A Teachable Moment

By Lillian G. Burry, Monmouth County Freeholder Director

Photo by Vinnie Amessé © www.amessephoto.com

Photo by Vinnie Amessé © www.amessephoto.com

When Vin Gopal launched his latest attack, I heard from friends with two different types of advice.  Some said I should fight back immediately because silence would suggest I had no defense.  Others said I should do nothing because to respond to bullying would make me just look defensive.  I thanked them all for their kind thoughts but told them all the same thing.  I see this as a teachable moment to be shared with everyone who may be thinking of someday entering public life.

You may see public office as I do – a way of giving back to society and being thankful for the success you’ve had in your professional life.  In an ideal democracy opponents would challenge you by putting forth a competing vision of the future they would work for and offer up their record of accomplishments so people could judge whether or not they had as good a record as yours when it comes to getting things done.  Unfortunately, that’s not how our democracy has evolved.

Instead of thoughtful, accomplished candidates we are too often faced with political attack dogs whose sole purpose is to try to destroy the reputation of people in the opposing party.  Lies, distortions and bullying are their stock in trade.  If anyone you have ever dealt with in your public life is ever accused of wrong doing in their private affairs, rest assured that the partisan hounds will come barking after you even though you are in no way involved.  That’s just the way it’s done on every level be it federal, state, county or local.  So what are you to do?  The answer is simple.  Whether you are a little league coach or a first responder, whether you feed the hungry, lead a troop of girl scouts or serve on a school board you have a record on which you can stand.  Every person you have helped, every dollar you have saved or raised, every public asset you have fought to preserve, everything you have done in your public life speaks for you.  We are all entitled to be judged by our true record.  All the barking of all the hounds cannot drown out the truth.  At the end of the day the weight of solid accomplishments will balance well against empty accusations from a poisoned pen.

Stand strong with high standards.  Keep firm in your commitments.  Speak dearly of the brighter future you are working to create.  Do this all resolutely and leave those attack dogs to do their howling at the moon.

Posted: February 19th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: 2014 Elections, Lillian Burry, Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, Vin Gopal | Tags: , , , , | 13 Comments »

13 Comments on “A Teachable Moment”

  1. Bob English said at 10:34 am on February 19th, 2014:

    Another teachable moment from this mess would be to have the conflict of interest statues tightened up. Applicants should also be required to disclose how much they paid for a property as well as the source of their financing. In this case, Mr. Lucas did not reveal that he paid 775k for the property while he is receiving $1.2 million for the development rights (And by the way, he keeps the farm!!!) If that information were required to be made public, I would have hoped that other Freeholders besides Mr. Arnone and Mr. Curley would have also have also have voted no.

  2. Tom Stokes said at 11:34 am on February 19th, 2014:

    I am impressed with Ms. Burry’s rather concise, forceful and extremely thoughtful article. It does hit the proverbial nail on the head.

    As well, I agree with Bob English’s thoughts as to this specific matter of more transparency.

    Vin Gopal would have been better served had he praised Freeholders Curley and Arnone for standing up and doing the right thing. Instead, the attack dog barks at everyone without looking in the mirror at himself.

    As one who has now crossed into the ranks of the “elderly”, I miss the days when politics was more civilized (at least on a more local level) and honest debate over issues was allowed. Horrors – you might even borrow (adopt) a thought or two from your opponent who came up with a good idea.

    Until we recognize that in this constitutional democratic Republic the opposition is not an enemy to be destroyed, but rather a challenger bringing forth new ideas and a new vision and those in power would be well served (and the people as a whole better served) to review the new ideas to see if indeed governing could be done a better way (more efficient, less costly).

  3. Charles M said at 12:25 pm on February 19th, 2014:

    Very well said Freeholder!

  4. DEM said at 2:26 pm on February 19th, 2014:

    This coming from the same people and party who a few years ago talk no issues and call John D’Amico a pig.

  5. @DEM said at 2:45 pm on February 19th, 2014:

    Well if the snout and curley tail fits!

    Oink Oink!.

    BTW does Freeholder Burry have 3 pensions like D’Amico? NO!

  6. Phuckflippy said at 11:05 pm on February 19th, 2014:

    D’Amico is a scumbag. I anxiously await him to reach room temperature.

  7. @ Ph--ckflippy said at 9:21 am on February 20th, 2014:

    Do you really need to go down into the gutter like the Democrats do?


  8. Dem said at 1:36 pm on February 20th, 2014:

    @Phuckflippy- You made my point Thanks.

  9. @ DEM said at 1:54 pm on February 20th, 2014:

    You calling the kettle black?


    You are among the most vile of liberal posters here and are nothing to be proud of.


  10. DEM said at 1:58 pm on February 20th, 2014:

    @Jim you are in the gutter all the time.You have no room to talk.

  11. @ DEM said at 3:52 pm on February 20th, 2014:

    Care to share exactly what “gutter talk” upsets you?

    If it’s the word moron or something silly like that, you got thin skin there friend because they are often appropriate adjectives for some people here.

    Beyond that, I seem to remember some pretty vile and disgusting comments from you.

    Or, do you consider facts provided as gutter talk, that which puts Democrats in the corner?

    However, I am going to try and take Lillian Burry’s advice to heart from hear on in:

    ” leave those attack dogs to do their howling at the moon.” But, if people really ruffle my feathers, you will get back exactly what you give.

    As to people with no names like yourself and bill, you are nothing but cowards. Now, is that gutter talk too much for you?


  12. Phuckflippy said at 12:59 am on February 22nd, 2014:

    I stand by my original statement. D’Amico is a scumbag.

  13. @ Ph flippy said at 4:22 pm on February 22nd, 2014:

    And I stand by my statement.

    There is NO place for gutter talk as low as that from either side.

    Have a little respect for some decent woman that might want to read the blog.