Our Nero in Washington is fiddling with "fake news," "healthy young people," "hope," "China virus", "just like a cold" and "hydroxychloroquine. " But Rome is burning! Last count 209 burned and three consumed in River Falls. After six months of the "fire" of COVID, our City Council "recommends" facemasks. Six months to recommend. Nero is fiddling here, too.

River Falls City Council member Ben Plunkett used emotionally laden language to call attention to the flame of COVID and how to fight it. He got censured. Council said he was not respectful, professional, or civil. That's coming close to killing the messenger, folks. Dr. Tony Fauci, whose professional responsibility is to keep us informed in health crises, is doing is job, This messenger and his family are now getting death threats.

READ MORE: River Falls City Council censures member for ‘derogatory and unprofessional’ comments in face mask debates

What is really unprofessional, disrespectful and uncivil is for City Council, whose job it is to help keep us safe, to renege on that responsibility. That is dereliction of duty.

Hurrah to Plunkett!

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I've memorized Ben's poetic imagery. To quote: "I urge you to stop being a rancid tub of ignorant contagion and start acting like you care about the life and health of others." I love it. Truth to power, folks! We need more like Ben.

L. Berkey

River Falls