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Forsythe: Peoria is being ruled by small group of elites


Democracy is worth fighting for - Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, John Adams, et al per the Declaration of Independence - 1776.

"The issue today is the same as it has been throughout all history, whether man shall be allowed to govern himself or be ruled by a small elite" - Jefferson circa 1776.

We live in a representational democracy here in Peoria; it is called a republic and we recite those words in the "Pledge of Allegiance "before every council meeting. Our current government, however, is no longer representing the people. Councilmembers Dentte Dunn and Brad Shafer have done what they can. The other four council members (Jennifer Crawford, Michael Finn, Bill Patena and Jon Edwards), unfortunately, are representing only one man, not the 32,000 Peorians they were elected to serve.

We need to remember our fourth-grade government class, and that we elect people to represent the citizens whom elected them.

For the good, bad and the ugly of democracy, the council members have to speak the for the collective voice of the people. Lord John Dalberg-Acton, most commonly known for the quote "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely," circa 1870, also is also credited with saying, "It is easier to find people fit to govern themselves than people fit to govern others". Need I say more?

Jefferson and Acton were American and British, great men born in the 1700s and 1800s and their knowledge is appropriate today. I encourage the people to take back our city government and ask those who we elected (whether you voted for them or not, they are the elected representatives of the people) to do the job they asked the people to do. Otherwise, the elite will dictate, leading to dictatorship, regardless of the will of the people.

Our Founding Fathers believed freedom was worth fighting for. Please join me at the city of Peoria council meetings. Peoria cannot not be ruled by a small elite as it is being run today. The city of Peoria has a budget of almost $1 billion, so make no mistake that many elitists are lining up on our door step.