by Travis Mateer
Missoula’s new Mayor, Andrea Davis, must understand that there is power in things NOT happening because the request for City Council to NOT do anything about the urban camping ordinance is apparently coming from the Mayor’s office. Here’s how Gwen Jones is framing the decision:
City Council president Gwen Jones said the decision to delay the issue – this time until early January – will give incoming mayor Andrea Davis time to weigh in on the matter. City Council is also working on a parallel ordinance regarding camping in parks, and the two issues will now be considered side-by-side in January.
“Council has been working on an urban camping ordinance for quite a few months, based on what has unfolded in Missoula for the last year or so related to urban camping,” Jones said. “Although we had cued it up to start hearing it, we decided after some good discussions with the new incoming mayor, Andrea Davis, to hit pause and hear that in early 2024.”
Why is Missoula’s new Mayor making this “request” to do nothing? If the Missoula Current article is to be believed, it’s because of social media claims coming from Councilman Carlino. Here are the claims, along with the names of four City Council members Carlino called out on
The issue was coming to a head as early as Sunday when council member Daniel Carlino on Twitter called out four members of City Council for wanting “to use police force and fines to punish people who are experiencing homeless.”
Carlino named council members Mike Nugent, Heidi West, Gwen Jones and Stacie Anderson. None of the four are on the public record suggesting “police force” as a solution to homelessness.
Davis, who will be sworn in as mayor next week, asked the same four council members in an email to remove the urban camping ordinance from Wednesday’s agenda.
“I would appreciate the opportunity to review the implications of this ordinance with city departments, assess resources and budget demands associated with this ordinance, and seek input from community stakeholders,” Davis told the four council members in a letter she shared with the Missoula Current.
While this stupid debate continues making headlines, our outgoing Mayor, Jordan Hess, is annoyed the public got to comment on the Johnson Street Shelter AFTER the decision was already made. I think it’s quite fitting to have a FUCK THE PUBLIC sentiment expressed by Hess on his way out. From the link (emphasis mine):
In his last meeting as Missoula mayor, Jordan Hess derided the “stupid,” “confusing” and “clunky” process that requested public comment on the Johnson Street Community Center more than a month after the shelter reopened.
The Missoula City Council held a public forum to gather feedback about the shelter Monday, even though the city and the Poverello Center entered into a contract for the facility in September. The public comment opportunity this week had no bearing on decision-making about opening or running the shelter, even though future decisions about the center will come before council.
The forum, according to Hess, “is a relic of antiquated state law as far as how land-use decisions are made.”
See that? Our placeholder Mayor got one final shot in scapegoating the state before moving on to whatever bureaucratic cog or non-profit position he’ll more than likely land in. Good job, Jordan!
Another headline that I find hilarious about municipal government is this one from the Missoula Current:
Why are several Council members choosing to sit down? Is it because our Sheriff’s Office euthanized then executed two black men? No, silly, those dead black men are NOT the reason for this latest round of virtue signaling. From the link (emphasis mine):
“I stand for peace,” Daniel Carlino told the Missoula Current. “I stand for climate justice. I stand for humanity.”
Carlino, who declined to elaborate, has remained seated during the pledge each of the past two Mondays. Council member Kristen Jordan also remained seated on Monday night. She said she supports the nation’s veterans but takes offense to the Pledge’s statement of “liberty and justice for all,” calling it “not true.”
“Local, state, and federal governments are currently passing legislation that means my daughters and I do not have bodily autonomy, legislation that erases America’s history of oppression toward our BIPoC neighbors, legislation outlawing the word ‘gay,’ legislation that bans essential medical care for trans children and adults, legislation where it is better to be rich and guilty than poor and innocent, ‘License to Discriminate’ healthcare bills, legislation further taking away rights of sovereign Native Nations, legislation criminalizing houselessness, and the list goes on,” Jordan said.
Yes, the lovely BIPOC political pawns are definitely mentioned by the virtue-signalers, but only their history of oppression, not anything more current, like figuring out how two black men can be killed in the manner they were killed in this caring, liberal town.
While this little stand of NOT standing is something I find incredibly annoying, I do appreciate how Kristen Jordan slammed the Missoula Current’s TERRIBLE reporting of local issues in the article.
Jordan said it was little more than “clickbait” for the media to note those Missoula council members who sit for the pledge. She was also critical of the Missoula Current’s hybred coverage of City Council meetings – an option the city enacted in 2021.
To defend his “news” journal–a piece of shit propaganda rag that I totally would sue if I wasn’t so famous–Martin “Gomer” Kidston references how actual reporters have reported on political pledge protests in the past (emphasis mine):
Elected officials who have occasionally protested the pledge have been widely reported on, including members of the New York Senate and several members of the New York City Council. When several members of that body sat for the pledge, CBS reported it as an “unusual protest of an elected body of government officials.”
However, members of the veteran community have noted the Missoula council members’ protest of the Pledge. Jerry Webb, a Marine and Desert Storm veteran, described it as a shameful display and a slap in the face to those who served.
“People have fought and died for this country, sacrificed time with their families and answered the call to service, and they (council members) can’t stand for 20 seconds to pledge their allegiance to America?” Webb said. “America isn’t perfect, but what they’re doing is disgraceful and embarrassing to Missoula.”
Missoula embarrassed? No, if this town can ignore its Sheriff’s Office euthanizing and executing black men, I don’t think anyone who matters is going to give a shit about Council members sitting their ass in a seat.
I know it’s only the opinions of important people that matter in Missoula because I am clearly not one of those people, and therefore things I’m concerned about don’t matter, even though I can warn about the proliferation of guns and a few days later, what do ya know, an article that includes a gun in the headline.
Should I keep putting myself at risk for this piece of shit town when more and more people are successfully depicting ME as the threat? I have to give that one some serous thought, especially as I think about two Montana politicians who better be worried about what I know, and what I have yet to write about them.
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Thanks for reading!