There’s been a good deal of discussion and disagreement over Grass Valley Councilperson Lisa Swarthout’s suggestion that Councilperson-elect-Supervisor Terry Lamphier should resign over allegations that he was ogling kiddie porn on his Official County Computer. Some folks think I was being too harsh on Lisa with the cartoon that appeared in The Union Saturday last.
Here’s my take on the situation: Is this how we should conduct elections from now on? An anonymous tipster casually drops a letter bomb the week before the election accusing the candidate of a) child molestation, b) sexual harassment, c) miscellaneous no-no du jour. Without any formal charges being filed, the candidate is forced to nullify an election he or she won fair and square, and the incumbents can appoint the person they wanted on the council in the first place.
Yeah, that’s a great way to run a democracy, don’t you think?
I’m not defending Terry Lamphier. I’m defending the right of the accused to defend his name and the right of the people to hold free and fair elections. If Terry proves to be guilty, so be it. Sorry if it has inconvenienced Lisa and Grass Valley City Hall.