Tuesday, October 16, 2018

"Sham" or Shaming?

A bare-bones forum at Lakeland gets even leaner as one candidate answers an uncomfortable question by making a bee-line out the door.

Posted By on Tue, Oct 16, 2018 at 12:59 PM

click to enlarge Bunker, Burnett, and Dial at Lakeland forum - JB
  • JB
  • Bunker, Burnett, and Dial at Lakeland forum



The ongoing election in suburban Lakeland involves a controversy over a plan by the current administration, headed by Mayor Wyatt Bunker, to construct a new Lakeland High School and pursue various other aspects of urban development. That issue was the main subject Monday night at a forum held at Lakeland Elementary School.

The main participants were Bunker and two incumbent city commissioners in general agreement with him — Michelle Dial and Jeremy Burnett. Absent were mayoral candidate Mike Cunningham and several other commission candidates.

A fourth attendee, briefly, was City Commissioner Clark Plunk, who left the forum after the first question, pulled out of a hat, was read by moderator Frank Colvett. The question was: “Would you favor censure for a government official who uttered public racist remarks?”
click to enlarge "I've done nothing to apologize for": Plunk makes his exit.
  • "I've done nothing to apologize for": Plunk makes his exit.
The others present said “Yes” to that. Plunk responded by calling the forum a “sham” and making his departure. As it happens, Plunk is the subject of a formal inquiry by the NAACP after the publicizing of a Facebook exchange in which Plunk touted a friend on a Memphis restaurant because “there aren’t a lot of [n-words] there.”
(The Commussioner has maintained that his Facebook account was hacked.)

Plunk had previously been involved in an incident in which he publicly opposed a gay youth taking his boyfriend to a Christian Brothers High School prom and characterized gays as “mean, cruel, spiteful people with an axe to grind.

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