In the 24 years I have resided in this community I have learned that small towns and large ones are in different categories when it comes to how they deal with problems and/or manage crises.
While towns of any size can exercise bad judgment as we saw with Atlanta’s snow removal disaster, Dalton seems to be especially gifted in making the wrong call in a variety of situations. Let’s begin with the October 2013 incident at Eastbrook Middle School involving the mass suspension of students for snorting candy. Candy is a legal product but from the fuss made by school administrators you would have thought they were snorting cocaine.
Then we had the bus incident in November involving the boarding of a school bus by the Dalton Police Department. Did it occur to anyone to turn the bus around and return to school? Has it occurred to the city school board to formulate a specific written policy as to what drivers are to do in this situation? Is there one in place now? If not, there should be.
Next, I’ll cover the January incident of the gentleman arrested at a local restaurant merely because he was intoxicated and also asleep with a bottle of vinegar in his pocket. Did it occur to management that the poor fellow was probably homeless and coming in out of the cold?
Now let’s go to the granddaddy of them all, the Varnell towing incident last February. Was it really necessary to tow one car (much less 23) after the woman had been successfully transported to the local hospital? I think not!
Lastly, I’ll cover the cellphone incident at a local high school. Since when is damaging one’s own property a crime? Apparently it is in Georgia if done in a public setting.
If Dalton’s goal here is to look like a bunch of bumbling amateurs we’re certainly succeeding. But at least we’re selling newspapers and entertaining people — for now anyway. Maybe if we had more big problems to worry about we would have less time to focus on little ones.