Strange Sounds Heard At City Hall
Japanese subjects heard the most epic and calamitous sound coming from their radios on August 15th 1945. It was the strangely wispy voice of Emperor Hirohito, urging the people to accept defeat in the war with America. The Emperor was divine so it was as if god were speaking directly to the people, something no commoner had ever heard.
Similarly, tonight Emeryville commoners heard something never heard before: it was the mayor delivering the annual State of the City address, directly to the people.
Previously, the State of the City speech has been delivered by the mayor to businessmen at Chamber of Commerce functions. The annual speech has for years been delivered at luncheons around town and accessible only to Chamber members or for those able to pay the entrance fee.
Tonight's speech was open to the rabble; given from the council chambers at City Hall. It will even be televised over ETV.
The implications of this event are far reaching and novel for Emeryville; residents themselves will get the message that they can be part of the decision making process at City Hall.
This new democratic and inclusionary idea was conceived by mayor Jennifer West. As audacious as it is, it should not surprise anyone as Ms West has made transparency, accountability and accessibility central to her term as councilwoman as she said she would if elected.
We commend mayor West for this opening of the resident's government to the residents. It shows respect and a trust given over to the people. Forgive the histrionics Ms West, in Emeryville we're not used to campaign promises being so faithfully comported and democracy so unabashedly embraced.