Send a Message to Charlestown Cyber-Bullies on Election Day
The following commentary by John Goodman was printed in local newspapers and is printed here with permission of the author.
October is not only the month before the local election for Town Council and Planning Commission candidates, it is also National Anti-Bullying Month – something candidates endorsed by the Charlestown Democratic Town Committee may want to consider.
Imagine that students in Charlestown schools created a website to intimidate, defame and demean their fellow students, making vulgar and disparaging remarks as well as falsely assert that their “enemies” were racists or engaged in illegal activities. Imagine children engaged in deliberate, repeated and hostile behavior to falsely discredit their victims with humiliating caricatures and slanderous attacks.
If this type of “cyber-bullying” took place among schoolchildren, the public would demand the website be shut down while we all asked ourselves where our children could have learned such behavior. Sadly, our children need look no further than the Charlestown Democratic Town Committee Leadership to learn about cyber-bullying tactics.
A website owned by Democratic Town Council candidate Tom Ferrio, “edited” by Will Collette, the husband of the Charlestown Democratic Town Committee Chair Cathy Collette, and written by they and other Democratic Town Committee members has been engaged in the aforementioned cyber-bullying for nearly two years, attempting to harass and defame those who view issues differently than they, all in a bid to gain local political power. Mr. Ferrio, in particular, could “pull the plug” on Mr. Collette’s destructive rants at any time, yet refuses to do so.
While all the Democrat endorsed candidates disingenuously attempt to disavow any affiliation between themselves and the cyber-bullying website, the connections with the Democratic Town Committee are clear and undeniable. Not one local Democratic endorsed candidate has been willing to speak out against the dangerous and divisive tactics of Town Council candidate Tom Ferrio, Will Collette and others. Each of the Democratic endorsed candidates have turned a blind eye to these defamatory activities rather than uphold their original promise to “oppose the name calling and finger pointing that has poisoned politics in Charlestown and the nation.”
Four years ago, Charlestown came together to say “no” to the bellicose and sometimes violent outbursts of Town Councilor James Mageau, former Democratic Town Committee Chair, inadvertently elected by 400 voters pulling the Party Lever in a Democratic landslide year. In 2012 we face an even greater threat to civil public discourse should voters elect the Democratic endorsed candidates for Town Council and Planning Commission.
If Democratic tactics to divide the town, intimidate volunteers, and bully those with diverse views on important local issues are rewarded by the voters, ANY Charlestown citizen who speaks out on public issues can expect to be a victim of this cyber-bullying that impacts individuals’ lives and livelihood through slander available for anyone with an internet connection to see.
By speaking out, I may be subjecting myself and my family to the same slander that others have already endured. Yet while such attacks may impact my family’s security, it is no less important that we show our children that we must stand up to bullies. Charlestown voters can send that same message on Election Day by rejecting the Charlestown Democrat Town Committee endorsed candidates.
I strongly urge voters to support the Charlestown Citizens Alliance endorsed candidates for Town Council and Planning Commission on November 6th. Council members Tom Gentz and Dan Slattery are worthy of re-election while Council candidates Ron Areglado, George Tremblay and all CCA-endorsed Planning Commission candidates can be counted on to respectfully listen to the views of ALL Charlestown citizens, rather than engage in the slanderous, defamatory cyber-bullying demonstrated by the Democratic Town Committee affiliated website.