We must learn from our past mistakes
Kudos to the woman for her letter about FCAT. She is quite right about FCAT being a closed club. Year after year, each interest group would pack the membership to further their agendas. The idea of not having a member-elected board was in our original group called Save the Cat. Too bad she wasn’t there, but it’s never too late.
But no matter how the board is appointed, the mission and bylaws must be made strong enough to resist abuse and the occasional troubled board.
Our Save the Cat group was present when a past board, over our objections, decided to cover the Fourth of July parade in Grass Valley as an “FCAT” function. A local videographer . . . whom we objected to most because of his underwriting . . . actually sat with the board (instead of with the public) in some sort of official capacity while this was going on. He was like a co-producer who could sell cable time for the coverage of this event.
The results were catastrophic. There was an accident, people were hurt and equipment was broken.
The initial capital outlay came from FCAT itself rather than the pocketbook (and responsibility) of an individual producer. This included the personal equipment of a camera lady.
The president of FCAT was hurt so severely that I believe a lawsuit for damages is pending. I believe that the water spraying by the fire departments was cited as the cause, and consequently, this year there seemed to be a definite “dryness” to the Fourth of July parade.
This is a point for our group I would rather have seen not made. All injuries appear to be healed, but we must learn from these mistakes and use these lessons.
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“There is a cult of ignorance in this country … nurtured by the false notion that ‘my ignorance is as good as your knowledge.'” — Isaac Asimov, 1980.