Thank you for directing Statesboro Herald staff reporter Jeff Harrison to interview me concerning our Rocky Ford City Council meeting last week to hear the distressing news regarding the potential closing of our historic post office.
Thank you Mayor Jimmy Hankinson and town clerk Beth Ward for asking me to address our community and, most importantly, thanks to the large crowd of folks that attended the meeting and offered their support in our efforts.
Now we are all being asked to "serve" by delivering our voices loudly into this arena. The more I research the more it appears that our vote and trust has been misplaced. All of the justifications given me by Congressman John Barrow's office were incorrect which begs the question, why didn't your office verify the information, oh yea, you "trusted" the report because it was signed by another bureaucrat, the Postmaster General.
In response to an email request for a comment, Senator Saxby Champliss's office emailed me a postal regulation letter filled with bureaucratic text book language, past and pending legislation and didn't bother to sign it - just asked me to sign up for his email newsletter. (As of this writing, we have not received a reply from our other US Senator, Johnny Isakson or our State Senator, Jesse Stone.)
The most shameful and painful thing I have had to endure during this "war" was hearing of the phone call that transpired between Senator Chambliss's office and one our local citizens the morning after our town meeting. This person was brushed off and told that "Congress has nothing to do with the closing of the post offices." Wow! That took my breath away. Twenty minutes later I called the same phone number and talked to the same person and was treated respectfully and referred to the postal services "issues person" in the Senator's office. This incident hurt me in a tender way. Do these politicians really think that just because we live in a small town or rural setting we are uninformed and stupid?
"We the People" should each be treated with respect and dignity. We voted you into office. "You work for us!" The senator needs to know what his personnel are saying to "We the People."
On the flip side, our man in the Georgia House of Representatives, Jon Burns, has been a refreshing and genuine voice in this archeological dig for information. He appears to be "one of us" and is as confused as we are about the entire USPS situation and their "ways and means" of conduct in these proposed closings. He even came to Rocky Ford and signed our petition as he said he would. (Think we could get him to run for the12th in 2012?)
So the long and the short of it is this. We must defeat the blackmail tactics of the USPS unions of our Congress. Each of us will have to, as a singular voice, stand and be recognized. Quantity of numbers will have an impact. To that end, if you have ever used the Rocky Ford Post Office, please sign our petition that is posted next door in our restaurant building. (Postal "regulations" would not allow us to display it in the post office next to the posters of the FBI's Most Wanted, but that's another story.)
We have to combine our efforts against this outrageous proposal. Who knows? Tomorrow it may be your post office or another issue that affects your life and freedoms here in this great country.