Sunday, February 10, 2008

Holy Toledo! What a Fink!

I hate to admit this weekend, that I have lived in Toledo, Ohio for most of my life. Since we live across the river in a lovely suburban town, I can no longer vote for mayor, but am praying that the good people of my home town will get the message from the national news ---Toledo's Mayor, Carty Finkbeiner, is a few cards short of a full deck. Toledo's economy has been going downhill in direct proportion to the auto industry in Detroit, Michigan for years. Despite a fantastic location on I 75 between Sioux Sault Marie and Key West , I 80-90 between New York and Chicago on the St. Lawrence Seaway, this Crossroads city is losing factories, companies and businesses by the dozen. It's getting to the point where the last person out will have to turn out the lights.

Does Mayor Finkbiner want our young service people to learn how to check buildings for terrorists and incindary devices in downtown Bagdad? I am the proud grandma of an Air Force Arabic translator, who has pledged six years of his life to the service of this country. I'm so happy that the people of The Defense Language Institute in the Presido of Monterrey, California didn't throw him out while he was learning Arabic. He is a proud graduate of Perrysburg High School and a former student of the University of Toledo.
Wake up Toledoans! You need a mayor who knows that America is involved in a war and our kids need to know how to do their job when they step onto unfriendly soil that is across the ocean, not just over the Ohio/Michigan border.

The following article is an example of how the mayor handled a request by our Marines to do practice maneuvers in a deserted downtown.

This from NBC --- Channel 24 in Toledo, Ohio
Mayor Carty Finkbeiner on Friday ordered some 200 members of Company A, 1st Battalion, 24th Marines from Grand Rapids, Michigan, out of Toledo just before the unit was supposed to start a weekend of urban warfare training downtown.
The mayor’s spokesperson Brian Schwartz said, “the mayor asked them to leave because they frighten people. He did not want them practicing and drilling in a highly visible area."
Toledo police said they knew about the training and had approved the unit’s use of the Madison Building and the Promenade Park area. The training was scheduled to start Friday afternoon and last until Sunday. Police said the unit’s presence would have a minimal impact on the city. Police issued a press release earlier in the week saying the marines would be wearing green camouflage uniforms, operate military vehicles, carry rifles, perform foot patrols, and fire blank ammunitiion during the exercise.
Schwartz said there was a breakdown in communication between police and the Finkbeiner administration that led to the mayor’s action.
“The marines drilled here three times during the Ford administration and once under the Finkbeiner administration. After the last visit, the mayor told then police chief Jack Smith, that he did not want the marines back. Smith failed to inform the current police administration of the mayor’s feelings,” Schwartz said.
NBC24 spoke to Jack Smith who recalled that after the marines last visit, he and the mayor had a heated exchange about the training.
“He told me he did not want them, as he put it, 'playing war in Toledo,'" Smith recalled. "I told him, as a former marine, that if one young marine’s life is saved because of training he or she received in Toledo, Ohio, then it was worth the inconvenience.”
Smith said if the mayor objected, then he should have been the one to convey those feelings to police. Smith took his run-in with the mayor as an objection to that last visit, and not future training in Toledo.
As a result, the Toledo police went ahead, granting approval to the 1-24th Marines to conduct the routine exercise. The police notified members of the Finkbeiner administration, who were not aware that the mayor objected to unit’s training in Toledo.
When the mayor found out, he sent a member of his staff to tell marines they could not conduct urban operations in Toledo.
The unit was notified about 3:30 p.m. after an advance team arrived in Toledo. Five buses carrying some 200 marines traveled four hours from Grand Rapids, only to find out the training had been shot down.
The unit briefly stopped at a another 1-24th marine base in Perrysburg Township, then returned back to Grand Rapids where training was expected to be held this weekend.
A spokesperson for the marines said they were disappointed by the mayor’s decision especially after the city had been so helpful in the past.


Carine said...

is there any reason to think any politician is playing with a full deck????

Big Dave T said...

He better hope that Fox News doesn't catch wind of this.

Cathy said...

Lord, he is nuts. but, come just a bit S. and you will find a crazy Sheriff. He also is retiring from the Sheriffs office so he can run for Mayor next year. I cant imagine this man being Mayor.