116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
I wish to express my dismay at the behavior Mayor Brad Hart exhibited when dealing with the event hosted by CSPS.
As a former director of a nonprofit agency, I am familiar with the rules governing the 501(c)(3) status. Indeed, it is prohibited to use this favorable tax status as a political forum. However, what is upsetting is the methods used by Hart.
His language, as shown in The Gazette on July 17 (“CSPS cancels event featuring Amara Andrews after Cedar Rapids Mayor Brad Hart warns director of losing funds”), borders on coercion and his use of profanity exemplifies a personality unfit to govern.
If he had really just wanted to prevent a violation, he could have used a more positive approach such as suggesting other candidates also participate in the event. Instead, he was clearly reacting emotionally and was feeling threatened by the event. This begs the question — is this the person we want the rest of the state and country to see when they think of Cedar Rapids?
This occurrence has caused me to feel I will vote against Mayor Hart — a poor commentary but an all too familiar one in recent times. As voters, we need to look at a candidate not with what he or she says, but rather what kind of person they are and what place emotionally they operate from. Had we done that a few years back, our country would be in a very different place now.