As I have mentioned in a previous post, I live in a rural town in North Carolina and work approximately 30 miles away in a different town. When I tell people in the town I work in that I am from my hometown, they tend to make comments such as “I can’t believe you haven’t been shot.”
Some places in my hometown have over 75% of the population living below the poverty line and the crime rate is over 2 times the national average. Our roads are littered with garbage. The unemployment rate is over 12%. The average income per person is over $19,000 less than the state average. There are almost no stores in our town mall, it is literally a ghost town and while our mayor has worked to get businesses into our downtown area, many of these businesses are more expensive than what the people living here can afford.
A few weeks ago, our mayor went into Walmart and saw a shirt that said “Where in the heck is (insert hometown), North Carolina?” Now, they have these shirts for almost every town that has a Walmart around here but our mayor got offended and made a big deal out of the situation. All of these issues listed above and time is being wasted over a stupid t-shirt in Walmart. Since t-shirtgate, now when I say to someone in the town where I work that I live in my hometown, they ask about the mayor getting so worked up over the t-shirts and immediately begin ridiculing the situation. I can’t argue with them.
Earlier today, I commented on a post by the mayor on Facebook. He posted pictures of littered areas and asked if we were bothered by the litter. I stated that I was bothered by the litter and that I thought it was a more pressing issue, along with the recent string of shootings that took place over the weekend and into the beginning of this week (I believe there were 5 shootings reported in a 4 night period), than worrying about a t-shirt. Well, my comment disappeared. I have emailed the mayor to ask why my comment was removed. Now I wait to see if I even receive a reply back. I previously had a lot of respect for our mayor and thought very highly of him, now I will wait to see if and how he responds.
To be continued…
Edited to add, as of Monday, February 6, 2017, I still have not heard back from the mayor.