I was furious this morning to read about what this senator from South Carolina wants to do to Berkeley for its anti-marine recruitment statement. Now I disagree with the City Council of Berkeley on this–I think the Marines should be able to recruit wherever they want. If people want to join the military, they should be able to. But Senator Jim DeMint of South Carolina has taken it too far. To punish the City Council’s resolution, he wants to take away 2.1 million from the city. So what was that money going to be spent on (this list was taken from the S.F. Chronicle, Feb. 15, 2008)?
$750,000 for a ferry service
$87,000 for the Berkeley Unified School District’s Edible Schoolyard Program
$94,000 for the city’s police and fire communication system
$975,000 for the R.T. Matsui Foundation for Public Service at UC Berkeley
$239,000 for the Ed Roberts Campus, which serves disabled adults and children.
So the Berkeley City Council votes, and a Senator from South Carolina, pretending to be patriotic tries to take away money from children and the police and fire department. Not a good move for someone who is supposed to be a senator. So we can blame DeMint when a fire rips through a building and the fire department cannot communicate adequately because he is mad at the City Council. And we can blame DeMint when disabled adults and youth go without much-needed services, all because he is mad at the City Council. And lots of people will take to their cars because he is trying to cut off the ferry service. This guy sounds like a real winner. It is too bad for South Carolina though.