An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.
POLITICIANS ARE THE least respected and most maligned people in the country.
We love to disparage them but, cripes, can’t we have the decency to wish them well when they retire?
Tina Lange has served on Kamloops City council since 2005 but she’s announced she won’t run again because she wants to travel and spend more time with family.
Instead of offering her a few kind words and thanks for her years of civic service, the social media trolls celebrated with taunts of good riddance. It was shameful.
On a personal note, I’ve known Lange for many years since I worked with her at The Daily News, and since then in various other roles. Currently, I have the pleasure of sitting beside her every other week at board meetings.
She’s forthright and sardonic. She’s a strong believer in people’s right to express their opinions. On occasion she’s strongly supported mine, for which I’m grateful, and I’ve supported hers.
Not once, in all the years I’ve known Tina, do I recall her complaining about criticisms from the media.
Often, I’ve agreed with her — on Ajax, for example. At other times, I’ve disagreed with her — such as on the parkade at Heritage House and the recent anti-idling bylaw. She often calls a decision “brilliant” when I find it the opposite. That’s par for the course.
But the garbage offered up by her detractors in the wake of her retirement announcement is disgusting.
We need to keep in mind, though, that this isn’t about Tina Lange, it’s about politicians in general and about the angry, nasty people who enjoy being mean-spirited.
We must remember, too, that there are comparatively few of them. A dozen, 50, maybe a hundred out there who try to dominate the local Comments sections. The rest are thoughtful, reasonable folks who’ve come to the fore in the past couple of days to thank Tina Lange for her dedication and leadership.
To which I add my own name.
Mel Rothenburger’s Armchair Mayor editorials appear Mondays through Thursdays on CFJC- TV. His Armchair Mayor column is published Saturdays on ArmchairMayor.ca and CFJC Today. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.