The King of Distractions
Mayor Anthony Silva posted a long, sometimes odd, and sometimes risible defense on his Facebook Page. Then he took it down. Here it is, with a few comments at the end, if you can make it that far.
“Innocent until proven guilty is what we tell ourselves about the justice system. But we all know too well that in the court of “public opinion” it is just the opposite and its far too easy to cast judgement based on what we read in tabloid newspapers struggling to keep a readership or on 2 minute TV news segment.
“The truth is that “the elite” and “old guard” never wanted me to become Mayor and they have made it extremely difficult. They control both local written media and some local law enforcement.
“I am not perfect and I am human. Many would expect me to be held to a higher standard. The role of representing 300,000 people is very serious and I have been “The Peoples Mayor. I fight for people who don’t know me and who don’t like me. I fight for the poor and middle class. I fight for the residents who deserve a second chance in life so they can support their families.
“I haven’t always had my finest moments during the past few years. and I have mentored people and trusted them. I have given my trust to easily. Whenever I have let my guard down, the Record Newspaper has been there to exaggerate and blow things out of proportion. Being anything less then perfect when you have a huge target on your back is a very dangerous game in Stockton.
“Yes, I got into a limo one night in 2014 and I shouldn’t have. Yes, I wore a bathrobe and put up signs and a ” anonymous source” sent the picture to the Record. Yes, I did have (2) guns stolen by either house movers, a robbery where I identified suspects, or by someone close to me. Once I knew for sure weapons were stolen, I reported them.
“I also had my car broken into and items stolen that were never recovered. Have you ever heard of the media releasing the person’s name who got their property stolen?
“When I was in China, my former roommate got together with one of Councilmember Tubbs best friends and had a party at my house. I was so shocked once I returned home. Although I did anticipate a few attacks and alleged scandals exactly (3) months before this coming election, I miscalculated one thing and I am so disgusted and angry. THEY MADE MY SON CRY!
“Politics in Stockton is dirty so anything usually goes….but this is way too much over the top. My lawyers will not let me comment on the current situation and they will not even be happy when they learn I made this post, but I must because I can’t eat or sleep. This is nothing more then a episode of Game of Thrones or House of Cards.
“I’m going to tell you a story that I haven’t told many people. When I was elected to the Stockton Unified Board, I wanted to be with the “in crowd” or more powerful people. There was a Trustee named Dr. Glen Dolberg, a very popular Delta College Professor. He would not comply and do what the others wanted him to do. Finally they gave him one last chance. He still said “No”. I was told that he would be “taken out politically.” A few weeks later there were allegations made about him and he gracefully retired and said goodbye with one last email. The only problem was that I knew he did nothing wrong and the bullies planned it from the start. But I also did nothing to speak out on his behalf because I was scared of them too.
“The point is…..I have spent a lifetime in this City and there are plenty of you out there that know what I have done to make Stockton better and “challenge the system.” All my votes with the exception of the (Chloromines) in 2013 have been spot on with the will and desire of the people.
“I will not be bullied and muzzled by people in power.
“The intention of the latest headlines is not designed to convict me of anything, rather to take my only strength; “The People” away from me with public perception. I want to tell you so much more and answer all your questions but “the haters” are also reading this too and I must protect myself.
“When a member of the City Council got arrested for a DUI, I did not judge. I got on TV and said it wasn’t worth throwing away his entire career.
“I know you don’t have all the facts yet….however all of this should seem just ” odd and suspicious” to you. Just look at the timing with me first getting hit with the gun story and now this. They did this simply to embarrass me and make me throw in the towel and quit. They can’t risk a total shakedown of City Hall. There is too much at stake.
“These people have towed my car, reduced my salary by $30,000, leaked confidential information to the Record for the past 3.5 years and soon you will learn more. Also imagine if someone illegally searched through everything on your cell phone and spent a year looking through your pictures and messages. You have nothing to hide right?
“Yes, now I know what it feels like to be harassed. I really thought I was being arrested for murders. They couldn’t call me in or just come over to my house? The media was planted to cause a circus and they were first on the scene.
“So you have 2 choices. Believe everything you see and hear in the media or take a chance and open your mind to what I am saying. All your questions will be answered in due time. One day you or someone in your family may get into a scrape and you might need my help. I can honestly say I will never judge you until I have all the facts but for now you have every right to think ill of me if you believe the allegations and feel my career and life should be thrown away.
“I am innocent of any criminal activity and it will be proven in a court of law.
“They say when times get tough we know who our friends really are and the past few days I have learned who really cares about me and my son. I know for a fact that Stockton was getting pounded in the media before I became Mayor and this town was in bankruptcy and chaos. Now things are much better in our City except now I am getting pounded by the media. I will continue to pray and I will continue to fight!
• I imagine there are still some credulous souls who accept Silva’s characterization of this paper as “tabloid.” But I have heard from scores like Edward Garrison, who writes, “Your were right all along about Silva.”
• Playing Stocktonians off against each other — which Silva does with rhetoric about “the elite” — shows he’s willing to sew division and distrust to save his political career.
• Saying of some never-named oligarchy, “They control both local written media and some local law enforcement” is cray-cray. Who are these people who control me? My professional ethics and sense of duty to readers controls me. I felt early on there were disturbing signs that Silva was not worthy of office.
• “I haven’t always had my finest moments during the past few years.” That’s as close as Silva ever comes to taking personal responsibility for anything.
• “Have you ever heard of the media releasing the person’s name who got their property stolen?” Silva has always been amazingly obtuse about the news standard that applies to a public official. He acted as if he couldn’t see why, for instance, it was news that a mayor got himself handcuffed after a drunken fiasco in a limousine. He constantly tries to delegitimize not only media but the standards of the adult world.
• So the wild parties neighbors report Silva’s house are the fault of one of Michael Tubbs’ best friends. The blame game goes to hilarious lengths. Silva makes no mention of coming out to the curb late at night and his “hand-to-hand exchanges” with people in cars.
• “My lawyers will not let me comment on the current situation and they will not even be happy when they learn I made this post.” Another example of Silva’s self-destructive behavior. His lawyer says don’t comment, so he comments, at length. Next, perhaps, Silva will realize his lawyers are part of the conspiracy.
• “When a member of the City Council got arrested for a DUI, I did not judge.” Yes, and this rare moment of grace brought deserved rewards. The million-pound craphammer with which Silva is pounding himself would be two million pounds had Silva got an a high horse and tormented Tubbs about his DUI.
• “All of this should seem just “odd and suspicious” to you. Just look at the timing with me first getting hit with the gun story and now this. They did this simply to embarrass me and make me throw in the towel and quit.” Silva should try his case in court. Instead he tarnishes honest law enforcement people and honest journalists in a forlorn attempt at political self-preservation.
• “Now things are much better in our City …” Hello? Our city has gotten bad press all over the Western world.
• ”I will continue to pray and I will continue to fight!” A bid for support from the evangelicals in his base. Likely some are praying for Silva. I’m praying for Stockton.