to the editor from this week's Chronicle:
To the Editor
I understand that Mealer’s alleged abuse of public trust may extend back many years, the investigation of which has been taken out of the hands of Sheriff Giddings by the Idaho State Police; even the BATF and other government entities have taken an interest in the case. We have been told many times there would be a decision forthcoming, but the date is continually pushed back.
For those who feel that Mealer ought to be fired, outright, should know that wouldn’t solve the issue. The people of Idaho and Nez Perce Counties, along with Skott Mealer, all deserve to have this case heard and have either innocence or guilt declared under our system of laws.
Personally, I am not for or against Skott Mealer, my concern is that our legal system work and those government official entrusted to administer the law act in accordance with what is expected of them by their constituency. Likewise, the public has a responsibility as well. In this case, it seems that issues go back to some previous Idaho County Commissioners, Sheriffs, Registrars, Prosecutors, etc.
The Idaho County Commissioners, whose job it has been to see that this Mealer situation is taken care of appears to have dropped the ball. Chapter 8 of Idaho Title 31 (31-802) indicates that our Idaho County Commissioners have, among other things: (1) the responsibility over the “conduct” of all County officers; (2) the obligation to properly handle the “disbursement of the public moneys” (seeing that Mealer is drawing about $40,000 a year for doing nothing); (3) the task to see that all county officials “perform their duties,” and (4) they are to direct the “prosecution for delinquencies” in such matters. Yet they have done little, if anything at all, to bring this matter to closure. If the matter is settled out of court, leaving any “evidence” hidden from the public view, justice will not be served for any party concerned.
Hopefully, in this country, one is still innocent until proven guilty, and Mealer still has that right. We citizens of Idaho County have the responsibility to demand that the charges be taken to court so his innocence or guilt can be publicly revealed. If Mealer is found innocent, he has the right that people know of it; if guilty, they ought to know that as well. In any event, this matter has lingered long enough, and our Idaho County Commissioners ought to apply some influence towards Nez Perce County to bring closure on this issue.
We need a public grass-roots response, by contacting family and friends in Idaho and Nez Perce Counties, encourage others to write letters or make phone calls to the Commissioners and legislators on this issue demanding something be done.
If “We the People” of Idaho County do not stand up and take responsibility for the welfare of our own community, then we have no right to gripe at the kind of government we receive. Because of silence on important issues, middle-of-the-roaders are not entitled to liberty; they are only entitled to that which they sanction by their silence and mediocrity. Stand up and be responsible, people. If you don’t – who will?