No Praise For Sadler
By Robert Tuomi
(WINDSOR, ON) – As reliable as a newly arriving VIA Train – no wait they will be less reliable because VIA is cutting the number of trains to Windsor – anyway there was the Windsor Star’s chief vanity writer and sycophant doing nothing if not praising the mayor for taking an axe to some of the comforts of life that the denizens of Windsor enjoy.
His latest vain piece of writing on June 30, 2012 featured the former boss over at the city of Windsor’s Parks and Recreation department, a Don Sadler, the same guy who has been working for years to change the outfit’s name to “Parks and Wreck” and is now a nice double dipper, taking a pension from the city and a nice paycheck to supervise the build over at the mayor’s white elephant swimming canal. Is this not just a nice reward for the devastation of the city?
Apparently, if one listens to Henderson, it is Sadler who laid the foundation for the city’s current plan to pull 18 parks from city neighborhoods, a goodly number in Ward 2 where oddly the mayor went down to defeat in the last municipal election.
In reality, Sadler should not be honored with any vanity write-ups, instead he should be pilloried for not doing much on his watch to ensure that all the city’s parks were valued and useful. Sure, he took the easy way out and had his minions at one point draft up a recommendaton that 40 city parks be pulled from the city’s green space inventory. The excuse at the time was that the play areas at these parks needed to be upgraded to meet new accessibility laws and the city could nicely loophole the process by simply getting rid of its inventory.
As unbelievable as this sounds, Sadler wanted to slap the disabled where it hurt. Possibly, and Henderson missed this, the only good news is that once Sadler was out of the department the number of parks on the hit list declined from 40 to 18. Henderson did not even ask Sadler as to why that happened. Instead he had to boast about all the so called “good” Sadler has done and lament that the city, according to some OMBI report, has more parkland than 16 other cities.
Henderson seems to prefer, as is his wont, to avoid the heavy lifting – such is often the case with vanity writers -and not conduct the hard digging given he elected not to ask Sadler the hard question that is on mind of many a city hall watcher. And that is why this same OMBI report claimed that Windsor has 26 per cent less naturalized areas than the other cities that were studied including London. Why is this not an issue?
Again, London beats Windsor.
Only one man should take the blame for this disastrous situation given that things like trees cleanse the air and provide a better quality of life. That man is Sadler.
He had the opportunity on his watch to convert so-called excess park land to naturalized areas and he could have shown innovation and lead the charge to plant more trees in the city and create neighbourhood parks remembering, as Henderson admits, that “those green spaces must have been a priceless gift at the height of the postwar baby boom.”
Henderson got that right. Green space is priceless. Take it away and all you have are hard concrete sidewalks and blistering asphalt. Instead of spending his time making the city better Sadler was plotting out a way to shrink the city to greatness. It never works.
If this column seems harsh no apologies are offered. Any civil servant who sets in motion the conditions for the mayor to start devastating public green lands and rid the community of prized and treasured amenities – all so he can feed his white elephants – is not due any praise. At least in the writer’s book.
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