Speak Your Mind, Lose Your Job

If the county can reach all the way into the private life of an employee and administer punishment for offensive and inflammatory speech, how can Peggi McKinley expect to be protected, especially when she was only a nonpaid appointee, not a salaried staffer? As attorney Kraftchick says, "The people with the least protection are those appointed by elected officials."

As unpleasant as it must be for an honorable fellow like Lee Kraftchick to defend a scumbag like Bruce Kaplan, he will be doing so with considerable legal support and with an important principle at stake: Within limits an elected official should be free to shape a staff of paid aides and volunteer appointees who share his or her political philosophy. Citizens who don't approve of the politician's conduct in that sphere can take their revenge at the next election.

Had the reprehensible Mr. Kaplan not been forced to resign, I'd like to think he would have paid the price at the polls for the Peggi McKinley affair. I know I would have enjoyed the opportunity to exercise my own right of free speech in exhorting voters to throw the bum out.

jim_mullin@miaminewtimes.com

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