It’s more than a problem, it’s a failure of human kindness. 

For 4 days, a reporter with the WSJ spent time in Cedar Rapids. She first contacted Kathy and Ajai several weeks ago to discuss eminent domain. First round of interviews were phone calls. She spent an hour with each woman.

Shannon spent early Tuesday afternoon with Ajai and discussed the attack by City officials with eminent domain.

Soon afterwards, Shannon met with Kathy, Don, Lisa and Ajai. So many sad memories shared; guns pointed at flood victims, forcibly kept from homes for weeks, valued possessions used to increase the height of Mt Trashmore. 

The highlight of Tuesday was the Council meeting. 

The Mayor had a proclamation to read, apparently, she didn’t care to do it. Councilman Scott Olson read the proclamation, he wasn’t in drag, but for less than a minute he was Mayor Tiffany O’Donnell. Scott seemed a bit uncomfortable. 

A citizen laughed out loud and was called out by Mayor Tiff. Soon afterwards, Lisa apologized when she approached the council to speak.

Recalling Mayor Tiff and Ann giggling and talking when she spoke at a previous meeting, Kathy asked if Mayor Tiff would apologize. I will paraphrase here, “Hell No” and that is putting it politely. 

Strike one, Lisa. Strike two, Kathy. Strike three, Ajai. As Ajai was making the case for her community, Mayor Tiff interrupted, exclaiming her time was up. It wasn’t.

Yes, Houston, we have a problem. It’s a sad day when a reporter from Houston comes to see our problems in person.

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