What deserves a mention is that the so-called malcontents garnered a hefty share of the votes. It clearly indicates that the Messenger Club is gaining more and more support and are not the small group of disgruntled residents as claimed by David Israel and his "team". The numbers clearly show that opposition to team Dave represents about six thousand five hundred pro-Messenger Club residents.
The re-election of incumbents gives credibility to the argument that incumbents have an unfair advantage, especially when they control the distribution of information and should give residents food for thought in considering the reinstatement of term limits. Those candidates did as well as they did in spite of the efforts of the administration to close out any electioneering while using the village newspaper as a vehicle for their own efforts is a testament to the persistence and determination of the people.
Opposition to the policies and practices of the administration is growing steadily and is reflected in the results of the election that show a growing number of residents are not happy with the way the village is being run by team Dave. they should take notice and recognize the voices of the not so small group of so-called malcontents.
Labeling a large segment of Century Village as malcontents and continuing to vilify them does nothing to move the village forward in a spirit of cooperation and in fact, fuels the fires of discontent. To lump any segment of any population and label them as such smacks of bigotry and intolerance.
The closeness of the vote is indicative of the deep division among residents. We have to agree that name calling and sarcastic snide remarks from either side are counterproductive to achieving any progress. But the frustration of residents who have been subjected to this kind of behavior is manifested in retaliatory outbursts that spiral downward into a mudslinging contest that goes nowhere. In order for it to stop the lead must be taken from the top. There is no consideration given by the administration that the so called "mals" are reacting to the treatment they are obliged to endure and that the anger and resentment they face is created by the arrogant and sarcastic attitude emanating from the top.
The ploy of vilifying residents has to stop somewhere, the obvious place to start would be for the executive to demonstrate tolerance and respect for everyone regardless of their position, and to address the concerns they bring to the table rather than threatening and publicly castigating them and removing them from volunteer positions in the hope they will become so humiliated they simply give up and shut up.
We intend to continue to do what we do. We are encouraged to see that support for our efforts is reflected in the polls. Though no candidates that we supported were elected to office this time, the results do show encouraging signs that more people are becoming aware of the true political situation in the village, and that the Messenger Club is having positive effect on the attitudes of CV residents
In analyzing the results, a definite trend is apparent. Many more delegates than ever before voted in favor of the candidates that David Israel opposed and stated that no votes should be cast in their direction. The numbers tell us that a lot of people are rejecting his arguments. The margins were close as can be seen in the results, the trend continues, we see positive changes looming on the horizon.
A post-election article posted on David Israel's website states that it will take a long time for the Messenger Club to be forgiven, What, we would ask, is just what are we to be forgiven for?
Perhaps the exposure and eventual resolution of the Sheffield O situation? The publication of the details of the road paving fiasco? The exposure of the situation at Kent C where residents who openly disregard bylaws (no smoking) are, if not supported by, then at least condoned by a member of the UCO executive. Our opposition to WIFI, clearly backed up and supported by residents in their vote turning that proposal down? The publication of the details of the disabled couple who were refused ID cards on David Israel’s whim and the results of the settlement that cost Greenbrier C not only seven thousand dollars but casts the whole association and the village in an unfavorable light? Or maybe our condemnation of the condition of CV Lake is not to their liking?
Then, of course, there's the unreasonable censorship of the UCO Reporter and channel 63, a loud outcry objecting to the policies that are heard quite often at assemblies but ignored by the leaders, and the unreasonable dismissal of dedicated volunteers who object.
Let's not forget Howard O’Brien’s attempts to deny some residents access to finance committee meetings, a glaring contravention of the Sunshine Laws which we are legally bound to obey. A position that was soon abandoned after The Messenger Club published objections.
I suppose the administration is still stinging from the exposure of one of their own who got caught red handed destroying the Messenger Clubs distribution of the CV Messenger. That was really an egregious act that is borderline felonious and contrary to any concept of free speech and democracy. The video of the whole incident exposed Century Village to thousands of people who watched it on the internet, subsequently, the Messenger club was accused of destroying the image of the village, The truth is that the culprit who was exposed did more to damage our reputation than the Messenger Club did by showing it to the world.
Our publication of the details of the registered sex offenders living in Century Village raised no objection from residents. I guess we should ask the offenders to forgive us.
These and many other issues that were brought to light by the Messenger Club are issues that would never have been brought forth without the efforts of the few who were willing to stand up and demand action, accountability and transparency. The few who are quickly becoming the many. Some of the above-noted issues remain unresolved, The Messenger Club fully intends to pursue them to the end.
The Messenger Club's members are not looking for forgiveness as they know they did nothing that begs forgiveness. Nor are we dismayed that the election did not turn out the way we would prefer. We are encouraged by the swell of support, we intend to continue to work for the betterment of the village and we refuse to be discouraged.
We can only hope that the newly elected administration sees the writing on the wall and conducts their activities accordingly. If they choose to pursue an open and transparent administration that includes everyone regardless of their position, then we will support them in their efforts. If they choose to continue in the manner they have historically conducted themselves, then we will speak up against them. The choice is theirs to make.