Monday, August 19, 2019
It’s On Us
Needs and wants. You know the drill, right? You either got the lecture from your parents when you asked for an astoundingly expensive pair of shoes or you figured it out once you were on your own trying to make your paycheck “play nice” with your budget. There are things we need, like food and shelter, and things we want, like trips to the beach, dinner in fancy restaurants, designer clothing.
Much has been made in certain circles of the fact that County Executive Calvin Ball has a security detail and driver when former County Executive Allan Kittleman did not. It floors me that none of this trash-talking addresses the concept of why. The assumption is being made that if Kittleman didn’t need it, neither does Ball. So it’s clearly a “want” and not a “need”. That’s the argument.
And it’s wrong.
Security protection isn't offered as a perk like a steam towel with your shave. Do we think so little of our local law enforcement that we think they wouldn’t do an assessment specific to each individual? Do we think they would recommend a course of action without having documented evidence one way or another?
The police recommended this course of action to County Executive Ball and he accepted. Why?
Based on hateful comments that people feel free to make on Dr. Ball’s social media pages, the concept that he and his family have been subjected to more worrying threats is not a surprise to me. There appears to be a chunk of Howard County residents that believe that no insult or smear is out of line. They encourage one another, egg each other on. An environment like that creates a fertile ground for those who want to take anger and hatred a step further.
You know what we should be up in arms about? Not that Calvin Ball has a security detail, but that Howard County is the kind of place where he needs one.
That’s on us, not him. We should feel shame. He should not.
If you don’t like the fact that Howard County is spending funds to protect the County Executive, maybe you should do the work to find out why it is necessary. Why it is a need, and not a want. Then maybe we can all work together to make our community a place where that isn’t necessary.
That’s on us.