Public debate has sufficiently exposed potential environmental impacts of the proposed zoning change as well as congestion in residential neighborhoods. The endless push for detached apartments in residential neighborhoods rages on, and some on the Rockland City Council continue to ignore public questioning. It’s long since time we start asking ourselves what the true motive is here and why we do not have any answers to our questions.

Where is the demand for this zoning change? I have been offered no credible evidence of demand for this, which leads me to believe it is purely ideological, following trends in other local government bodies in the U.S. When you are finished reading this, all you need to do is Google “zoning laws are racist” and you will find partisan studies, blogs and government efforts to eliminate or reduce residential zoning because it is believed to be “inherently unjust.” Eliminating or modifying residential zoning will provide racial and economic equity, according to the Pratt Institute.

That’s right, our zoning laws are “racist and unjust” because we have exclusive residential zoning that only allows single-family residences in some of these zones. It’s the phenomenon of cancel culture, growing like mold in a petri dish right here in our own city hall, and it needs to stop. Pardon me if I don’t want a yurt outside my kitchen window.

E.C. Moran Jr. wrote the Rockland City Charter, which has since become a model nationally to aid other cities in reducing the drag partisan politics has on city administration. By rooting out partisan politics, his model greatly improved municipal efficiency and has since been adopted all over the country. We as residents of Rockland should be proud of that. However, if you continually have a clique of like-minded individuals driven by hyper-partisan beliefs change policy off national trends, then this system does not work correctly. As residents, we have a duty to demand that no agenda, liberal or conservative, belongs in city hall.

Let the public vote on it to settle the issue.

Ian Emmott, Rockland