Winter is the perfect time to explore the natural stone shelters where native Arkansans once lived
It isn’t even that John La Tour would return Fayetteville to the past; he’d take us all to a place we have never been before, a community filled with almost perpetual anger.
John La Tour, who promoted himself during the recent election in Fayetteville with the slogan: “Conservative Values * Conservative Choice” is one of those railing against big government who may be in for a rude surprise come January, when he will actually be expected to help govern, and not just toss out cliches to the faithful.
If not, he may well prove to be a most entertaining - and divisive - figure, dropping nuggets of free market philosophy, while everyone else on the Fayetteville City council is trying to get some work done.
But La Tour, propelled to victory by those living in abject terror of Fayetteville’s
Civil Rights Administration ordinance, may prove to be merely a one or two issue alderman.
After all, you can’t go through four years carping about sign ordinances and “special rights” for folks you don’t understand.
Well, yeah, you can.
But even though La Tour hasn’t taken office yet, I have already seen his Fayetteville, and I fear it.
We spent most of the month of October in Oklahoma, prepping my late mother-in-law’s home for an estate sale, and eventual real estate sale. While there, every day on television we were overwhelmed by images of candidates, each and every one of them proclaiming their disdain for Obamacare, liberals, the “out-of-control” EPA, and the importance of saying prayers with their kids every night.
John La Tour, who has a written so dismissively of the liberals he must now work closely with, and even seek to reach compromises with on occasion, sounds no different from the Oklahoma politicians sneering at liberals.
What la Tour, a man with no political experience, fails to understand, is that that seeing the liberals on the city council as somehow enemies of the people, he is, by extension, expressing that same contempt for the progressive voters of Fayetteville.
But I saw something else in Oklahoma, as well; I saw a vision of Fayetteville, as run by men such as John la Tour, and though I lack Dante’s Alighieri ‘s descriptive skill, let me just say that it would be Hell on earth for Fayetteville's progressive community.
“John La Tour believes in limited government, responsive government and strong families. He recognizes that a strong section of people in Fayetteville agree with these views but are under represented on the current council.”
Well, I’m not sure what strong families have to do with anything here, really; Sting sang that the Russians loved their children, too, so even the Hohn La Tours of the world must believe that even the dreaded liberal must believe in “strong families.”
Well, I’m sure he’ll have plenty to say about that after he takes office, as I am sure he will have plenty ton say about anything. All too often men like John la Tour don’t govern, but use their speaking time to pontificate, or lecture those they look down upon.
But after spending several years traveling back and forth to western Oklahoma, I have grown to appreciate Fayetteville all the more. I have seen towns with “less government” - towns with no recycling centers, no sidewalks, no community spirit, and fear of the outsider, fear of those they do not understand.
And the outsider is not part of the community, and always stands apart.
Billboards dot the streets in these towns, as they are “business friendly,” and often garish signs blink on and off like hookers advertising their wares.
Tame newspapers report what the business community wants, and alternative media, such as public access television, where every citizen - no matter what their political view - gets to speak, are not allowed, or even imagined.
Walking trails? In towns that don’t even care about sidewalks, or crossing lights for pedestrians?
John La Tour, who believes that we have “Communist Czars” in the White House, and benefited from a $2,000 campaign donation from Bob and Michelle Duggar (the Northwest Arkansas couple - from out-of-town - who have a show on cable TV), believes in property rights; I’m not sure many in Fayetteville remember the bitter battles with the property rights movement in the 1990s.
I’m sure that John La Tour is a perfectly nice man; certainly lots of folks seem to like him a lot. But his approach to politics so far, seeing everyone who agrees with him as on the side of the angels, and bristling at the very thought of progressivism, means that we may see some ugly scenes in the city council chambers in the next few years.
In the interests of full disclosure
I did invite John la Tour to appear as a guest on my show, but after some waffling, I was informed, via third-party, that well, it just wasn’t gonna happen.
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