Can I ask my readers an honest question? What is it with these elected officials, servants of the public that don’t know how, or simply aren’t able to comport themselves as leaders? Don’t we elect these individuals to their positions in government to lead, and to do it with at least a modicum of dignity and respect?
Some time ago, I wrote an article about Madera County Sheriff John Anderson, and his unfortunate decision to drive drunk in our state’s capital back in November of 2000. Now, yet another local official has gone and made a complete arse of themselves in a very public way. Atwater Mayor Pro Tempore Craig Mooneyham has been charged with misdemeanor “disturbing the peace by fighting”, over something as trivial as…the price of a milkshake. A milkshake that, might I add, he ordered with extra toppings and accoutrements. The incident, which occurred back in late January, has now made local news. (1)
It seems that, upon being informed of the price of this cold and tasty treat, the mayor was evidently overcome with angst over the price, and began berating the cashier at the local eatery where this order was placed. In short, he threw a temper tantrum. Other customers chimed in, attempting to assist the mayor in regaining some perspective, to no avail. Now, charges have been filed against him by the Merced County DA’s office. (2) (3)
Honestly…a milkshake? What have we done to this society of ours, what kind of nation have we become when an elected official throws a hissy fit over the price of desert? When did behavior like this become acceptable? To paraphrase the words of Henry II of England in 1170; what miserable drones and traitors have we nourished and brought up in our household, who let their electors be treated with such shameful contempt? What’s even more ironic about this, is that mayor Mooneyham is also named as being assigned to the city’s “USP/Atwater Community Liaison Group”. (4) Isn’t a “community liaison” supposed to be able to work well with and within the community?
In my honest opinion, the people of Atwater should seek this man’s ouster. I know that Atwater is a pretty small town in a much larger area of California, but I feel for them. I feel for the citizens of this town, a mere five minutes’ drive north on highway 99 from where I live. It has to be pretty embarrassing having a mayor who acts with less maturity than some junior high school students I know. If I was mayor Mooneyham, I would step down.
I also realise that this mayor is far from the first elected official to make an arse of themselves in a public venue. In fact, it seems that this is happening with greater frequency as time goes by. From former congressional representative Todd Akin’s “Legitimate Rape” faux pas (5), (which quite probably cost him the election!) to recent Twitter posts from senator John McCain (6) and former congressional representative Ron Paul (7), our politicians have been letting their mouths, their typing fingers and their attitudes run amok. My fine young readers, I think it’s time that we start expecting better of the people we elect to lead us. In the meantime, maybe the mayor of Atwater would like to invest in one of those neat blenders they’re always hocking down at Costco…