I hear you, BP, thanks, and we aren't far apart. I love the zoo and want the donors to keep giving, but I want them to help solve the problem. After all, they helped to create it by giving the money that built the exhibits that drew the visitors who parked their cars. If encouraging them to talk doesn't help, I'm fine with picketing or even boycotting. Somehow, the Zoo needs to get the memo and start respecting its boundaries and the rest of the park.
BP, here are some of the Zoo's donors:
Fred's Super Dollar
Hilton Hotels & Resorts
I think we should stop short of calling for a boycott of the funders or the zoo. Instead, we should ask the funders to tell the zoo leaders to get with the program and stop harming the park.
Zoo leaders will listen to their donors more than they have listened to people who have been complaining about their actions for years. They sure couldn't listen to them less.
Until the zoo quits parking on the greensward, they should forward whatever parking fees they collect to the Overton Park Conservancy.
Branston misses the mark when he views this as a solution in search of a problem.
A few years back, we managed to attract a talented, highly educated guy to my (non-government) workplace. He moved here, bought a house, and appeared to be in it for the long haul.
This guy is exactly the type of person we need to attract to Memphis if we want economic and educational progress in this town. He is also gay.
He recently left Memphis for a job in a bigger, more progressive city. Part of the reason he was willing to seek greener pastures had to do with local attitudes towards gays and the fact that Memphis is behind other cities when it comes to things like like the NDO.
Most cities the size of Memphis have comparable legislation to what is proposed. Most Fortune 500 companies do, too. There's a reason: it's good business.
The NDO isn't just about protecting government workers. It's about the signals we send to people who are thinking about moving here. Passing the NDO will help the rest of the country to stop thinking of Memphis as a small-minded backwater and start thinking of it as a nice place to live.
The flyer totally needs to pick up his column. What do you say, editors?
It didn't read as irony to me, but if you were being ironic, then I love you again. Thanks for covering this important story.
This is an overly charitable assessment of Norris and other anti-democratic forces at work here. The "legitimately aggrieved" establishment's letter phrased "neatly and sweetly," even as it meddles from a distance and threatens state funding for schools? Norris "sweetly natured," "gracious," and "courteous," even as he tries to change the rules midway through the process? "Game could well be over for pro-merger forces?" Norris possessed of "genius or chutzpah?" Sheesh, why don't you just shine the guy's shoes while you're at it.
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By Chris McCoy
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