The disintegration of democracy

2/3/16 Houston County NewsBy Ryan Stotts

There’s a moment in William Golding’s classic novel, “Lord of the Flies,” and it’s chilling, and it reads exactly like this: “Maybe there is a beast … maybe it’s only us.”

For students of literature, you already know the novel details of the complete disintegration of democracy under the most savage of circumstances.

You can now set down your books, because that same disintegration is happening at the Houston County Board meetings, and it’s by no means fictional.

A visit to a county board meeting is equal parts demoralizing, dispiriting and denigrating these days.

The five-member board, whose commissioners have long ceased to function in any reasonable way, offers us disintegration in the word’s coldest and cruelest definitions: The process of losing cohesion or strength, and the process of coming to pieces.

There are serious flaws in commissioners’ practices, decorum and their adherence to the necessary rules of democracy, and how they’ve been allowed to come to such a dire-that-won’t-end should frighten every citizen in Houston County.

The meetings, which have long since turned into battling matches between chairman Judy Storlie and commissioner Justin Zmyewski, often detract from serious violations from the other commissioners with a ring-side seat.

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