Thursday, July 11, 2013

Open Letter to Milwaukee County Dems

So I suppose I'm going to take heat from friends on both sides for this and maybe I'll even lose work (which I certainly can't afford). But could everyone please just try to take it down one notch?

I've been increasingly troubled by some of the over-the-top and toxic rhetoric flying back and forth between various friends and allies of mine.  I know exactly how divisive this highly controversial Milwaukee County legislation was but none of us are helped by making permanent mortal enemies out of longtime partners and friends.  I just don't see who wins in that scenario besides Republicans...and perhaps that was part of the plan in the first place.

I think I've been fairly clear that I've opposed the legislation to undermine the Milwaukee County Board and I've been vehemently opposed to the manner in which that goal was accomplished.  So I don't have a problem with engaging in an aggressive and sometimes angry battle and debate with friends but it has seemed to go well beyond that point.  Some of the rhetoric has been downright ridiculous and I was hoping it would pass eventually.  But it seems to be migrating from that issue to every other issue now.

The County Board does X and all sorts of personal and absurd allegations and name calling is launched by this group.  Abele, his admin and allies do Y and all manor of venom is cast in their direction.  Again, I'm not saying that we can't vehemently disagree on some very important issues but it seems to be going well past that point. The concern that I'm trying to express here is not really for the entities at the center of this but more for all the genuinely good people caught in between.

I'm certainly not asking everyone to join arms and sing Kumbaya after a heated battle but I'm hoping that we are not doing long-term or permanent damage right now.  There will be a time when many of us will have to team up again in some larger fight.   I'm hoping that we are still capable of doing that after all of this is said and done.  And that is exactly why I'm asking my friends, allies and fellow Milwaukee County Democrats to consider taking some of the rhetoric down one notch while at the same time vigorously standing up for what you believe. I think it really is possible to do both...or am I just being naive?