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Letter to the editor

Bisio calls for less Cory criticism

November 24, 2010 - Dear Editor,

The Clarkston News has published yet another letter from Cory Johnston lambasting the Clarkston city council and making conclusory, unspecific claims of improper, secret decisions "in violation of our own Ordinances, Charter and State Law."

The News consistently provides an open platform for Cory's drumbeat of criticism, even treating his opinions as though they were actual news and headlining them on the front page ("Cory calls for dissolving city," Aug. 25).

As Cory and you should know from my direct communications with you, from my campaign discussions, and from my Facebook comments both before and after my election to the city council, I'm not an apologist for the way things have been. There is much to be done to make the council more open and responsive.

But continued vague criticisms without offering constructive solutions other than the remote possibility of dissolving the city disserve the residents and businesses of Clarkston.

Even if Cory and the News—which seems to support dissolution—could persuade 15 percent of Clarkston voters to petition for dissolution and two thirds to vote for it, that's not going to happen tomorrow. In the meantime, we still have a city and a city government.

Both Cory and the News could more constructively work for realistic change.

Although the News gave Cory another quarter page to lambast the new council, it failed to report on anything that happened at the Nov. 8 council meeting that he criticizes.

It didn't report on my efforts, which continue, to make public the discussions that have been going on about the future use of the old township hall.

It didn't report accurately and fully on the reasons for the council's decision not to expend more city resources appealing an adverse decision about the property at 164 North Main. It didn't bother to solicit a response to Cory's broad, vague criticisms.

If the News wants to be a better channel of communication to Clarkston residents and businesses regarding Clarkston government—which Editor Phil Custodio said before the election that he wanted—then you should have a more serious examination and discussion about what is going on.

How about a periodic point-counterpoint between Cory and me? Or a more thoughtful and in depth look at the workings of our city government. It's easy to sit on the sidelines and criticize. It takes more effort to act responsibly and offer constructive solutions. I hope to see better from the News in the future.

Richard Bisio


Editor's Note: Mr. Johnston's opinions run as letters to the editor, where The Clarkston News endeavors to publish as many viewpoints as possible. Mr. Johnston's are his. A newspaper's job is not to "constructively" do anything. It is to be a leader in the arena of ideas; it is not to paint rosy pictures; it is to report accurately. Please let us know where we did not report the facts accurately. As the readers' best interests are always at heart we do not publish transcripts of meetings, not that we could get them from the city if we wanted to, because the city makes it a habit of not recording their meetings, which has led to inaccurate portrayals of motions in the recent past. Not everybody uses social networking via computer to gather news -- we dabble there, but put more importance in print. We welcome yours and others opinion, even if they differ from ours.

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