The policy of limiting public comments proposed recently by the Waxahachie City Council is not good government. 

Albeit legal, both within Texas law and constitutional as proven over the years by many challenges, the matter at hand is not its legality but its purpose ethically.  

As to my knowledge, never over the 50 years under our present city charter has there been any limitation on the good citizens of our fair city being able to express their concerns to the council. I have witnessed long and short comments, all degrees of criticism and praise, and at all levels of clarity and logic. Never has there been any disrespect to the audience or city staff by the length of the comments. It has always been citizens being as citizens as they are in the purity of that designation. 

So, what changed as for the need to limit citizen participation?

A person speaking before their city council is the purest form of government by self-determination there is. Austin has removed itself from the people's wants. Washington, D.C., even further. By this action, will our council begin to widen that chasm at a time it should be building more bridges leading to better citizen involvement?

The speed of the proceedings of the council should not usurp the input of any citizen who wishes to offer it. For it is not its purpose to ask any citizen to conform to its design but to act in the design of the citizens of Waxahachie, however that is conveyed.

The city council allows for public comment. Let it remain as public. Where the citizens will decide how to present it. Not their government.

Alan Fox


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