By Shannon McKone on Friday, March 26th, 2021 in Eastern/Southeast Oregon News More Top Stories
BAKER CITY – A number of people attended this week’s Baker City Council meeting to speak both for and against Resolution 3881. This resolution is written, “Declaring an Economic, Mental Health, and Criminal Active Crisis due to the current COVID-related State of Emergency Declaration and relating OSHA mandates and guidance.”
Within that resolution the following is addressed in part,
*The full resolution can be read in its entirety beginning on page 47 at: http://www.bakercity.com/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/2581
“…the Oregon Governor’s Executive Order 20-03: Declaration of Emergency due to COVID-19, and all subsequent and related OSHA guidance, and present and future executive order extensions of such are arbitrary, ineffective, and draconian…”
“…the Governor’s lockdown and masking mandates are actively creating division and unrest with the increased potential of physical violence within our community…”
“…we believe in the kindness, compassion, and common sense of our citizens and 56 businesses to help protect the most fragile and susceptible in our community…”
“…the City will communicate in writing with the Governor’s Office to encourage the full opening of our city and county, recategorization to low-population status, or suggesting other means necessary to give our citizens relief from these mandates…”
“…the City will share this resolution with other Oregon cities, counties, and media outlets in the hope those entities will also speak more loudly…”
“…the City recognizes the citizenry of Baker City are free, sovereign individuals within a Constitutional, Representative Republic, not subjects or slaves, and will be recognized as such as we firmly stand to represent them.”
Those in attendance could speak either for or against the passing of Resolution 3881, before the council took the issue to a vote.
One local business owner spoke in opposition to the resolution and had this to say:
“I was really concerned when I read this resolution because my first thought was what what’s the point of this?
It’s very negative, it’s very inflammatory.
We’ve been dealing with this for a year. It has done damage. We are now faced with coming out of it.
The vaccine is available, it’s effective, it’s free. Baker City, Baker County is doing incredibly well getting vaccinated. We are almost through this.
What does this resolution do to help us as a community come through?
This just paints lines, it divides, it’s very very inflammatory. There’s nothing in this resolution that holds the promise of bringing the community together, strengthening businesses and business districts, creating opportunities for neighborhoods to recover, bringing families and social groups and schools together. There is nothing here to help, and that’s what we need from this council. We need you to help us get through this, not talk about how bad it’s been. We’ve all dealt with it, we have differing opinions, but the vaccine is available and it’s effective and it’s free. And as soon as we get enough of our community vaccinated, we can go back to Life as We Know It.”
Multiple people chose to speak in support of this resolution. One of those people had this to say:
“I believe most on my side would generally wear the masks if two conditions were present,
This speaker went on to say,
“Margaret Thatcher said consensus is the absence of leadership. I have been told by some that wearing masks is virtuous. So as to model good behavior to the children, what they mean is to say that they have two supreme secular virtues of compliance and conformity these traits have value and regard to things such as traffic laws, but have no place in the realm of morality and ethics…”
“…I asked what Legacy will you leave your family your community compliance and Conformity or courage and Common Sense? Thank you for your time. God save the United States.”
unanimously voted to pass this resolution with one verbiage addition to line 33 of the resolution.
The vote was as follows.
For: McQuisten, Perry, Alderson, Dixon, Waggoner – Approve as-is
Opposed: Spriet, Sells – They wanted to amend some of the language
It was voted to add the words “to many” before “business” in the following line “…businesses in Baker City have already closed their doors permanently as a result of the Governor’s emergency declaration…”
The full video of this council meeting including the full recordings of all speakers can be found at https://media.avcaptureall.com/session.html?sessionid=4c297dc2-aaa2-41b7-844f-2ac3b95e5bd1&prefilter=852,5984
++NOTE: STORY WAS CHANGED TO REFLECT THAT THE VOTE WAS NOT UNANIMOUS AS ORIGINALLY REPORTED.