I am writing in response to letters from former Coun. Allan Bisback and resident Jean O’Malley in your April 27 edition about the special council meeting about Randwood, held at the community centre.
Deputy Lord Mayor Erwin Wiens, a former police officer, is well-schooled in the decorum and ethical canons of courtroom proceedings and meetings of this kind.
As part of his former professional training, he would be skilled at reading a room (the crowd) and was simply exercising certain cautionary guidelines to those in attendance lest the meeting evolved into a free-for-all.
Yes, in every crowd there can be a few grandstanding, attention-seekers intent on disrupting and distracting from the proceedings.
Accordingly, Wiens sensed and measured the opposing contentious atmosphere and his instructions to the audience were appropriate in the circumstances.
I suspect the complaints about his guidance represented a small minority, the majority wishing they would just stay silent and focus instead on the presenters’ detailed opposing points of view .
This was a well-organized and structured meeting. All parties were suitably represented by a slate of presenters, including professional architects and legal counsel.
It was not supposed to be a sports bar atmosphere with cheering and clapping for winners and losers.
It had more of a corporate shareholder atmosphere. Think also of court proceedings, where unruly, disruptive attendees are ejected from the proceedings.
Mr. Bisback, a former council member, is out of order suggesting Wiens should undertake management and communications training.
It is Mr. Bisback and the few disrespectful attendees who should undertake such a course of study.