Collier County Commissioners expected to condemn anti-Semitism, bigotry at Oct. 25 meeting

A meeting of the Collier County Board of Commissioners on July 13, 2021. (Photo: Author)

Oct. 20, 2022 by David Silverberg

Full disclosure: The author drafted the proclamation discussed in this report

The Collier County, Florida, Board of Commissioners is slated to vote on a proclamation condemning hate crimes, bigotry and anti-Semitism at its meeting next Tuesday, Oct. 25.

The item is on the Commission agenda for the meeting as Proclamation 4A, the first such proclamation to be considered at the meeting.

The proclamation (text below) is scheduled to be introduced by Commissioner Bill McDaniel (District 5) chair of the commission. It is expected to pass unanimously, having previously been on the “consent agenda” of items that commissioners vote on to approve as a block.

Consideration of the measure was held over from the Sept. 27 meeting, when Rabbi Adam Miller of Temple Shalom in Naples protested that it was being considered on the second day of Rosh Hashonah, the Jewish New Year and requested a postponment.

The proclamation puts Collier County’s opposition and condemnation of hatred, bigotry and anti-Semitism on the public record. It commits the county to “actively and vigorously oppose, investigate, and prosecute to the fullest extent of the law any advocacy of violence, acts of violence, or crimes manifesting hatred against any person, property, or institution based on faith, race, gender, creed, sexual orientation, or national origin… .”

The proclamation was initially inspired by a number of anti-Semitic incidents in Lee and Collier counties, in particular the anti-Semitic expression of Katie Paige Richards, who claimed to be campaign manager for county school board candidate Tim Moshier.

However, since that posting in early September, additional anti-Semitic expressions have been made by singer and rapper Kanye West (who now goes by the name “Ye”) and former President Donald Trump, who accused American Jews of being ungrateful for all he had done for Israel.

The Commission meeting will convene at 9:00 am at the Collier County Government Center, 3299 Tamiami Trail East, 3rd Floor in Naples. Residents can sign up to address the Commission prior to the meeting. Public petition speakers are limited to 10 minutes and general address speakers to 3 minutes.

Text of the proclamation:

WHEREAS, Collier County, Florida is an open and welcoming place to residents, guests, and visitors from all over the world;

WHEREAS, Collier County, Florida adheres to laws and regulations and upholds the Constitution and Amendments of the United States of America;

WHEREAS, Collier County, Florida provides equal justice under the law and protection to all law abiding residents and visitors;

WHEREAS, Collier County, Florida supports democracy and democratic forms of government;

WHEREAS, Collier County, Florida abhors bigotry, discrimination, prejudice, and all forms of hate against all people regardless of faith, race, gender, creed, sexual orientation, or national origin.

NOW THEREFORE, be it proclaimed that the Board of County Commissioners of Collier County, Florida condemns anti-Semitism in all forms and expressions; condemns all forms of discrimination, prejudice, and hate against any person or group of people regardless of faith, race, gender, creed, sexual orientation, or national origin; condemns any call to violence or use of violence for any purpose at any time; and resolves to actively and vigorously oppose, investigate, and prosecute to the fullest extent of the law any advocacy of violence, acts of violence, or crimes manifesting hatred against any person, property, or institution based on faith, race, gender, creed, sexual orientation, or national origin, and will provide to bigotry no sanction and to persecution no assistance.

DONE AND ORDERED THIS 25 Day of October, 2022.

Liberty lives in light

© 2022 by David Silverberg

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