This may not be something many residents are interested in, but I find it necessary to write about because my integrity has been questioned and the office of the mayor is one in the same, and you know how rumors spread in a small community. I pride myself on my integrity.
On Nov. 3, I completed my fourteenth year as chairman of the Veterans Day Parade Committee, which is, basically just me. It is not nor has it ever been, a City of Mesquite sponsored event; but just a few of us old veterans who love our country and what it stands for.
On the parade application I send out every year is a statement that CLEARLY TELLS EACH APPLICANT THERE CAN BE NO POLITICAL ADVERTIZING OR RELIGIOUS THEMES AS WE ARE HONORING ONLY OUR VETERANS. It is also stated in the parade rules that go out to each participant. I can remember only one time in the past 14 years that someone tried to promote a candidate for an office. I told the person that he could not be in future parade if this was attempted again. He complied and has been in nearly every Veterans Day parade.
Shortly after the parade this year I received an e-mail from a current candidate complaining about two other candidates who were supposedly campaigning during this year’s parade. I can assure you this was not the case. I reviewed every picture of every unit in the parade as well as my personal monitoring of every unit to make sure there were no violations of the rules. There was no campaigning visually, in print, or verbally in the parade, period.
I then received an e-mail forwarded to me by a citizen who had just received an e-mail from Ken Cook of Sun City. The same Ken Cook who was going to run against me for mayor and suddenly dropped out and proceeded to bash our city and its government and stated he was out of here. As we were ten years behind the times or something to that effect. Here is his exact quote,” I understand that the Veterans Day Parade was tarnished with local political campaigning, sanctioned by the current mayor. Historically, that has never been condoned in Mesquite and I think it detracted from the honorable intention of recognizing our veterans…but the politicking was disappointing. I suggest that you write a letter to the MLN and DVT expressing the veterans disappointment with the mayor…and demand this never happens again.”
I assure you, no one in the parade did any political advertising or anything related to this. I have the pictures to prove it. So why did these two individuals complain? I don’t want you to guess, but I really do know why. Ask me and I will be happy to tell you. I would have mentioned the name of complainer by name, but she was obviously duped into this by a third party. Following the election last week, the third party has become obsolete.
By the way, Mr. Cook did not send any e-mail to me, but to the head of the honor guard. It was forwarded to me by several veterans who watched the parade and saw absolutely NO campaigning by anyone. Of course, I could be wrong, but I doubt if Mr. Cook was at the parade. If you were Mr. Cook, tell me more about it, please.