This letter to the editor is in response to a comment made on Oxford Patch recently.
Perhaps people forget where the Gazebo now stands was once a dusty sometimes muddy, potholed dirt parking lot. It was heavily used by parents to drop off and pick up their children before and after school. The congestion and children running around was a dangerous situation.
Rose McKinnon undertook to improve the area. She organized many to work on the project and always acknowledged their support. She isn’t an “I” or “me” person but an inclusive “we” person who shared with all involved the success of the project. The gazebo is a place where the children can be safe and where the community can hold other events. Most people are appreciative of the effort to build the gazebo for the community and the safety it brings to the children.
The intentional use of the gazebo, at a school site, to attack her personally is not what anyone should accept as protected speech to be expected by any public figure. The impact was designed to personally hurt Rose McKinnon and by extension her family, friends and supporters. It is not funny to them or many others whether or not they support Mrs. McKinnon, as Mr. John Joy was so insensitive to suggest.
I strongly disagree with Mr. Joy comments that our town is “gawdforsaken” and the incident was “funny.” He implies the town's landscape is appropriate political venue for these types of personal attacks. Nor should we tolerate the defacing to traffic control signs by these night riders. These actions are the work of people who can not point to specific issues and then debate them in a public forum. They can only personally attack people under cover of darkness.
Their intentions clearly were to hurt Mrs. McKinnon both personally and publicly. No one should support, condone or make light of the incident. The perpetrators do the town a tremendous disservice we should all condemn. It is time we all ensure similar incidents never occur to anyone volunteering for service to the town. Identifying them would have a deterrent effect on those thinking of doing it again to her or some one else. It would also help remove it's deterrence to people who might otherwise think of running for office.
- Ed Spruck