He Who Cannot Be Named Should Surrender Gavel

Published 12:00 am Thursday, July 12, 2012

First, merely embarrassing, now he is edging into the outlandish.
Who? We cannot say without violating the Davie County Board of Commission chairman’s new personnel rule.
He Who Cannot Be Named has decreed that county commissioners’ names may not be uttered disrespectfully when the public addresses the commission. Commissioners have been elevated to the rank of protected “personnel,” no longer mortal politicians subject to criticism.  
The county commission chairman, Mr. X, cannot be addressed with contempt or scorn by the masses.
Managing Editor Mike Barnhardt returned from last week’s commission meeting with the oddest tale about Chairman X upbraiding an audience member who had the audacity to call him by name.
A flabbergasted Dr. Joel Edwards had to resort to calling the chairman “that individual” who in another life is known as Carl Humphrey.
The Enterprise-Record occasionally calls the N.C. Press Association attorney with legal questions. Barnhardt related the tale of last week’s meeting to attorney Amanda Martin of Raleigh, who must have needed a good laugh. “That is a gross misinterpretation of personnel laws,” she said. “There is no way that a member of the public mentioning a commissioner by name is a personnel problem.”
Unless our commissioners have signed a secret pact with Moscow or Beijing, Davie County is still part of America. We can name names.
He Who Cannot Be Named also decreed last week that other members of the commission could not speak at the close of the meeting. Only he had that privilege. Then he inexplicably deferred to buddy Robert Wisecarver to talk for him.
This is the circus that passes for Davie County government 2012.
When we should be celebrating the delightful successes of industrial recruiter Terry Bralley, we are mired in a muddy mess stemming from one man woefully miscast as chairman.
Do Mr. Chairman and Mr. Wisecarver think the residents of Davie County can be gagged? Does the chairman not realize he is dancing without music? Declaring the moon to be cheese does not make it so. Devising pseudo-legal tricks to sidestep criticism fools nobody. If Mr. Chairman can’t stand the heat, he should not cook up a full menu of trouble with his sidekick.
Our NCPA attorney laughed at the lunacy. We might have laughed too, but this is our county.
Long ago the old editor failed miserably when pressed into volunteer duty as a softball umpire. Similarly, Carl Humphrey has committed too many unforced errors as board chairman …