Montgomery politicians have a long, sordid history of looking backward, not forward when drafting legislation. Assuming the action you took on this extreme request was motivated by a sincere desire to be responsive to constituents and not simply political payback for a colleague or campaign contributor, I am offering an alternative extreme proposal for you to consider.
In the late 1800s when these two communities became cities, the 3-mile trip between the city centers was a greater journey than it is today. Keeping in mind the adage, “A rising tide lifts all boats,” why not consider using that legislative pen of yours to combine these two cities, eliminating duplication of city services while dramatically priming the entire area for growth, instead of propping one city up whilst pulling the legs out from under the other?
Increasing the size and relative strength of our community in this way would likely improve our region’s attractiveness to industry and tourism, while avoiding an additional application of the centuries-old stench of racism and classism in Alabama, which permeate almost everything and would hang over this proposed de-annexation like a black cloud, forever. And, it would not toss Anniston’s people and businesses under the proverbial bus to benefit a few greedy “want to be in Oxford” Anniston homeowners.
Whatever your response to this de-annexation scheme, please keep in mind the people of this county are anxiously watching and waiting. Your reputation, your legacy as the leader of Alabama’s state Senate and much more importantly, the future of thousands of Alabamians are at stake.
James R. (Jim) Moore