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Sunday, Sep. 25, 2016

January 16, 2012

Posted Thursday, February 2, 2012, at 12:00 PM

Normally, there would have been a Malden City Council meeting tonight. It will be tomorrow night. There was no meeting because today is the day set aside by the American people to honor the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

I was in the United States Army when Dr. King was murdered in April of 1968. Two things stand out in my mind about the event. The first is personal. My mother was in Memphis that day along with my Aunt Ethel Anderson. Neither one ever forgot that the Tennessee National Guard had to move a tank out of the way to let them cross the only bridge out of Memphis in order for them to return to Malden.

The second thing is that Dr. King had just had his thirty-ninth birthday. Thirty-nine didn't seem so young in 1968. It wasn't exactly old, but it really seems young now.

I believe Dr. King really did lead us out of a shameful time. He led us to finally realize the promise of the Declaration of Independence, the United States Constitution, and Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. This country is far from perfect, but it is a lot better than it was. We have come a long way. I'm still with President Bill Clinton when he said, "Nobody ever won betting against the United States of America." I think Dr. King also believed in our essential goodness.

We meet as your city government tomorrow night. It looks like we will attempt to deal with the same set of problems as in recent meetings. We will have dogs, personnel, the municipal golf course, and other topics. Whatever decisions we reach on these and other issues will not please everyone. It may seriously displease some. We will continue to try to the best of our ability. There is a quote from Dr. King that I have always thought appropriate to government at any level. Please think about it: "All progress is precarious, and the solution of one problem brings us face to face with another problem."

Please join us if you can. We will, as always, spend your money wisely or foolishly depending on your point of view. It's at least arguable that you think we are doing an adequate job because as of last Friday, there was only one contest for the city council in our April municipal elections. The flip side is you may not care. I think you care a lot and are always ready to dump that chest of tea if necessary.

The financial report is as follows:

January 6, 2012 Balance $1,258,465.64

Revenues $93,107.98

Expenses $10,474.17

January 13, 2012Balance $1,341,099.45

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