Tuesday, April 11, 2017
April 11, 2005
Photo credit: J.D. Pleasant, et al.
Twelve years ago tonight, I was threatened with arrest for "disorderly conduct" by City Manager WILLIAM BARRY HARRISS. I had pointed out during public comment -- at the very first St. Augustine City Commission I ever attended since moving here in 1999 -- that our Nation's Oldest City's constant annexations at the behest of "developers" were illegal. They were diluting minority voting strength, violating the Fifteenth Amendment.
HARRISS was a corrupt, venal, evil man. HARRISS thought it was cute to deposit a landfill in a lake, and not tell City Attorney James Patrick Wilson, Esq., who resigned in 2006 rather than work for coverup artists, whose environmental crimes probably put his law license at risk.
HARRISS "retired" in 2010, going to work for the St. Johns County Sheriff, advising SHOAR as he was orchestrate the coverup of the Michelle O'Connell case for corrupt Sheriff DAVID SHOAR, who changed his name from "HOAR" in 1994, and whom HARRISS fund-raised for in his City Hall office when SHOAR was SAPD Chief.
Not once did the cynical, maladroit publishers of the St. Augustine Record ever print one critical word about hateful HARRISS, or all of his works and pomps.
We, the People, have achieved dozens of public interest victories since 2005, including getting the landfill removed from the lake, and a federal court First Amendment victory requiring rainbow flags to fly on our Bridge of Lions from June 8-13, 2005.
And on the Fifteenth Amendment violations (which reduced African-American voting strength from 25% in 1964 to less than 12% today: No more residential annexations are anticipated, as then-Mayor JOSEPH LESTER BOLES told County Commissioners on November 20, 2013, at a joint City-County meeting. The Constitution lives.
My father taught me, as JFK's father taught him, that you must stand up to people with power or they will walk all over you. Venceremos!
Keep asking questions.
Speak your mind.
Here's my 2016 guest column from Historic City News: