Last night, the Worcester City Council voted 9-2 to support the City Manager’s handling of Occupy Worcester so far. Several councilors spoke to the issue, but none of the supporters addressed incidents like OW people being threatened with arrest for entering City Hall to schedule an appointment with the Manager, or the frequent policy changes about the use of Lincoln Square that have frustrated police and Occupiers alike.
The Council also, by voice vote, withdrew their own request that the Manager have people meet with OW to answer questions and address concerns.
So the Council voted a “good job” to the Manager while withdrawing any previous suggestions to him. I am pretty sure these votes had zero effect on anything.
You would think that Councilor Konnie Lukes, who last week complained that “we’ve sort of turned the tables around where the CM is leading and the City Council isn’t doing much of anything” would be opposed to measures shirking leadership, but you would be wrong—she was a strong supporter.
I couldn’t help but think of Dianne Williamson’s recent satirical postmortem on Councilor Barbara Haller while watching this meeting. Haller co-sponsored the resolution supporting the Manager’s OW crackdown, and this might be one of the last high-profile things she takes on as a Councilor. Haller’s behavior at this meeting echoed Williamson’s sarcastic portrayal of her as someone who’s a “liberal” in her own mind but who the unfair public see as “not progressive enough”.
(Williamson has started doing a sort of Stephen Colbert thing with her column, which I fear is a little insidery and subtle for non-Worcesterites. For example, in this column she misidentifies One Love as “vegetarian,” framing the “Dianne Williamson” character as “ignorant outsider” in the very first sentence.)
Sorry if this post is disappointed and angry—I usually avoid watching the Council meetings because I don’t like feeling this way. Happy posts coming soon.