I attended the Glen Cove Planning Board meeting on Oct. 6 for a public hearing and noted that the waterfront was on the regular business (not on the public hearing) agenda for Amended Site Plan approval.
The planning board chair, as a courtesy to those attending, moved the business meeting for that item to the top and also, as a courtesy not required by the rules, permitted representatives from Sea Cliff and Glen Cove to speak briefly. This went very well.
At the end of the courtesy period, the board had their attorney give a history of the process (over the past 20 years) and then voted on the amended plan.
During the vote, mature adults (supposedly) started yelling and screaming, grabbing the public microphone and basically nearly inciting to riot, totally showing a lack of respect and courtesy to the board and the public. It was like a scene in a candy store where a bunch of spoiled children did not get the lollipop. I fully expected breath holding and lying on the floor kicking and was disappointed. They showed absolute disrespect for the rules and process and basically exhibited a behavior that indicated that they might violate any law if they could not get their way for something or other. They seemed to not comprehend that this type of behavior could have the exact opposite effect of that desired—in a critical situation someone might not believe a person, or might chose to take less seriously or even disregard someone who constantly is insulting and abusive.
I have often suggested that the school districts send, as a social behavior project, the high school students to these meetings to gather data and write papers on the misbehavior in public venues by supposed rational adults. These would then be used in a course on behavior and the proper way to behave and to achieve a goal. They would also learn about due process.
Of course the entertainment factor is there also and I would not want to see that gone. How boring it would be.
—Glenn Howard, Jr.