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Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette Logo Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette


Gazette Editorial: Town hall was minefield

Going into a question-and-answer session with a hostile agenda, which some members of the audience did at the Ocean Pines town hall meeting last Thursday, is one of those increasingly disagreeable developments of our current democratic circumstance.

Why, for instance, would anyone ask a question of the presiding person or group, when he or she has decided in advance what the answer should be, regardless of any other information provided?

In such situations, the inquisitor obviously wants a fight rather than an explanation, which, considering our extreme divisiveness these days, has become the new normal.

While a reasonable back-and-forth between those in authority and their opposition is acceptable and informative, it’s just rude to assume that dominating a discussion by virtue of volume and persistence is fine with everyone else in the room.

From the sound of things, however, the vinegary flavor of last Thursday’s experiment in board transparency was the product of sour grapes.

And that is difficult to understand, when the finances of the association were left so snarled that the current board had to hire a team of accountants and fraud investigators to produce a clean set of books.

Clearly, the opposition to the current board demonstrated last week is about more than a $30 assessment increase. Without an obvious goal in plain view, one can only assume it’s all about building a platform from which people out of power can be heard, over and over again.