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Thursday, December 27, 2012

Hypocrisy and Prejudice --

against Fitzpatrick 

Let’s take a look at prejudice and hypocrisy today. The term prejudice refers to preconceived, usually unfavorable, judgments toward a person because of personal characteristics, such as gender, social class, or ethnicity. It’s also defined as a “feeling, favorable or unfavorable, toward a person . . . not based on, actual experience.”

Prejudice is used to prove some value or defect without reference to facts. Today, the label “racist” is replacing “prejudiced” since it’s easier to apply to anyone who disagrees with or criticizes a person who might be considered a minority. People have been publicly called racists for noting the ethnicity of a criminal in the crime report. Prejudiced might be a more accurate term, but it’s not as easy to scream and it doesn’t carry the inflammatory stimulus of “racist.”

(Just to keep the record straight, in this blog we’ll use ethnicity to refer to a group identified through a common trait, such as a common culture, language, or dialect. And we’ll use race as a grouping used in Anthropology, which is based upon physical characteristics. For example, the Caucasian race has the characteristics of “light skin and eyes, narrow noses, and thin lips.”)


Now for hypocrisy: promoting virtues, moral or religious beliefs, principles, etc., that one is personally violating. It can be considered a form a lying since it misleads people. An example we've seen in the public square in Prague was a man preaching about the evils of stealing while his confederates picked pockets in the crowd.

Both hypocrisy and prejudice are eventually self-defeating tactics. And where can we see them demonstrated?


For an example of both in Costa Mesa, simply look at the comments in a recent Daily Pilot article about Jim Fitzpatrick (here). In case his name doesn't ring a bell, he is an elected member of the Sanitation Board that the rest of the Board is trying to oust.

The ostensible reason is that he held an incompatible office (Planning Board), but he asserts, and the chairman at Sanitation agrees, that the reason is largely his behavior. He had the audacity to criticize the Sanitation Board’s decision to forgo competitive bidding repeatedly so they could award the garbage collection contracts to the same company over and over. In other words, Fitzpatrick opposes the “no bid” contract awards.

Haven’t we heard a lot about the evil of “no bid contracts” recently? Of course we have, it was the mantra of a small but vociferous group, chanted incessantly against the proposed City Charter. And, it was published in many big labor-supported mailers as a major threat of the Charter to Costa Mesa.

No bid not so bad after all

You’d think that the people who were so vehement against what they perceived as “no bid” clauses in Costa Mesa’s proposed Charter in the last election would support Fitzpatrick. After all, several of them accumulated a lot of space in the Pilot commenting about the danger that the Charter would allow “no bid contracts.” In fact, several of them threw that threat into most of the threads they responded to, one way or another.

You’d be wrong. Instead of supporting his position they are yapping at his heels about such irrelevancies as his job status, or his support of the majority of the City Council. “If you opposed us on Mensinger, we’ll try to destroy you.” They want him gone, better yet, gone and embarrassed and out of cash. No bid contracting, for real in this case, is OK with them.

So, if you consider “no bid” as an epithet of evil, as this small group apparently did, you’d have to conclude that supporting Mensinger was a worse evil than “no bid.” Or, maybe their point is that being Jim Fitzpatrick is more evil than a “no bid” clause in the Charter.

Either way, the terms prejudice and hypocrisy are thus illustrated in those Daily Pilot comments. Their remarks certainly don’t speak well of them, either.

Threat to clean up corruption scares them

As commenter Scott Peotter said, “Just admit it that you hate Fitz and want to use any means necessary to shut him up, before he gets a majority like Righeimer and starts to clean up the San Board like Righeimer is cleaning up Costa Mesa.” 

Perhaps that’s the fear that is driving the prejudice and hypocrisy.

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