My first full City Council Meeting as an Atheist Member Tomorrow

The religious will frequently argue that an atheist is inappropriate as a government representative for various reasons (you need a moral compass, ad nauseum).

The village clerk came by my house Friday afternoon with the agenda for the meeting. This will be my first full meeting as a councilman on the Village Board. Let's take a look at the agenda, and see where a "Christian Viewpoint (tm)" would be of use (more follows):

old business:

Approve last month's minutes.

Emergency items (none).

Finance report for the Village.

Release of grant funds for improvements to the Village Hall.

Public commentary.

Receipt of bids to deconstruct High School gymnasium. (It is falling apart.)

Planning commission vacancy.

Trim trees overhanging streets.

Post handicap parking signs at new Village Hall.

Window repair bid awarded.

new business:

Flag purchase for village park and hall. New park flag donated by me.

Emergency response plan needs updating.

Rug delivery to Village Hall.

Insurance coverage for new Village Hall.

Replacement of sewage lagoon fence. State requirements for fence compliance.

---- ----

Yup. Only a Christian could fathom these inscrutable issues.

Though the vast majority of the village is Christian, they are also pragmatic. They would not set aside a candidate merely because of religious faith. They want someone who cares about civic life in the village, regardless of faith or lack thereof.

This fascinating array of items is what government is usually about at the local level. I am not sure how belief in a book of stories that cannot be confirmed would make any difference on how I would approach these critical topics. - James.

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Comment by James Kz on January 8, 2013 at 6:19pm
Yup, the meeting turned out okay. No villagers with pitchforks and torches to burn the new atheist councilman at a stake erected in front of the Village Hall.

I used to wear a t-shirt to village meetings (before I was appointed to the council) that says "teach the controversy" and has the periodic table of all five elements (air, fire, water, earth, aether). Our public librarian (a former schoolteacher) got a hoot out of that shirt.
Comment by Steph S. on January 8, 2013 at 5:57pm

How did the meeting turn out? Did everything go OK?

Comment by Randall Smith on January 7, 2013 at 7:54am

oops.  "be wearing a 'This...."

Comment by Randall Smith on January 7, 2013 at 7:52am

I don't suppose you'll be a "This is what an atheist looks like" sweatshirt to the meeting? Remember, don't ruffle any feathers!

Comment by James Kz on January 6, 2013 at 11:26pm

Thanks, Miss Steph. I suspect (like all the previous meetings I have attended as a member of the public) that it will be fascinating.

Board meetings have been interesting in the past. There were two members that despised each other, so much so that they would get into physical fights, and the county sheriff deputy had to attend each meeting to ensure violence between them didn't break out.

They are both off the board now, and the sheriff's department has told us that they will no longer be providing the deputy.

Comment by Steph S. on January 6, 2013 at 11:21pm

I wish you the best James.

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