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Echo Editorial: Standing up for what is right

Our form of government allows for and encourages people to question decisions made. This includes elected officials such as the Ely city council.
We were disappointed in the reasons given for not supporting a resolution questioning Gov. Walz’s executive orders regarding the coronavirus pandemic.
Walz had originally told Minnesotans there was a need to “flatten the curve” in order to build up a possible response. That was three months ago. Walz has shifted tactics and been slow to return life to normal even when the current numbers are nowhere near his predictions.
Rightfully, the Ely city council had an opportunity to pass a resolution questioning the governors as well as telling local business owners they can open without fear of reprisal.
But instead of standing up for those business owners, five of the seven council members cited a vindictive governor who would slash Ely’s local government aid. This is pure hogwash.
First and foremost, LGA is a formula driven funding mechanism in law that is passed by the legislature and then signed by the governor. To think a city would be penalized for speaking against the governor’s policies shows a lack of understanding of the process and a failure to comprehend the First Amendment.
Those rights, from freedom of speech to the right to petition government, exist for all of us, including elected officials. We expect our city council members to stand up for what is right, to question those who impose rules without the input of the people and to do so without fear of reprisal.
These freedoms have never been more clear than they are today.

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