At 4 PM on Sunday, his staff sent out a press release to tell everyone about the meeting, as the town was in the grip of the thrilling finish of the Ravens' game against the Bengals. Robocalls went out to certain local residents Sunday evening, letting them know about their chance to come and discuss things with their rep in DC.
The meeting was at 5 PM Monday.
The quote from the congressperson was, according to the Perry Hall PATCH, "Our feeling is that if we call people up too far ahead of time, they'll forget.
When asked if he believed more people would have attended the meeting had they been given more notice, he said, "That's possible, but if people really have a burning desire to come out and say something, they'll come out and say something."
This whole thing reminds me of the bit Howie Mandel used to use, back when he was funny: "What's your name? What's your name? What's your name? I asked you three ----ing times!"
|"Old Hickory said we could take 'em by surprise..."|
The politician's staff said, "Since Gabby Giffords, we have to consider safety." I agree. It hasn't been a year since the popular congressperson from Arizona was gunned down (and survived, thank God) by one of the gun-totin' madmen who pack certain parts of this nation. This has long been an issue in this country, and it dates back farther than many might think. Andrew Jackson's inaugural celebration in 1829 was marked by the rioting of a drunken mob, and they had to put out great bowls of booze and hard cider on the White House lawn to get the drunks to leave the mansion by the same windows through which they had entered. The point is, Congresspeople should be accessible to their constituents, and the constituents should meet them in an air of friendly, open, unarmed, sober exchange.
But we can't count on that happening! Because many people regard the Second Amendment as their ticket to walking around strapped, just in case the chance to shoot at something - anything! - might present itself.
Cynics might point out that short notice is just a way to keep away the rabble, those members of the populace who might question some of the representative's stances on various social issues.
I can see that side of it as well. Even though we have a constitutional right to do so, have we the right to yell about the theater that congress has become, in a crowded fire hall?