Though I was unable to attend the August 6, 2007 Coquille City Council meeting several people advised me of the conduct of Councilor Bruce Parker regarding the Coquille Valley Sentinel. Parker was quoted as saying that the paper did not reflect the ‘values’ of Coquille. He referred to the authors of letters to the editor regarding the local police department as ‘malcontents’.

Does the Coquille City Council denounce the Constitution, the Bill of Rights? The first amendment clearly prohibits abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press. It further allows citizens to petition the government for a redress of grievances. Is the first amendment not part of Coquille’s value system? Is Coquille un-American?

By what yardstick does Mr Parker label his fellow citizens ‘malcontents’? By his own words it would appear that anyone who dares disagree with city management is a malcontent. What hubris to cast one self as judge, juror and censor in a democratic society, or is democracy not part of Coquille’s value system either? Is this the position of the entire city council or the special purview of a despotic, Mr Parker?

Parker then childishly announced that he had cancelled his subscription to the Sentinel because they had the audacity to print views other than his own. To help compensate for this devastating loss I reinstated my subscription.