Williams should resign

Published 9:11 pm Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Editor, Smithfield Times

We attended the Nov. 3 Town Council Public Hearing regarding the proposed Pierceville development.

The Mayor, an elected official accountable to the taxpayers, had a problem with an e-mail sent by a constituent and chose to use a public hearing to verbally attack the citizen and then lecture and chastise an entire room of people, which was entirely inappropriate and unprofessional. We were looking forward to exercising our First Amendment right to express our views. However, the Mayor single-handedly turned what started out as a productive and respectful meeting into an insult to all residents who were not born in Smithfield. His comments of “you people” and making a nasty distinction between people “born here’s” and those who were “come here’s” (his words) were totally outrageous, prejudicial and inexcusable!

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

One of the speakers was a young veteran who had just moved into the historic district with a wife and new baby due any day now. What kind of impression do you think the Mayor’s outburst made on him? Shame on you, Mr. Mayor, for making him feel unwelcome in this town! We find it ironic that he would treat “come here’s” in such a way just after the developer’s representative made a pitch that Smithfield needs new blood to remain a viable community. If this development is approved, the Mayor will get 151 houses full of “come here’s!”

We have made an effort to attend meetings and communicate with Council. We have asked questions and given opinions. We have always tried to be productive citizens of the town only to discover that the Mayor thinks he is better (because he was born here) than all the people who chose to make Smithfield their home.

We’ve lived all over the U.S. and in three foreign countries. Never has a public official demeaned us for not being born there.

Any public official who launches into a tirade like this at a public meeting should be considered unfit and unworthy of representing all the people of this town as mayor. He should publicly apologize for his demeaning comments and resign! 

RB & Sharla Braunhardt