Honesty matters

It would be hard of anyone to dispute that this recall process has been a bumpy road. When the founders of Heartbeat of Alaska took this on, they knew expected it would be filled with challenges. One of the many questions that they asked themselves was whether recalling Aderhold, Lewis and Reynolds was worth risking friendships and social connections? Because we believe that honesty matters, the answer was yes.

Honesty is the backbone of trust; without it, trust cannot stand on its own. If a community cannot stand on its own, it has no strength at all. Aren’t those on both sides of this issue united on the essential point, that we all want Homer to be a strong and united community?

Our city council is the foundation of Homer governance. If any one of the six pillars of council begin to fall, so goes our town.

Council members Donna Aderhold, David Lewis and Catriona Reynolds tested this structure this year when they drafted a Sanctuary City resolution for Homer. The response of the community as a whole has demonstrated just how incendiary this action was.

Whether the resolution passed in its original or revised form seems not to matter anymore to this town that is now fully divided. But when it was introduced back in February, for more than 436 voting residents, the obvious intent of the original resolution draft and its subsequent revision were the straws the broke the camel’s back.

By placing their name to on a document that abhorred the idea that our president was making good on his campaign promises the trust of many was broken. Trust in their governance, trust in them as Americans, and trust in them as stewards of Homer’s future, all were fractured when the council members knowingly put our town at risk of losing more than one million federal dollars, annually. The trust had been broken when the clear intent was revealed through evidence of official city emails.

If they had been honest …

If the council members had owned up to their intent to make Homer a Sanctuary City, perhaps we wouldn’t be approaching a recall election. Perhaps the town would have had an opportunity to discuss the process of whether or not it was needed. Instead of owning the realities of their action, though, they attempted to deflect from the real issues by clouding their intent, denying and deflecting from the fact — as evidenced by their own emails — they were indeed working against the current administration and clearly violating their oaths to uphold the Constitution.

If only…

If only these three council members had come forward and apologized for their clearly irresponsible behavior in this highly controversial subject. If only they had chosen to trust the constituents who voted them in to office by allowing the recall to proceed without suing the city and incurring thousands of dollars of extra expense to the city. If only …

Instead, they thought of themselves and disregarded their oaths of office to honestly, faithfully and impartially serve this faithful, seaside town. It took a Superior Court judge to convince them of the democratic process of a recall election — one they they are now forced to face. Can anyone justify that these actions were in any way justified for the betterment of Homer? For the members of Heartbeat of Homer, this recall represents democracy in action by allowing all voters to decide, and in doing so, to democratically vote for our freedom, vote for our families, and vote for our posterity.

Now we sit mere days away from a special election that could likely hold the highest turnout rate in Homer’s voting history. Will you be there to cast your vote to uphold honesty and integrity? Will you stand with Heartbeat of Homer and vote YES to accountability, YES to responsibility, YES to truth on June 13th? It is our belief that in doing so, you will also be casting a vote for our Constitution and for the preservation of the values of America.

Heartbeat of Homer is a political group advocating for the recall. Its chair is Michael Fell, and cochairs are Kesha Etzwiler, Sarah Vance and Tanise Latham.