Members & Friends, our very own Jean Siebenaler, DWCF 1st Vice President (& past legislative chair) is quoted in this article and appears in the video speaking before her Santa Rosa County Commission. A great example of the need to have OUR presence at our local municipal meetings and call out injustice when we see it and also offer support where it is warranted!
SANTA ROSA COUNTY, Fla. -- The fallout continues over comments made by a Santa Rosa County commissioner last month.
As WEAR News reported last month, Commissioner James Calkins rejected a candidate for the Marine Advisory Board because she is a Democrat.
Calkins called the Florida Democratic Party an "Evil Party."
On Monday, citizens lined up to condemn his comments, as did two fellow commissioners.
Citizens who spoke were united in rejecting the comments of Commissioner Calkins.
"You are a dangerous person Mr. Calkins. Labeling a certain group of people as not worthy, as evil," Wallis Mahute, Santa Rosa County resident.
"I must speak out against the hate-speech that is emanating from the Santa Rosa County Board of Commissioners against citizens who are politically registered as Democrats," Dr. Jean Siebernaler, Santa Rosa County resident said.
Last week, Commissioner Ray Eddington quickly denounced the comments. On Monday, commissioners Kerry Smith and Colten Wright did the same.
"It embarrasses me that you do the things you do," Commissioner Smith said. "You get up here and throw these populist hand grenades."
"They were the most unamerican, unchristian comments I could hear from a county commissioner," Commissioner Wright said.
Like all the speakers, Calkins said he was exercising his first amendment right. He stood by his comments, saying they apply only to political appointments.
"The majority of the citizens expect us to put political appointees that are republican in positions," Commissioner Calkins said. "That's what they expect us to do and I'm speaking for them."
Several called on Calkins to step down. One speaker indicated she intends to file a complaint with the State Ethics Commission over the commissioner's comments.
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