Imagine waking up in the morning, and wondering out the front door to retrieve your daily paper. You find it under your car and glance at the headline while retreating back into your house. The headline reads that Bigfoot has been captured at the drive-up window at Chick-Filet. This follows last week’s headline that announced the Shedd Aquarium has its newest ‘resident’ in the Loch Ness Monster. The next morning you wake up to the headline, “Cubs Win the World Series”. Strange as it may seem, these are all possible. Considering that given sufficient time, anything that can happen will happen makes it even possible for the following headline, “Naperville city council comes clean with apology to residents”
Granted, this last headline seems the most outlandish of the above four, but it’s still possible. Hero’s surface daily. So why can’t a hero come from the Naperville city council or even the city manager’s office. Well….OK, it won’t happen from city manager Doug Krieger’s office, but a hero could emerge from the city council. Whichever council member it is, would be revered by Naperville residents just as the manager of the Chicago Cubs would be when they win the World Series. Those names would be etched in stone for all to see; people who did the right thing, at the right time, for the right reason.
Wanting to help the Naperville city council, I would like to offer up the following apology that any council member could use in order to come clean with the fine folks of our fine city. It would go something like this:
“ Folks, it’s about time that one of us on the council came clean and did the right thing for you by being honest. I’m speaking on behalf of the entire city council…well that’s not true, since I am the only one at the council meeting tonight. The courage to be honest with you is not one of our values; in fact I’m not sure we have any values, but if we did courage would not be one of them. Anyway, much of what we have done since we have been in office has not been in your best interest, and that’s only because your best interests have not been our best interests. Something had to give, so we chose us over you.
We’ve made a lot of huge mistakes and we continue to do so. That’s what politicians do, and we are good at it. We know that much if not all of our perceived success has been derived from previous Naperville city councils and administrations. If your current city council would have been decision makers in our city’s early years, we’d look like Romeoville today. Leadership is not one of our strengths, in fact, I’m hard pressed to come up with any strengths other than looking good at ribbon-cutting events, and reading proclamations during council meetings.
When I look up and down the dais during council meetings, I wonder how any of us were elected. So often when citizens are making presentations during the Public Forum, they look and sound more informed and qualified than we do.
We don’t really accomplish much, however we were able to quash the non-binding referendum on Smart Meters. We had to. Look what happened when we allowed residents to vote on term limits and ward representation. We would prefer much less resident involvement in decisions. We don’t trust that residents have our best interests in mind. The only people we trust less than Naperville residents, would be fellow council members.
Listen folks, for the most part we have no idea what we are doing, but at least we are good at that. We’re not even good at apologizing and we apologize for that.
In an effort to ‘come clean’ with the residents of Naperville, we decided to make the following statement at each city council meeting, after the Pledge of Allegiance and before Public Forum: ‘We apologize for all that we are about to say and do’.”