Skip to comments.KC council seeks park board memberís resignation (Minuteman member)
Posted on 06/15/2007 9:02:15 AM PDT by Altura Ct.
In its first rebuke of Mayor Mark Funkhouser, the City Council has condemned his controversial appointment to the parks board.
The council voted 9-3-1 this afternoon to call for Frances Semler to immediately resign her days-old appointment to the Board of Parks and Recreation. In a resolution, the council said if she does not do so within a week then Funkhouser should recommend the council remove her.
It is a symbolic resolution that says Semelers appointment will be a divisive force in our community rendering the work of the parks board suspect.
While not legally binding, it is a public reprimand to the mayor as he faces controversy over Semlers views on immigration, both legal and illegal.
Councilwoman Beth Gottstein said city appointees should be models for our community, and Semler would not be, especially with the Latin community speaking out with such force.
Councilmen Terry Riley and John Sharp said their call for Semlers resignation has nothing to do with her anti-immigration stance, but her affiliation with the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps.
These affiliations here are very questionable and very offense, Riley said. I believe these affiliations will get in the way of moving the parks board forward.
Sharp scoffed at the notion that Semler doesnt support the Minutemans philosophy, saying she was a leader in a hate group.
You dont join the Minuteman and not believe in their main thrust, which is vigilante action on the Southern boarder, he said. They are a vigilante group, an extremist group. They are far outside the extreme.
Councilman Ed Ford reminded Funkhouser of his support of school vouchers in the mayoral campaign and then his change of heart once a public outcry ensued. Ford urged Funkhouser to do so again, saying the issue is offensive to many Kansas Citians.
But council members Bill Skaggs and Deb Hermann said the council should not meddle in the mayors appointment decisions. Hermann, who has said Semler should voluntarily step down, said the resolution means nothing.
Skaggs, Hermann and Funkhouser voted against the resolution. Sharon Sanders Brooks abstained.
Funkhouser scolded council members for opposing Semler without knowing her or speaking to her.
I may yet change my mind on Ms. Semler, but I am not yet prepared to do so, he said, adding that he believes his former campaign volunteer is a hard worker who will be an exemplary parks board member.
Also Thursday, Hermann disclosed that she telephoned Funkhouser at home around 10 p.m. Saturday to urge him not to appoint Semler to the parks board. She said she was unaware of the Minuteman connection, but warned Funkhouser because she had been offended by Semler in previous meetings.
Hermann said Semler had made racially insensitive comments during discussions about Kansas Citys efforts to build an inland port with Mexico. Funkhouser told Hermann he planned to go ahead and make his appointments public on Monday, she said.
Here is a little different take on this.
Frances Semler is under siege. This 73 year-old grandmother was recently named by Kansas City, Missouri, Mayor Mark Funkhouser as one of five Board of Parks and Recreation Commissioners. Six of the thirteen City Council Members are now calling for her to step down.
Their reason: Gross incompetence? A felonious past? Dereliction of duty? Nope. She’s a member of the local MinuteMen chapter. That apparently is reason enough to disqualify this otherwise qualified appointee.
Generally, I avoid local issues, but bear with me as I color the pertinent backdrop to this outcry. Mark Funkhouser is a recently-elected Democrat who was celebrated just three days ago for shaking up the blue-blooded, WASPy Parks and Rec. Commission:
Mayor Mark Funkhouser today took a slap at the parks department for decades of ‘elitism and cultural divisiveness’ in naming his appointments to the Board of Parks and Recreation Commissioners.
‘The commissioners have often been chosen from among the city’s wealthiest,’ Funkhouser said, pointedly making his announcement in Troost Park in the city’s poorest council district. ‘In fact, the reason the parks board is separate from the city management structure at City Hall is because the city’s elites wanted it to be free from the influence of regular folks. With the appointment of this board, I am signaling a change.’
In place of the white guys he dumped, Funkhouser installed a ‘representative’ team comprised of women and minorities. One of the other newly-minted commissioners, Ajamu Webster, is a founding member of the National Black United Front’s local chapter. The NBU Front’s homepage describes it as “a coalition made up of individuals and organizations working together for the benefit of all people of African descent.” Among the NBU Front’s major causes are support for reparations payments and African-centered schools (in the US!). Semler’s critics are (surprise, surprise) smearing her as a racist. Apparently membership in this explicitly racialist group doesn’t bother them.
Parenthetically, the MinuteMen are careful to the point of absurdity to avoid any mention of race when promoting and defending their cause, even spelling out in their pledge that “a Minuteman believes that just as ethnicity, race, religion and all such factors are incidental and do not affect our God-given, constitutional equality as American citizens, such factors are also irrelevant in the debate over illegal immigration. There is no tolerance among Minutemen for racism or bigotry - E Pluribus Unum - Out of Many, One.” No such verbiage from the NBU Front.
Said Councilwoman Beth Gottstein, referring to the Minutemen:
This is one step from the KKK (Ku Klux Klan). My world is totally rocked by this. We fight this every day. I am grieving for my friends in the Hispanic community.
Nevermind that the Minutemen have not engaged in vigilantism, and have not been found to have engaged in any illegal activity despite being under the watchful eye of ACLU scouts sent out to try and catch one of the thousands of members—who’ve donated their time and energy, pro bono, to alerting a severly overburdened Border Patrol of invaders from south of the border who’ve illegally crossed into US territory—doing something untward.
Gottstein, and another Council Member, John Sharp, say they are offended by the group Semler is associated with. Nevermind that the Coalition of Hispanic Organizations (COHO), one of the groups leading the charge against Semler, has teamed up with La Raza (”The Race”) in the past to support various legislation and causes. Association with an ethnic separatist group doesn’t bother Gottstein or Sharp like a multi-racial group of concerned citizens drawing attention to unenforced federal laws does.
Frances Semler is understandably astonished at the paroxysm of cricism directed at her. It is tough to see how her membership in a grassroots citizen group that is viewed favorably by most Americans has any bearing on her ability to perform her duties as a member of the KCMO Parks and Rec. department, but a potential connection is being asserted nonetheless:
Some worry that Semler will impose her views on the parks, such as attempting to mandate that all materials be in English and banning immigrants from using city parks fears that Semler said were absurd.
Given that English is the official language of both Kansas and Missouri, and that many illegal immigrants do not pay into federal programs like the National Park Services’ Land and Water Preservation Fund, which provides grants for the creation and development of state and local parks, these are things I’d advocate for. But my view is irrelevant—she’s given no indication that she will do any such thing.
As if that wasn’t enough of a stretch:
In addition, some council members were dismayed that one of the leading anti-abortion advocates, Phyllis Schlafly, praised Semler last fall for her leadership in opposing Kansas Citys plan for an inland trading port with Mexico.
If you weren’t already convinced that this unctuous outrage is more of a vendetta against a woman with conservative views serving in a leftist city government than a genuine concern for her ability to perform her duties sufficiently, that should do it. From where does abortion come into play? And what does her opposition to a trading port with a foreign country have to do with her ability to oversee local parks? This is cultural Marxism.
Yet another Councilwoman, Jan Marcason, is worried that the attention devoted to this newly-created controversy will divert too much of Semler’s attention—but if it weren’t for people like Marcason making a big fuss over a non-issue, there’d be no ‘controversy’ in the first place.
Others have criticized Semler for wanting to halt not only illegal immigration but legal immigration as well, to allow the record number of foreign-born US residents currently living in the states have ample time to assimilate into the American mainstream. She wants an immigration timeout, similar to what took place from 1924 to 1965. The public overwhelmingly shares her sentiment—a detailed, comprehensive Zogby poll found that 66% of Americans believe current immigration levels are too high, while only 2% believe they are too low.
Interestingly, the Jewish Community Relations Bureau is joining other special interest groups in calling for Semler’s resignation. Perhaps the Bureau should focus more on the immigrants coming into the US from Latin America, who are by far the most anti-Semitic major demographic group in the US:
One of the most important findings of ADL’s 2002 Survey of Anti-Semitism in America concerns Hispanic Americans, one of the most significant and fastest growing segments of the American population, in which the poll found an extraordinary gap between those born in the United States and those born abroad. The survey revealed that while 44% of foreign-born Hispanics hold hardcore anti-Semitic beliefs, 20% of Hispanic Americans born in the U.S. fall into the same category.
While only 12% of white Americans hold what the ADL considers to be “hard-core anti-Semitic beliefs”, 35% of Hispanics in the US do. So ubiquitous is the antagonism towards Jews in Latin America that Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has accused them of murdering Jesus and taking “all the world’s wealth for themselves.”
The KCMO Morning Show’s Chris Stigall has listed contact information for the six Council Members demanding Semler’s head on the station’s blog, and I humbly borrow from him below:
Deb Hermann (1st Distirict) 816-513-1624
Jan Marcanson (4th District) 816-513-1617
Terry Riley (5th District) 816-513-1629
Ed Ford (2nd Distirct) 816-513-1601
Beth Gottstein (4th District) 816-513-1616
John Sharp (6th District) 816-513-1615
City Council Main Number 816-513-1368
Email their assistants...
Deb Hermann - terri_mailto:email@example.com
Beth Gottstein - kristin_mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Ed Ford - lisa_mailto:email@example.com
John Sharp - daron_mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Jan Marcason - susan_mailto:email@example.com
Terry Riley - schylon_mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Thus far, Funkhouser has been reticent in the face of the special interests lined up against Semler. I will be contacting the council members listed above to suggest they reconsider their perplexing positions, and urge concerned readers to do the same.
Extremists!? They sit on the border and report those entering our country illegally. How the hell is that extremist? Liberals are going to be the death of this country.
And of course Commissioner Riley has factual evidence that confirms his rhetoric regarding the Minutemen?
Any ACLU/NAMBLA members there?
My new congressman was endorsed by the Minuteman PAC so he’s got plenty of libtard panties in a twist too.
Any group which wants to destroy it is diversity.
Do I have that right?
Then let the multiculturalists pay the taxes. Let them not just exclude the constitutionalists from serving in office. Let them exclude them from supplying the dollars and sweat necessary to support the New World Order.
Sadly I am beginning to wonder if this liberal sickness will eventually kill Uncle Sam.
The 6 are punks, little different than common street thugs who stick up little old ladies in alleys.
Amazingly there have been people in KCMO who thought so highly of the place they felt insulted that the United States capital city wasn't built nearby.
Guess they were wrong. Turns out it's just a place no different than any other place, but in this case remarkably like those places in S.E. D.C. where the dope dealers stand on the corners in open air markets peddling dope and flesh.
So it is okay to discriminate on the basis of political ideology. Very nice.
I live in KC and our City Council is largely made up of professional bureaucratic sycophants lining their pockets with tax dollars. Each one has their little fiefdom and panders to special interests to stay in office. Most City Councils consist of a few genuinely committed folks that are reviled by their arse kissing colleages in private. KC certainly has its share of elected hypocrites. The new Mayor is a good man but he has his hands full just dealing with our conservative hating newspaper let alone that posturing flock of magpies we call a ‘council’.
Stay on the job and show these Communazis that we still ahve freedom of association in this country, whether they like it or not. (BTW, they don’t. It’s against ther liberal principles.)
Park Commissioner Frances Semler, as well as Mayor Mark Funkhouser need our support in this issue. Semler is a patriotic American, protecting rights of all U.S. citizens. Those who are attacking her on no basis need to look deep into themselves, as they have some deep-seated hate in there, even racial prejudice.
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