Mary and Jim Darcy: Newspaper biased

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The DeVincentis e-mails

— As parents of children at Strawberry Park, we have watched with amazement the level of venom directed toward John DeVincentis. For twenty-some years he has been a smart, funny, excellent principal, admired and loved by many. And now we see shock and awe at e-mails from two years ago that don't come close to what the two of us said to each other during the last presidential election.

Seriously, we're not going to defend the e-mails, but they certainly don't mean that John should be condemned as a horrible person, as several have written. Who among us hasn't said rotten things about someone in anger and in private? Some of the "kick him while he's down" crowd would surely not look so great if their private e-mails or comments were all printed. We have been to a few School Board meetings and no, we did not find him "rude, condescending, or hateful," as one letter writer said. In fact, we found him to be right on all the issues we were following. He has cared so much about our schools and worked hard for so long that he feels passionate about the issues and also has a great deal of knowledge.

We like this School Board. We've found Denise Connelly, Jeff Troeger, and Jerry Kozatch to be intelligent and conscientious people who are doing a great job volunteering for the thankless role of School Board member. Let's slow down a little, let them do their jobs, and quit screaming for John's immediate resignation or Denise's recall. Unlike some other boards, this one has actually listened respectfully to community input and has tried to get the superintendent to do the things that they ask of her.

We, too, suppose that the hacking of John's computer was directed by someone in the administration. If so, it's a very dirty trick that no one would want played on them. If someone's private e-mails are printed in the newspaper and their reputation ruined, then it's only fair to get the rest of the story. The whole thing seems rather well-choreographed with the retrieval of the e-mails, the timing of their release, and the Pilot & Today protecting its anonymous source.

We also don't think the Pilot & Today is able to report objectively on School Board issues. The newspaper recently sued the board and lost. Now the newspaper is continuing to hassle the Board with more legal threats. It has meant thousands of dollars in legal fees that could have stayed in the school budget. There has been talk about putting the past behind us and moving forward "for the sake of the kids." For the sake of the kids and the Pilot & Today's credibility, it would have been better not to print the e-mails.

Whether John stays or goes remains to be seen, but let's slow down and let this Board do what they need to.

Mary and Jim Darcy

Steamboat Springs

Comments

boatski 7 years, 7 months ago

"but they certainly don't mean that John should be condemned as a horrible person, as several have written. Who among us hasn't said rotten things about someone in anger and in private?"

Didn't these emails go back and forth for 10 months? (Who knows what else he has said or is thinking)

That's a little more serious, then just saying something rotten about someone.

And he used the school's computer and email account to send them. (how dumb was that!)

On the outside, he seems like a great person, but I think it's time for him to move on. To much controversy with this man over time. This is not good for the community and our kid's.

I think he needs professional help, he sounds like a sick man.

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mom 7 years, 7 months ago

John is far from sick. John is a great guy and the current board is great. If you know John, and you know the paper....you should no this whole issue of "hate and anger" falls on the paper and OLD board.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

Are you forgetting that his intent was to harm? To give guidance to someone in another state on HOW to harm? To destroy someone's career? In a HIGHLY unprofessional and offensive manner on public time using public computers?

And we're supposed to overlook that little fact and bury our heads in sand?

John may be the greatest guy in the world (on the outside) to you and others but he's also a guy bound and determined to destroy other people's careers in a most underhanded and foul manner. It was Simms in the past and Howell now.

Do you have any clue at all what his "offline" correspondence has been when it comes to Howell? Frankly, I don't think he's "done" just yet and won't be "done" until he's successfully and quite fully undermined Ms. Howell's career. Somehow, I'm just having a hard time believing he's a reformed board member who won't (or already hasn't) resorted to the same underhanded garbage he pulled with Simms.

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boatski 7 years, 7 months ago

ok-mom, defend this one-

"I can't imagine being married to her. I would have been arrested for battering and abuse!!" -Dec. 13, 2004

I guess it's the paper and the old boards fault for that remark.

I don't care how much someone hates another person, to put something like that in an email and send it, makes me wonder.

Any man in today's society might be considered to need help (sick) if they have thoughts about getting arrested for "battering and abuse". I don't see John coming out in public and denying that sentence.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

Gwendolyn- Those emails are from 2-3 years ago. Are there others you know about that the rest of us don't, in regards to your "offline" comment? If you can prove he's still emailing in this manner about Simms still or Howell now, please show us. If this is all such a big deal for you to allude that he's still doing it, it's your duty to bring it to light.

If you can't prove it, it sounds to me like the same kind of spite portrayed in Dr. D's emails. You accuse him of something against one person and paint that as the "norm" for his character. For one particular incident, that's a pretty harsh characterization of a person's whole life. Pretty harsh considering that for all the good he's done in the past, people on here want to do the same thing to him and end his career as he wanted to end Simms' career.

"Pot? My name is Kettle, but you can call me Black."

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plainjane 7 years, 7 months ago

John is an expert at manipulation and by the sound of it...he has so many of you fooled. People who KNOW what is going on cannot come forward and print their name as they are afraid of the wrath of John. As much as people want to come to Dr. Howell's defense, they are afraid of losing their job, or their job becoming unbearable at the district. John is extremely vindictive and many, many staff members have been in his line of fire.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

Plainjane- Sorry, but that's just crap. If enough people, as everyone seems to make it sound there are, come forward against him, he can't do a damn thing. Otherwise, everyone signing a recall petition should have the same fear. All one has to do is memorize some of the list of names above their own and turn those names over to Dr. D as a spy. Don't laugh- it's just plausible as what you just stated, if Dr. D is so manipulative. Plus, there are plenty of people who are giving their names out against Dr. D. Why aren't they afraid of reprisal?

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kingsride 7 years, 7 months ago

One way to settle this once and for all. Bring on the recall.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

I'm happy to sign and I don't care who sees my name on the petition.

And, yes, I do have emails. Not as gross as those he sent re: Simms but still eyebrow-raising. At the time I just thought he was extremely rude but now I do wonder.

Look, D has been a board member I have supported in the past and he has taken on district issues that are in alignment with my own sense of thinking. However, district issues he's taken on are one thing. People are another. It may be a tough call (for some people, not me) but in the end the "people" he's taken on and the manner in which he's done it is simply reprehensible.

My gut instinct says to me that if he's capable of writing things about manipulating Simm's daughter and he's visualized and written about battering and abuse of Simm, well, then I believe those "people" issues to be representative of critically defective character points and far more important than ANY district issue he may champion/disdain.

Is this a person I want representing MY child's best interests in this school district? What if he deems ME to be "evil" and chooses to use my child in the manipulative manner exhibited of his behavior towards Simms' daughter?

No matter how much I believe in the district issues D has supported, he lost my vote when his true manner of ethics and morals were exposed publicly. I don't trust or respect him anymore at all.

I have always told my children that I will always love them. No matter what they do in the course of their lives I will ALWAYS love them. However, I've also told them there's a big difference between loving THEM and hating their behaviors. I will not support behaviors that are not in alignment with basic principles of morals and ethics, societal or familial. I will not support criminal behaviors or reprehensible actions taken against others or even against themselves (drug use, alcoholism, etc.). Love THEM but not support their behaviors. And, I don't. Period. Co-dependent behaviors of support feed the cycle -- they don't cure much of anything.

In the end, those who are supporting D and asking for forgiveness for him are nothing more than co-dependents to me. If his hand isn't slapped any harder than a "we forgive you just don't do it again" response to him, the cycle will continue.

Like D -- hate his behaviors. "Forgive and forget " is simply the wrong road to take on this one. Forgive D but remove him from his position so he has no opportunity to repeat his actions in this school district again is clearly the best thing for the district, the people he works with, and for him.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

Fair enough, Gwendolyn, but if you don't care who sees your name on a petition, there should be no shame or fear of posting your name here. As for the emails he sent, well, whatever eye-brow raising emails you have sent from work...did you send them all the while worrying about whether or not your employer would get ahold of them and admonish you for it?

I'm willing to bet most people don't even give it a second thought just the same as most companies have a policy of No Personal Phone Calls at work. How many people on this board can say they absolutely never get or make personal calls at work? (Facetious question in light of anonymous posters)

In fact, have you as a boss ever caught an employee making personal calls, standing there waiting to get the employee's attention, then be told by said employee that standing there distracts them from their call? I have, and by a very good employee, too. There was even the gossip mongering with the occassional bad word involved in the conversation I could overhear. Does this make me think of them as psychotic or in need of behavior adjustment? No, but I do talk to that person afterward to let them know they made a mistake. Losing that person might not be to my benefit in the long run.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

Um, Gwendolyn IS my name.

I don't work for the school district. I'm self-employed. Even so, in the past I've done a great deal of corporate work and NEVER used a business's computer to send personal email. I've documented IT processes for nearly 20 years and am quite sensitive to what goes on with email review inside the corporate world. You'd have to be completely self-destructive to think that you could get away with writing email like Ds on the company computer, on company time, with no repercussions or review of the email by assigned staffers. This is ESPECIALLY true if you've signed a statement informing you of this reality.

Here's what I've never done:

used company equipment to write personal email, much less email in the vein that D chose to write

OR

worked for a company that restricted 100% of personal phone calls -- most allowed a "fair use" for calls to family members

What's most interesting to me is your perspective that a citizen in this community must justify his/her right to speak out before they should be allowed to voice their opinion. This is classic "blame the victim" (in this case, the community) behavior. Very codependent of you in supporting D.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

Gwendolyn- Until I actually meet you, for all I know, you are Pat Gleason, Donna Howell, or Cyndi Simms seeking retribution. That's the problem with an anonymous forum: all people are subject to scrutiny because you don't know who's on the other end. If Dr. D is so manipulative, why can't someone against him be the same way? In fact, let's escalate the conspiracy theory: How do we know that Cyndi Simms didn't manipulate McGowan into emailing D with questions, trying to trap him into saying these awful things? Odds are, McGowan wouldn't have known D's private email, so sent it to the school in hopes for answers from that computer. Then, Simms sees the emails coming from the School addy and says, "Gotcha!" Probable? No. Possible? Why not?

It isn't blame the victim behavior- it's wanting all sides to come forward to verify all intent. Do you automatically take everything at truth that you read on an anonymous forum? I don't. I'm not questioning the right to speak out. I'm questioning the need to speak out without knowing more pertinent information.

Was it poor judgement on D's part? Hell yeah! Did he violate BOE policy? No, he hadn't been elected at that time and wasn't subject to that particular policy. Was it illegal or what I would call psychotic or disturbing? No. Everyone who knows me knows that I'm not a violent person, but I am passionate about what I believe. Have I ever expressed a desire to beat the crap out of someone? Yep! Do I go around doing this on a daily basis and actually beat the crap out of someone? No. Have I ever told people I wished someone would fail or their career would end? Damn straight! People on this forum want Dr. D's career to fail based on this...and maybe based on personal bias, but we can't be sure of that if we don't know them. I remember people questioning the Swift Boat Vets motives or people's motives to recall Wall.

Now, which sentence actually means I going to kill you:

"Oh, you're dead!" "I'll kill you for that!"

Hard to say when it's in print, eh? It's even harder when the emails in question are only one side of a two sided conversation and not the complete email. In fact, a lot of the emails, whether you liked the content or not, seemed to be in a joking fashion. There's a j/k or LOL every once in a while. Bad jokes? Yep, but not everyone has the same sense of humor.

Furthermore, not once in any post on this subject have I supported Dr. D or the opposing side. I even challenged Andyeast to provide proof when questioning the validity of the emails and other things. I have no vested interest in the matter except fairness all the way around.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

Making up scenarios to fit your diatribe is also interesting. You missed your calling in movie/tv scriptwriting, and can sure punch out a lot of vision for conspiracy well beyond what's been reported or admitted to by D or McGowan.

D's email addy is online. Along with the rest of the school board, the supintendent, and most of the admin, general staff, and teachers.

McGowan admitted to his digital conversation with D.

D admitted to the same. There's video of D copping to it all and apologizing.

I don't know you anymore than you know me. We're even.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

Gwendolyn- If D is as manipulative as people say, what's so incredible about my scenario? If I could think of it, why couldn't someone else.

Everything you just pointed out about McGowan is true, but admitting you had the conversation isn't the same as admitting you were coerced into having the conversation. It's all about asking not just a question, but the proper question. That's like basing judgement on me by asking me if have ever smoked in my life. The answer is Yes. The proper question would be "Do you currently smoke?" No, I haven't had a cigarette since New Year's.

The email I mentioned as D's HOME (I used the word "private") email, so of course McGowan would only have the School email addy. The question is who started the convo and what manner of conversation did it take? Again, we've only seen 1 side of a conversation that had 2 participants. Did McGowan try to "dig" what to do out of D?

All you did was point out what was known already instead of questioning further. While you think I missed out on a scriptwriting job (can't write for crap- plot development, maybe), I think I can rest easy with the thought that you are not part of our police department's investigative sector. There's always another question to ask, even if a single person can't think of any other questions. That's why they call the game "20 Questions;" it's because 1 or 2 questions can only give you an answer based on a lucky guess...and lucky doesn't always mean "good."

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

G- By the way, as pertaining to "intent" of accusers, read the 2 post on that Paul Fisher thread. I don't know to the validity of that claim, but if it's true...that's what I'm talking about when it comes to hypocrisy.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

After D admitted writing the words published in the Pilot and made his lame attempt at apologizing for its public exposure, I came to the conclusion that this was a person I didn't want representing me or my child in this school district.

I had no need to speculate.

No need to dream up conspiracies.

No reason to offer forth excuses right and left.

And no need or desire to support him in retaining his current board position.

He admitted saying and writing these things.

And, what he said and wrote was reprehensible.

Accuser? No, simply someone discussing THE FACTS and stating my opinion about the BEHAVIORS. Behaviors that were fully admitted to by D.

I don't need to ask more questions or make up scenarios or much of anything else to know, point blank, that this man is NOT someone I want making decisions for this school district.

It's that simple.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

BTW, since when is being a member of a public board "a career"?

His position on this board is no career and stepping down certainly won't destroy his "career" anymore than his actions and admissions have already.

A resignation (under these type of circumstances) leaves a person in control of his/her own fate and retaining at least some semblance of dignity and respect for having done "the right thing". Had he resigned by now I sincerely doubt the paper's brouhaha over all of this would have continued for this long. The longer you extend the pain...the more public it is and more painful to you personally and professionally.

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mom 7 years, 7 months ago

Yes I do know John on the "outside" as you put it, but I also know him as a human being. As far as your talk of and Simms:John didn't rid Steamboat of Simms, there were many people in disagreement with her:not just John. OLD NEWS. As far as Howell, I am not John or Howell so I do not know their conversations as you seem to imply that you do. Anyway:yes I can see John not being a "yes man" if he does agree with Howell or whoever it might be. We all know John is passionate and that is what makes him a great man. To the next person that referred to an e-mail:I do not take any of the e-mails literally, as they were not meant to be literal. Trying to pass them off as literal is doing the same as the paper. I do not agree with it. You call it news, I call it slander.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

Gwendolyn- How many people can you name that have made being an elected official a career? Mmmm....maybe 90% of Congress, not sure how many people have served City Council for more than a decade, whether consecutively or in smaller, multiple tenures, how many BOE members have served approximately a decade...and in Steamboat, 10 years is longer than more than half the residents stay in one particular job, let alone longer than a good percentage of how long some businesses stay open. Yep: I'd call that a career.

If you feel that one side of a story is enough for you, or you feel that you can pass judgement on a person based on only hearing 1/2 the conversation, as I said before: I'm hopeful you aren't attached to the police department.

Also, a resignation is only dignified if you do it without being threatened with a recall.

And for Trouter, unless you can prove that Howell is doing something illegal, you may want to think about how you word what you said. What you say is vague about her and brings nothing to light and doesn't help anyone at all. If you present a "possibility," you should explain it that way, otherwise, it just looks like more of the same stuff being said about Dr. D.

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kingsride 7 years, 7 months ago

Pretty serious accusations trouter. Alleging criminal conduct. Have you been to the authorities? Looks like more of john d's manipulations to me. Recall is coming forthwith.

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jeannie berger 7 years, 7 months ago

Hopefully you will all read Millie Bealls post. Give what she says some thought. She was there when this started.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

There is no criminal investigation underway, is there? If there is, what are the potential charges? What would any law enforcement agent be investigating? Has the school district reported this incident to the police and pointed fingers at anyone? Did I miss something in the news somewhere? An internal investigation within an entity is NOT the same thing as law enforcement activity.

Given that I haven't heard of ANY police activity on this matter, there is only the color of one's character and intent left to "judge" from the content of the email. In this case, admitting to his written words was enough for me.

I don't generally associate or respect individuals who banter about abuse or child manipulation. Why would I want someone who would do these things on the school board?

McGowan and Simms are of no consequence to me at this point. They don't even work or reside in this state.

Howell has yet to be exposed for uttering or writing in the same vein as D. I've had disagreements with her and her response has always been to talk it through and try to understand my perspective. In a respectful manner and tone.

There's a lot of smoke and mirrors on this forum, as posters try to bring in a multitude of personal points that have nothing, absolutely nothing with the words that came out of D's keyboard.

I don't care how great a guy he is. I don't care whether or not he was "provoked". I don't care about ANY of the peripheral issues that everyone seems so intent on "letting the public know" about.

He wrote despicable things that SHOULD BE uncharacteristic of a school board member. He did this. D did this. There is no excuse for his behavior and he doesn't belong on a school board.

In this town, however, it's all about the excuses while the issue of "personal responsibility" is completely ignored.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

Gwendolyn- "I don't care how great a guy he is. I don't care whether or not he was "provoked". I don't care about ANY of the peripheral issues that everyone seems so intent on "letting the public know" about."

Thanks for helping prove a point that hatred shows thru even if the words are like silk. Saying sh*t or doo-doo...one you can say to your heart's delight on TV, but they both mean the exact same thing. You have just expressed a level of vitriol against Dr. D as he did against Simms. Different words, same level of hate.

(Go ahead- I'm predicting what you will say and already have an answer.)

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

Kielbasa,

You haven't answered a single question I've posed. Until you do, there is NO conversation to be had here with you.

gwen

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

LOL!!!! What question do you want answered? When did the police become involved in this conversation, anyway? You started asking this question as if I was the one who said that there are criminal charges. What exactly are you reading?

Orrrrrr, this is your way of showing how I didn't just manipulate you into showing your anger and hatred of Dr. D, is that it? D showed "anger and hatred" toward Simms in those emails, right? He was manipulative, right? One of my points was that if D could be that manipulative, anyone (well, I said Simms, not anyone) could be that manipulative, right? Some lowly mongrel with only a high school education just manipulated you to show your anger. Gee- Simms is much smarter than me; I'm sure she could have done much worse, right? She couldn't possibly be hiding that kind of personality could she? Only Dr. D can do that, right?

LOL! Thanks for playing, but you might want to stick to Scrabble.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

There is no criminal investigation underway, is there?

If there is, what are the potential charges?

What would any law enforcement agent be investigating?

Has the school district reported this incident to the police and pointed fingers at anyone?

Did I miss something in the news somewhere?

Why would I want someone who would do these things on the school board?


Also:

Is this a person I want representing MY (or, YOUR) child's best interests in this school district? (my answer is no. what is YOUR answer?)

What if he deems ME (or, YOU) to be "evil" and chooses to use my (or, your) child in the manipulative manner exhibited of his behavior towards Simms' daughter?


And:

Are you forgetting that his intent was to harm?

To give guidance to someone in another state on HOW to harm?

To destroy someone's career?

In a HIGHLY unprofessional and offensive manner on public time using public computers?

And we're supposed to overlook the facts and bury our heads in sand?


As for the police question, I believe you invoked those questions when you made the following statement implying that I required some level of police investigatory skills to truly understand this case:

"I think I can rest easy with the thought that you are not part of our police department's investigative sector."


I don't have any anger or hatred for D. None. On the surface he's a nice guy, as has been stated over and over by his defenders here. I don't disagree with any of the posts who indicate he can be a "charming" person when he wants to. However, "nice" isn't exactly the only professional qualification for school board membership.

Answer ALL my questions without diverting to other (smoke & mirror) subjects and not answering at all. Until then, this truly is my last post to you.

gwen

p.s. have you ever testified in court before a judge? If not, well, I hope you get that opportunity some day. Even if it's over a case where you aren't the person on trial. Why? Hmmm, I think I'll let you find out the answer to that question all on your own.

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suckerfreeforlife 7 years, 7 months ago

Congrats matt, you are a master manipulator. No one can keep up w your uncanny intellect. Poor gwen, if only she'd known what a jedi master she was dealing with. Please take it easy on the rest of us poor saps. Ill bet your the only mongrel in MENSA.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

1- No, no criminal charges, underway. Not sure why that's part of the equation, so that answers #2 about potential charges. If you are referring to charges against who brought the emails forward, I dropped that days ago after Scott detailed the process. As for #3, Connelly already said an investigation is underway. Since the investigation is internal, it will go that route until evidence pointing toward a criminal act is uncovered. I believe at that time, it would go to the police. If you don't remember that from threads still showing on this page, then yes: you did miss the news.

5 thru 7- #5 is a question you are asking yourself, so I can't answer that. #6 My answer is as long as he is looking out for my interests, then yes. Since I don't have children, that point is moot. #7, well, people have come after me for things in the past and they already know that I have no problem fighting in the mud. I have nothing in my past that I'm ashamed to have come to light. Like Dr. D and the majority of people, I'm sure, I'm not going just "stand up and testify" to dredge all that up. This goes back to: "Ask the proper question" bit from before. I don't have to hide or lie about anything, but if I'm not asked, I don't have to just offer it up.

From "And:" on- Yes, his intent was to harm her career and hopefully end it. I think that if he (or anyone) felt they hated her that much, I'd almost expect this to be in his mind. As I have stated: I'd express the same sentiment against anyone I felt wronged not only me, but the public in general. I'm not saying he was right, and I never have-- Please don't forget that part, since I've never stated that what he did was right-- and using the schools computer was not a smart move.

The investigation skills were pertaining to the last part of that section:

"And we're supposed to overlook the facts and bury our heads in sand?"

That is exactly the point: you have facts that he sent emails. That's it. One-sided facts. Example- Subject A killed Subject B. It's a fact. Do you send him to the chair/life sentence?

Just answer that question, and we'll continue.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

Suckerfree- Nope, just showing how easy it is and that it can be done by anyone. My intellect is far from superior to anyone. I'm just making a point. In fact, I'm still not done. LOL! I'll bring it home as this plays out more. Will it change anyone's mind? Probably not. As I've stated before on this forum, I don't think anyone has ever had an "epiphany" on a subject they disagreed with thru this forum.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

5 Why would YOU want someone on this board who would do these things?

6 & #7 You don't have children. You don't have much perspective on what these questions even mean to a parent, then, do you? Even so, is it your statement that as long as he's looking out for YOUR interests then you really don't care what he might do to another parent's interest (or, children)?

As to your last question: Yes, I have facts. We all do now. In terms of D's role on the school board, those are the only pertinent facts necessary to conclude he's not fit for the position.


Subject A kills Subject B. Should he "serve time" or even potentially be sentenced to death?

If that was your question my answer would be Yes.

As you are well aware (by the choice of this particular question), this is a highly debateable area of criminal justice and HOW MUCH TIME, WHERE THAT TIME IS SERVED, and THE DEATH PENALTY are extremely difficult questions to answer. It's probably the only area of law where everyone second guesses the answer and checks/cross-checks the facts. All of them. Immediately relevant or extenuating. Or, the system allows that this is what SHOULD be occurring. It doesn't always.

To take a life is an irreversible extreme measure of punitive justice. Because "the system" is so fallible, I do not believe in the death penalty. I'm putting my money on science to fix a great deal of this problem, however. Ask me in another decade whether or not I believe in the death penalty and the answer just might be Yes.

To remove someone from society via some form of incarceration OR by killing him/her is the most extreme form of punishment our judicial system offers. What's "gray" to you may be "black & white" to me. Hence, juries. Hence, prisoners sitting on death row for decades while appeals are processed. Hence, thorough investigations to determine fault, even in accidents. Car accidents. Dropped the baby-on-tile accidents. etc., etc. Lot of ways to accidentally kill another human on this planet. Same for intentional purposes, too.

continued in next post....

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

What I don't believe in are excuses. Whiny ass alcoholics who say they had a bad childhood and just couldn't help themselves when they got behind the wheel of a car...drug users who justify their use of needles because "everyone else was partying and I didn't want to look like the narc"...wife beaters who say she "provoked" him...

Blah, blah, blah. Grow a pair, stand up and take responsibility for your actions, and stop blaming everyone else for the choices YOU make. Excuses, excuses, excuses. Good grief. As a parent, I'm not much into all the "excuses" my kids come up with for their behavior or actions. Oh, I'll listen to it all but I certainly don't choose to pander to it. Which, in the end, is exactly what many people in Steamboat Springs seems to be doing with D's case. Pandering.

I haven't taken the time to thoroughly think through all of what my answer to you would be on this issue and even if I did it would probably be the equivalent of a dissertation. Working on a different dissertation right now, can't take this one on, too. sorry.

At any rate, your question is not relevant to the much simpler case before us now. What D did wasn't criminal. Sure, it violated school district policy and certainly didn't represent this community well. But what I object to is an individual who thinks and writes in a manner that displays a complete lack of civic responsibility, civility, morals, and ethics. He did NOT represent me or my interests in the school district or my behaviors or thoughts when he wrote and sent those emails to McGowan. At all. Yet, there he was, on a school computer, indeed representing us all.

Um, thanks. But no thanks. He should resign.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

I'll continue, then, after your next post, but I'll make this point now:

Subject A killed Subject B and that's a fact. It's the only fact you have at this time, so you said "Yes" to conviction. Fine. Now, after a little further digging, you find out that Subject B came after Subject A with a knife and Subject A protected himself by grabbing the knife hand as it was coming toward him and manuevered into Subject B's kidney, making it self-defense.

So know you've just convicted someone without know ALL the facts. See what I'm getting at? We have not seen the entire email (just excerpts) and not even the whole conversation that was involved.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

Taking a life is still taking a life. Even in self-defense. And, as you must certainly know, the law has a lot of nuances on what constitutes self-defense. Every state has a different judicially collective perspective on this, as well. Some states may well convict Subject A for what he felt was self-defense.

Are you trying to imply that D's actions were justifiable in self-defense? Funny, because he certainly didn't justify his actions with any sense of fearing for his life in any apology/admission I've read so far. And, I can't see where he tried to walk away and not engage in his discourse, either. No, it reads as though he actively pursued it with great pleasure.

Smoke and mirrors. Again.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

Now, reading the 2nd part, I'll finish up.

You made a judgement based on not knowing all facts involved, not just because an excuse was made.

In using the allusion of your anger and hatred in what you wrote, well, that's what I interpretted from what I read...just as everyone else is interpretting the gist of what he said just by a few excerpts of one side of a 2 sided conversation. That makes it very easy to take things out of context.

Plus, D hasn't offered excuses except that he thought his emails would be private. Yep, wrong move, but since he was not a BOE member, it has nothing to do with their policy. He hasn't blamed anyone else for anything. He wrote those emails about a person he despised. He also made the point of taking on the new administration. Sounds like any politician to me. That's why you run for office- to make a difference, not to maintain the status quo. I can't say I remember any politician using a slogan "More of the Same."

Did he manipulate people into believing his side? Sounds like. Does that make it possible someone from the other side is doing the same thing now? Yes, it is possible. Without an internal investigation as Connelly has announced, we can only know 1 side of the facts, so we can't say for sure what the circumstances are.

Now, just because I don't have children doesn't mean that I don't have informed opinions about this. I can say that back when D was at the Elementary school, he evidently got things accomplished that showed a marked improvement for the kids. I still hope to have children and I also have spent the last few years working in South Routt doing shows with children to get their interest in the Arts elevated.

Finally, to the part about, and I quote:

"Blah, blah, blah. Grow a pair, stand up and take responsibility for your actions, and stop blaming everyone else for the choices YOU make."

This is exactly the attitude I take when I see anonymous attacks, except I say take responsibility for your words as well as actions.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

"...take responsibility for your words as well as actions."

Very appropriate closing, given the deeds by D were based in words.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

Yes, Gwen, but it's also for anonymous posters. As I keep saying, Fair is fair.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

Nothing I've done has warranted a need for public inspection or outcry. Anon or not. But pointing the finger outside the circle is certainly a tactic often taken by those accused or defending those accused. Any old scapegoat or redirection of the case at hand will do...

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

It's also a tactic used by investigators to try and get the whole story. Since my identity is for all to know, anyone can easily find out I have no personal motivation in this. Then, we have anonymous people who try to say the exact same thing, but have no way of offering proof. That doesn't stop them from being indignant about being called on it, though. In fact, they tend to act the same was as Dr. D in this particular matter...no, make that they don't even apologize for it and remain committed to it, all the while trash-talking their quarry while remaining hidden. No honor in that, in my eyes. If you disagree, more power to you. Now, I'm going to go skew the next poll results by voting on multiple computers.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players: They have their exits and their entrances; And one man in his time plays many parts, His acts being seven ages.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

"At first the infant, Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms. And then the whining school-boy, with his satchel And shining morning face, creeping like snail Unwillingly to school. And then the lover, Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad Made to his mistress' eyebrow. Then a soldier, Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard, Jealous in honour, sudden and quick in quarrel, Seeking the bubble reputation Even in the cannon's mouth. And then the justice, In fair round belly with good capon lined, With eyes severe and beard of formal cut, Full of wise saws and modern instances; And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts Into the lean and slipper'd pantaloon, With spectacles on nose and pouch on side, His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice, Turning again toward childish treble, pipes And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all, That ends this strange eventful history, Is second childishness and mere oblivion, Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything."

Even players have their names attached to the part they play. I should know: mine's in the Steamboat Pirate & Yesterday that's still out now.

But thanks for the Shakespeare. "As You Like It" was always one of my faves, especially when Steamboat Repertory Theater performed it in...1979?? at the Depot as a rehearsal for the show instead of the actual show, one of the funniest things I ever saw. My first encounter with having to stop the performance while the train went by. LOL!

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

Yes, even players have their name attached to the part they play. They're actors. They want the fame. They SEEK the fame. Any way they can. Even bad press is good press. Or, so they say.

I'm not an actor playing a role here. I actually am a parent of a child in this school district. Too bad you can't write the same.

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reallocal 7 years, 7 months ago

"Gwendolyn- Until I actually meet you, for all I know, you are Pat Gleason, Donna Howell, or Cyndi Simms seeking retribution."

Why shouldn't any of these people be seeking retribution? The short answer is 24 years of comminity service, in defense of a job well done, and, again, in defense of a job well done. What disturbes me more than anything on this forum is more that people cannot keep personal agendas off it and just accept that more people may want to do better for the community in general and the district specifically. Instead, rather than facing the issue at hand, we attack the people who know what they are doing and talking about. Instead, we are holding certain people responsible for raising eithical and moral awareness in our children. Judging from recent developments, I don't necessarily trust those people to have an influence on forming anyone's character, let alone the next generation's.

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reallocal 7 years, 7 months ago

And, Matt, there is something ludircrous about defending the undefendable. Personally there is nothing to be said about any of the people in the above post. Gwen insisted on public proof of DeVincentis' actions, she got it. I applaud her for being responsible enough to stand up and admit she was charmed by his charisma (despite her annoynimity) than I do you, for your blind determination to attempt to defuse the issue by bringing up irrelevant questions. I can only hope that eventually, I can send my kids to private school where I can actually have a say in the eduacational process.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

Reallocal- It has nothing to do with me defending him, but him having the right to defend himself.

Fact 1- Only 1 side of the emails have been read, negating anything being able to be brought to the table to dispute it. That's not how we work in the USA. We know he admitted to these emails, but we haven't been able to see each full email; only small snippets. We also haven't seen McGowan's emails. Ever tried to understand someone's conversation talking on the phone when you can't hear the person on the other end?

Fact 2- I'm pretty sure that in whatever normal process of requesting emails from a government entity would NOT normally just hand over emails without having it properly petitioned. Scott basically said as much when requesting materials that under any other circumstance would be considered a private nature or sensitive material.

Fact 3- People keep quoting the Pilot's poll as to how many people have expressed their view, along with that of people here on this forum. Not only does the poll say it's not scientific, but I've already relayed that anyone with access to multiple computers...heck, as of yesterday I found out as long as you have 1 computer and access to 2 browsers such as Mozilla and IE, you can vote on each browser. Here's a count, then, of how many votes I have "easy" access to: 18 total votes, and that's not even searching for computers in my workplace that are not right at hand. How many times did you vote, Reallocal? Also, on this forum, I already know for a fact that people post on multiple identities. How's that for remaining anonymous? How many times do you count something said by the same person? SBVOR used to be Average_Joe, used to be Average Joe, used to be Pilotwatch. Another person who currently posts on this forum has admitted to me personally that at least at one time, they were posting simultaneously as 2 identities. At this time, that person is on the 4th identity that I know of. I'm currently on my second, since "morty" was mine on the old site.

Fact 4- One of the big arguments on this forum and in letters to the editor about these emails is that D was seeking retribution for feeling he'd been wronged by Simms in some way, and that it was unhealthy to carry it that far. "Why shouldn't any of these people be seeking retribution?" Hmmmm...espousing the tactic you rail against? Without digging further, how do you know where this retribution started or is still going as we speak? There's the hypocrisy.

So how do see it's so easy to trust the motivations of an anonymous person; just because you happen to agree with them, not knowing if they are posting multiple identities to skew opinion and results, "charming" you into agreeing with them? Sound familiar?

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

And Gwendolyn- I challenge you to then prove who you are. Until then, you saying who you are is just "smoke and mirrors" as you put it.

I can at least prove who I am and I'm willing to do so. "Too bad you can't write the same," and actually stand up for it.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

Matthew,

As I told Scott earlier in a private post, I will happily meet with him -- after the school year is done. I do NOT want retribution against my child. I have witnessed mean-spirited, vindicative behaviors from key staff members at SSHS and my child doesn't trust Knezevich. At all. The LAST thing my child needs before the end of this school year is vindictive retribution from something I might have stated publicly.

Since you have no children and haven't had any experiences with a school from a parental perspective, I doubt you could fully appreciate this response. So be it.

gwen

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JQPUBLIC 7 years, 7 months ago

Gwen, matt is another person you will never win a point with. All his self-righteous indignity against anon posters is a joke. He has already admitted to screwing up polls by multiple votes, why not 3 or 4 different ID's so that he can keep his diatribe going. If he is so dead set against anonymity why is he wasting his time on these forums? Doesn't really matter... Gwen, you get your point across and make a lot of sense on your posts (even when I don't agree 100%), stop being goaded into debate by someone who's more interested in finding out who you are than discussing the subject at hand.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

JQ- So when are you going to admit to how many times you voted on the poll...or do you not accept the disclaimer that it's not a scientific poll? Can you actually name each and every person to a single vote?

And go ahead and tell us you only have 1 identity and only voted once...and then prove it to make all the self-righteousness go away. It's not that you can't- your just too scared to own your words and you can't prove otherwise. Must suck to have to hide.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

JQPUBLIC,

Point taken. But, for me this was also a logic construct exercise, as I believe Matt touched on most, if not all, of the current arguments in support of D as he posted each erratic thought.

My opinion of the situation with D stands.

Regardless of Matt's "smoke and mirrors" rambling and incoherent diatribe that bounced all over the map, about all he really did was help to organize the logic and eliminate the riff-raff. In essence, his nonsensical ramblings helped to organize and solidify my perspective.

gwen

p.s. As for the whole "anon" banter he's taken up, the truth is that he simply hasn't anything to lose -- and plenty to gain from his own name recognition in this community, and elsewhere. He's a ham.

It's easy to stand up and be identified if you have nothing to lose.

Less easy if you, personally, have to weigh pros and cons of your potential personal losses if you are identified.

Heart wrenching and horrific if you have the responsibility for also weighing what a child of yours might lose.

Matt doesn't truly know or understand this yet. He will. Someday he will.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

So logic tells you to believe an anonymous source? Since you can't/won't answer it, that is what I believe. You believe that 1 side to the story is enough to make an informed opinion. You are also willing to use your children as the scapegoat for your being too afraid to stand up for your beliefs. Got it. I understand just perfectly that you'd rather hide behind those excuses, the same way D offered the "privacy" excuse. Birds of a feather.

As to what else I understand, I understand that I would fight out in the open tooth and claw for my future children and not hide behind them because that's what a parent does. I don't want my future children to grow up thinking that they have to hide behind masks or lies to get the job done.

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

Then enlighten me, because I don't understand people unwilling to look at all sides of something before making an informed opinion and I don't understand what it's like to be frightened by something faceless.

You call me clueless, I call you a coward. And we just go in circles. Enjoy being scared of shadows since that what both you and JQ don't know any better.

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gwendolyn 7 years, 7 months ago

You really are bored, aren't you?

I know why I'm online and can check the email frequently...I'm working on a project and have been online ~12-15 hours a day trying to finish it. I read fast and can type 90 wpm. But, why are you here around the clock?

Also, no children...how old are you? Young, I know, but what age specifically?

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

BTW- I'm 40 and when I'm bored, I'm online. When I'm not, I'm working or doing something else.

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cheesehead 7 years, 7 months ago

Chewbacca is a wooky that lives on a planet with ewoks. Does this make sense? How could Chewbacca live with ewoks? This does not make sense. It doesn't make any sense that Chewbacca could live with ewoks, therefore the evidence in this case does not make sense and should be thrown out. Sorry, this conversation reminds me too much of a South Park episode... I coulnd't resist.

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painter 7 years, 7 months ago

Re: Last but not Least. I know this is mundane, but the cookies sound good. It would be nice to know how much brown sugar, how much whole wheat flour, and how much egg beaters to measure. We could all use some comfort food about now.

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reallocal 7 years, 7 months ago

Mom-Trust me, the best thing that you can teach your children is accountability for their actions, either in school or the public eye. This way, they learn to consider the consequences of their actions prior to commiting major offenses.

Matt: For the record, none of your "facts" has been confirmed as such, so I will refer to them as "points."

Point 1- Only one person on one end has been exposed. It does not make him the only person guilty, just the only person liable. Fortunately for those supporting the recall (about 80%), nothing that McGown replied could have made a difference. DeVincentis still said these things. Unfortunately for him, his emails speak alone and for themselves.

Point 2- I'm "pretty sure" pretty sure doesn't hold up in any "normal process" of government I can think of...Public records are public. Stop beating the corpse of the horse. Policies are usually in place to protect the institution, and this particular institution (BOE) deserves no protecting, least of all from themselves...Please reread your own posts as to "#1" or "#2"

Point 3- "People keep quoting the Pilot's poll as to how many people have expressed their view, along with that of people here on this forum. Not only does the poll say it's not scientific, but I've already relayed that anyone with access to multiple computers...heck, as of yesterday I found out as long as you have 1 computer andnd IE, you can vote on each browser. Here's a count, then, of how many votes I have "easy" access to: 18 total votes, and that's not even searching for computers in my workplace that are not right at hand. How many times did you vote, Reallocal?" Although I already answered this, ONE.

"Also, on this forum, I already know for a fact that people post on multiple identities. How's that for remaining anonymous? How many times do you count something said by the same person? SBVOR used to be Average_Joe, used to be Average Joe, used to be Pilotwatch. Another person who currently posts on this forum has admitted to me personally that at least at one time, they were posting simultaneously as 2 identities. At this time, that person is on the 4th identity that I know of. I'm currently on my second, since "morty" was mine on the old site."

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reallocal 7 years, 7 months ago

"reallocal" is my first. Matt, this is a subsequent problem. Let's for the hell of it, assume that people who want DeVincentis to resign are equal to one half of the votes at the time I wrote this (it may have changed slightly since then), and at which point we can assume that two thirds of DeVincentis' supporters are also only voting for thier first time (just to make my point, I'll make his supporters have more than one vote) is equal to 559 people in the community. Even if two thirds of the people supporting DeVincentis' continuing board seating, it would still only be equal to 170.67 (giving the benefit of the doubt). So, I guess the question is, Matt, do you trust the people in your own bed far, far more than you fear the people on the opposite side? If not, please reconsider the scientific "probability" of the ST&P's poll...not even my first grade teacher would let such shabby work into the science fair.

Point 4- First of all, Matt, I will admit that my prior statement was a result of anger. Anger that DeVincentis has supporters at all. First of all, I have never had a life free of DeVincentis and his agendas. I am simply admitting that some people in this community have agendas-to better our school district (which entails recalling DeVincentis), versus a personal vendetta that extends beyond district boundaries and policies.

Point 5-(I consider this to be a separate point) "So how do see it's so easy to trust the motivations of an anonymous person; just because you happen to agree with them, not knowing if they are posting multiple identities to skew opinion and results, "charming" you into agreeing with them? Sound familiar?" Yes, and I've already answered your concerns to the best of my ability without endangering any of my family, supporters, collegues, nor friends. Because, let's just own up to it, DeVincentis' emails do encourage another member of another district to take physical action against Simms. How can I be reassured that he hasn't done the same in this community towards anyone now opposed to him? (Plus, no one has ever found me charming).

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reallocal 7 years, 7 months ago

By the way, Matt, this country forced Nixon to resign on such an "anonymous" source. Should that not have happened either? Shouldn't Exxon's executives be tried despite the fact that one woman was willing to lead the charge? What about Qwest? And even current conspirancy theories?
Shouldn't those people be allowed to come forward, or is it only unacceptable to have a whistle-blower when you are in his corner?

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

Reallocal-

Point 1- You're right. And that's why I say they are crucifying D on 1 side of the story. I already used an allusion to how bad that can go in the most extreme circumstance with Gwen. You can't listen to one side to get the whole story. You sell yourself short of information.

Point 2- I'll actually test this theory here shortly and get back to you on it. Then, we'll all know for sure. As it is, I'm pretty sure I know who released them after the last couple of days, anyway. I'm pretty sure I've had a conversation with that person in the last few days, in fact.

Point 3- See? All you're asking me and everyone else to do it to have faith that you are telling the truth. D is right now doing the same thing with trying to make amends. You can't believe him because you used to be a student of his and know him to some degree. You're asking me to have that faith in you based on being nameless, faceless, haven't a clue who you are from Adam and have no way of finding out. No, I don't trust that. I put my name out there, not as JQPublic thinks for recognition, but to own what I say. You know what you get from me and I'm willing to provide proof of my words/actions if ever needed. This is because I have nothing to hide and won't allow myself to be scared. Fight me, and I fight right back.

With the voting, I've already stated I know for a fact the votes get skewed. Not just when I decide to do it either. I know for a fact that an entity has been behind larger votes in the past thru networking. I won't bother to go into that further.

Point 4- That's another point. If you could allow yourself to get like that, and then admit it was wrong, why not give D that same benefit? Because of the scope of it? Does the scope of it not balance out with the situation itself and time gone by in any manner? If not, isn't that eqivalent to "carrying a grudge" all those years as D did? I still say what he did wasn't the brightest thing to do, but he did what he thought was right, whether you or I think it's right or not. Plus, again: without seeing the total email and the responses, there's no way you can put the conversation fully into context. It's just impossible....

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Matthew Stoddard 7 years, 7 months ago

... Point 5- That's your call to remain anonymous. As the person I am, I have sympathy for your reasons, but I can't condone them as honorable when attacking someboy else, even if you feel it's deserved. Just like there are those who agree with you, today's story show that D has probably just as many who'd like to see him stay on the BOE. They came forward to speak to him and I applaud that. They came forth and told the man to his face, whether good or bad.

And as for Nixon, people put Watergate ahead of a lot of other things he did that were landmark, such as helping establish relations with China, finally getting us out of VietNam. It doesn't excuse what he did, but you still have to weigh the good with the bad. To do that, you must have as much information as possible to make that call.

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wissbecklarry 7 years, 7 months ago

Quoting the Bard:
Therefore, since brevity is the soul of wit, and tediousness the limbs and outward flourishes, I will be brief: Your noble son is mad.

PS: Quote is somewhat abreviated in the interest of brevity.

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mom 7 years, 7 months ago

I teach my children just fine thank you...including the fact that there is always more than 1 side to the story and don't always believe what you read (especially the media). Thanks.

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jerry carlton 7 years, 7 months ago

We have not had this much fun since Cargo was mayor of Oak Creek

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