As a woman I have to say I found Jan Flory’s observation about Travis Kiger being intimidated by strong, older women pretty comical. The inference of course is that Jan Flory is a strong, older woman; and that as a corollary, Travis is a weak, younger man, possibly, Flory speculated, because his mommy didn’t nurse him long enough.
And now I ask you to dispel the image of Jan Flory nursing anything (warm blooded) herself to gain mommy experience, as I pursue my essay.
The implication that Travis Kiger is weak, and is in any way fearful of Jan Flory, I leave until the end to address. First I will start with Mrs. Flory’s self-description.
I note that Mrs. Flory bolts out of the starting gate with the implication that she is the victim of ageism and sexism. I am no longer offended by limousine liberals whipping out victimhood status, although generally they apply it to which ever class or race they happen to be pandering to.
Jan Flory isn’t “older.” She is old. She is probably in her seventies. That’s a fact and it’s germane, given the total lack of leadership and intellectual perspicacity, delivered by her “esteemed” elderly friends Bankhead, Jones and McKinley who were also in their eighth decade.
Age is a reality. You can try to hide it with lots of cosmetic surgery, but you can’t hide an ossified mindset locked in forty-year time lag. It reveals itself in rigid thought and its addiction to empty clichés, and meaningless abstractions.
Flory is strong, she says. Must we take her word for it? As a structural engineer I know that some materials such as unreinforced concrete or cast iron appear very strong; and so they are – in compression. Yet they lack strength in tension. They are not flexible and their very rigidity makes them comparatively brittle. And brittle is a term I would apply to the speech and demeanor of Jan Flory at the City Council microphone. Perhaps there is an underlying hysteria waiting to erupt. If it ever does, the crack-up will not be pretty, either.
“Strong” people of neither gender advertise their strength. The fact that Mrs. Flory finds it necessary to do so is a pretty clear indication of an underlying insecurity and inherent weakness.
It seems to have escaped Mrs. Flory’s notice that people may dislike her not because she is a strong, older woman, but because she seems to be an inflexible, humorless, mean, self-righteous scold – a veritable literary stereotype, in fact.
And then there is the Flory Record to consider, amply described on the pages of FFFF. Her previous years on the Fullerton City Council are informed by failure. Flory voted to approve an illegal tax on our water for six years; which also means she never balanced a legitimate budget. She gave away City property and streets worth millions to her developer friends. She voted to retroactively spike the pensions of “public safety” employees, burying the taxpayers and citizens under a multi-hundred million dollar mountain of unfunded pension liability.
And then there is the Flory Inaction: totally MIA about the murder of the mentally ill homeless man at the hands of Fullerton cops. Is that the behavior of a “strong, older woman” or the pitiful cowardice of an entropic, conscienceless fossil? What does Jan Flory think about the crime wave perpetrated by members of the Fullerton Police Department, including the sexual assaults by Albert Rincon that even elicited disgust from a federal judge? Well we do know that she actually gave her pal ex-Chief Pat McKinley an award of some kind after all the bad FPD news and after a multi-hundred thousand dollar settlement was reached in the Rincon matter.
As with many of Fullerton’s “strong, older women (and men)” it has been more important for Flory to back the sclerotic Fullerton establishment to the hilt, rathert than uncover the stinky morass in the FPD. Flory actually wants to hire more cops without reforming the department. Flory seems to think somebody in Fullerton really wants this retrograde attitude. Of course the voters will decide, but I doubt anybody wants to backtrack to the days of complete unaccountability in City Hall that marked the Flory years.
Now as far as Travis Kiger is concerned I will say this. He is one of the most courageous people I know. He has endured the threats and vulgar vituperation of the FPOA trolls on this site with equanimity. They have attacked him and his family, posting his home address long before he was a public figure. He has never backed down. That’s because he believes in principles, one of which is taking responsibility for his decisions. That’s pretty refreshing. And that’s strength.
Travis is thirty-three years old. I sincerely doubt if Jan Flory has embraced a new idea in over forty.