After accusing scores of Valdostans, who worked to diligently get their neighbors to the voting polls, of “not canvassing” and essentially getting paid to vote; after giggling as his co-host ranted about the need for the undemocratic practice of “voter suppression,” after joking about his co-host advocating for the need for “poll tests” and after suggesting the those fake voting “canvassers” went and cashed their canvassing checks at “the liquor store,” the Mayor of Valdosta seems incapable of self-reflection and remorse?
In fact, when informed by City Councilman (Eric) Howard, in the last City Council meeting, that his comments had offended many of the hard-working city employees that keep Valdosta running, the mayor remained silent and immediately adjourned the meeting? And as of (last) week, the mayor has publicly stated that he is being “punished for simple speech” and now portrays himself as a victim of “cancel culture”?
As has been his tendency, Mayor Matheson, who received the ethics complaint against him on the same day it was filed with the city, has remained silent, only to say that it was not filed correctly?
When he finally publicly commented on his radio show, eight days later, he simply complained that The Valdosta Daily Times failed to report, on the front-page banner, that he had finally issued a statement? And in his official response on Feb. 16, he was adamant that he has done no wrong and that the ethics complaint is simply a matter of a “difference of opinion” with him?
In all, Mayor Matheson’s repeated refusal to simply discuss how he speaks as the Mayor of Valdosta on his conservative radio show, and his divisive commentary and unsubstantiated rhetoric, forced members of this community to file the ethics complaint he now faces.
His silence and suggestion that he now is the real victim in this matter speaks volumes. Simply put, it demonstrates unequivocally that he is incapable of and/or uninterested in reflecting upon how his divisive, inflammatory and unsubstantiated comments impacted those he was elected to serve.
That is one of many reasons it is painfully clear that he is unable to fulfill his mayoral responsibilities and should not be in office.
Concerned Clergies of Valdosta:
Dr. Bruce Francis, executive committee & membership
Dr. Mark Patrick George, The Mary Turner Project
Rev. Daren Neal, NAACP Lowndes chapter
Rev. Jimmy Boyd, Valdosta/Lowndes Community Alliance