Jill and Debbie Shine in HB God Imbroglio

Well, as you may have heard, the Constitution took another little step backwards in Huntington Beach last night as the City Council voted on party lines to display the motto “In God We Trust” in council chambers. But not without a proper and noble fight from our two best council members, Mayor Debbie Cook (who is running for Congress) and Jill Hardy (termed out in 2010 and with a small child, but hopefully a future contender for Assembly or Supervisor?)

I hereby take back anything nice I said in previous posts about the four Republicans on council—observers are correct, they are ALL utter MORONS. (As I will illustrate.) And despite the fact that e-mails to the council ran 20-to-1 against the measure and ten speakers spoke against versus two in favor* (including one Westminster carpetbagger), these four blockheads refused to consider any objections, compromises, or postponements, acting in lockstep as though under strict orders from outside city limits. [*Update: now that I’ve seen the video, there were NO HB speakers in favor (where were Cathy’s “citizen” friends?) only the one from Westminster – and this was not just any citizen, but Judy Ahrens, the fanatic who brought national notoriety to the Westminster School Board a few years ago pushing creationism and defying gay rights legislation.]

First and most painfully, nails-on-chalkboard harridan Cathy Green, speaking not so much like a kindergarten teacher as a kindergarten student, protested at length her innocence of any political motivations in putting the motion forward, repeatedly stated that she was “taken back” that there was any controversy at all (since we all say under God in “our PledgeAllegiance”), falsely stated that this motto appears in our courthouses, and falsely denied that Republican activists from Bakersfield had anything to do with pushing the measure. Her partner Joe Carchio, seconding the motion, helpfully pointed out that the city is already “full of signs,” that their purpose is to “remind us to remember,” and claimed that posting the motto will somehow support “our brave men and women in Iraq.”

A visibly distressed Jill Hardy expounded movingly on the points she has made in multiple interviews: If the motivation for this idea is religious then it doesn’t belong in a government building; whereas if the motivation is political she feels it is taking the Lord’s name in vain. She also pointed out that, as a devout Christian, she finds it counterproductive to shove her faith down others’ throats, as it turns most people off.

In response, clueless lunk Joe Carchio quite credibly professed his incomprehension of any of Jill’s points, claimed that “In God We Trust” is not religious “if you just take the religion out of it,” and attempted to accuse Jill of manipulating the issue to her political advantage(!) Fortunately Joe’s ability to form sentences is so compromised that I’m pretty sure nobody else could decipher what he was trying to say except for me (with my advantage of having got drunk with him a few times at his now-defunct Italian eatery.)

The Mayor, a notoriously impatient non-fool-sufferer, croaking through a severe flu, lamented having to waste council’s time on a matter at once so trivial, divisive, and politically manipulative, and went on to list any number of sources for other possible patriotic, secular, non-controversial slogans. Then she suddenly surprised everybody with a clever but appropriate substitute motion to send the matter to the Human Relations Task Force to have alternative patriotic slogans considered.

Avuncular bumbler Gil Coerper was utterly befuddled by the Mayor’s substitute motion, and attempted to propose a substitute to the substitute. Poor old Gil (who was Mayor himself for a year before Debbie) had to have the rules slowly and patiently explained to him before he gave up. (I’m pretty sure Republican Don Hansen, who is up for re-election, let not a word slip through his crocodile smile until his yes vote.)

So, another little setback, we progressive patriots are used to that in Orange County, but remember the ratios on those e-mails and speakers, and how out-of-touch these four dinosaurs are with the times. Everybody knows their goal in this is to paint Debbie and other Democrats as anti-God; but if there is the slightest whiff of that I personally promise leaflets on every car in every church parking lot this October detailing how anti-Christian Dana’s actual POLICIES are.

As for Huntington Beach’s In God We Trust sign, a friend has suggested that I continue my satirical appearances at council meetings, bringing forward a motion to replace the City Manager and Attorney with an Oracle and Sorcerer, which sounds tempting. But I’m looking forward to moving past this nonsense to something more substantive. It’s just that sometimes the PRINCIPLE of little things like this can make your head explode, but tussling over who can say “God” the loudest is just agreeing to play on their field.

It’s time for us Dems to find our OWN wedge issues! Something to force that smirking Don Hansen and shrieking Cathy Green to either take unpopular and plainly un-Christian positions or defy their GOP overlords. As usual I have already said too much. But keep your eyes on Huntington Beach, ye progressive patriots, we are promising you great things.

Theocrat fighters: attorney Allan Baylis
and yer OJ bloggers Vern & Sarah
with satirical placard.
Long Live the Tyranny of the Majority!
(pic by Stanton City Council candidate Kevin Carr.)


About Vern Nelson

Greatest pianist/composer in Orange County, and official troubador of both Anaheim and Huntington Beach (the two ends of the Santa Ana Aquifer.) Performs regularly both solo, and with his savage-jazz quintet The Vern Nelson Problem. Reach at vernpnelson@gmail.com, or 714-235-VERN.