United States of America. In doing so I have personally witnessed the destructive and divisive political process that defines what so many despise about Washington DC. All I can say is that now, Washington politics have arrived in Cameron. For three generations my family has lived and worked in Cameron and it is disheartening to see Cameron experience this recent campaign of disinformation.

In reviewing the postings on the social media that pertain to the recent election, I am disgusted by some of the tactics utilized in waging a campaign of destruction. The use of mistruths, partial truths and misrepresentations is appalling. The political process for the city, state and country are well described and open for public participation. For months, the recent tax issue has been open for public debate at the City Council, EDOC and Park Board meetings. This information is all publically available and announced in advance. The specifics of the tax proposal have been articulated multiple times and open for public input. If someone chooses not to participate or become informed, they have nobody to blame but themselves. It is not a problem with the process or the elected officials.

The cold hard reality is that the Park Board for the City of Cameron has enough funding to do routine maintenance and replace the swimming pool every 30 years or they can provide new programs and recreational opportunities but they cannot do both. The decision made decades ago by the Park Board was to continue to add new recreational amenities such as the soccer fields, a skateboard park, volleyball courts and new restrooms rather than to reserve all non-maintenance funds for a future swimming pool. This was not the decision of the current City Council or current Park Board.

Now you face a reality; the pool needs major maintenance or replacement. You have three choices, add no new recreational amenities and wait a decade to repair the pool, add no new amenities and wait 30 years to replace the existing pool or pass a new tax that will allow the repair or replacement of the existing swimming pool. There are no other realistic choices.

So, to the parents of Cameron, it now appears that the day will come when the pool is closed because it has non-funded maintenance requirements or has irreparable damage and needs replacement. When that day comes, your children will not be able to swim at the Cameron municipal swimming pool. When that first hot and humid day of the summer arrives, please call the vocal opponents to the recent tax proposal and ask them what your children are supposed to do for recreation in the summer. In addition, please ask them why they did not choose to become informed or engage in a constructive campaign but rather sat on the sidelines until the 11th hour and acted as a "peanut gallery."

My final comment to those who have been so vocally and vociferously opposed to the proposal submitted for vote on August 4, 2015, I implore you to lead, follow or get out of the way. And while you are at it, please respect our intelligence and intellectual competence by engaging in a truthful dialogue rather than a distortion of facts and confabulation.


Terry Clark, MD


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