Clyde Wilhelm must resign
Clyde Wilhelm must resign
Why this petition matters
At the May 4th, 2022 borough council meeting, council censored two public comments about recent anti-Semitic remarks made publicly by Fire Chief and Code Enforcement Officer Clyde Wilhelm during the April 27 meeting and previously (quotes below) toward Jewish council person Abigail Salisbury. We demand transparency, that the borough put non-discrimination policies in place, for Wilhelm to resign his position, and for Chris Ansell to apologize for censoring the public. If the council refuses to acknowledge and respond to this request, we the residents will take appropriate action.
From the 4/27 meeting: 1:23:00 for context; 1:24:52 for Wilhelm’s response; 3:09:06 for Salisbury’s final remarks about previous anti-semitic comments
Wilhelm stated “the pandemic is over and you’re asking us to show you our papers - that’s reminiscent of something that didn’t turn out too well” - a common far right talking point equating the vaccine records with Nazi Holocaust tactics, and equating Salisbury with Nazis. At the end of the meeting Salisbury addressed this comment and referred to a previous encounter with Wilhelm during which he asked her “why are you people always trying to crucify everyone?”
Following these comments on the May 4th meeting, Swissvale Council President Chris Ansell refused to read the two public comments, citing liability and stating he “had been cautioned by the solicitor [Robert McTiernan of Tucker Arensberg]” to not read the comments because they contained accusations against Wilhelm that could be construed as coming from Ansell (because he is reading them). This is the only way to make public comment, and no other comments - including a variety of other accusations - have ever been censored, with the exception of a campaign statement submitted as a comment.
Swissvale Community Action Coalition decries this anti-semitism and censorship.
We encourage residents to:
- Sign onto & share this petition that advocates for disciplinary action for Wilhelm, and transparency of censored public comments, & demands council read the public comments
- Email Council to take action
- Contact the ACLU about this clear violation of all of our free speech rights
[COPY & PASTE TEMPLATES BELOW HERE]
EMAIL COUNCIL ACTION:
firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; Alfonsowells4swissvale@gmail.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com;
I am a concerned resident of Swissvale that is outraged at the recent censorship and anti-Semitic remarks that happened at the April 27 and May 4 meetings. I demand that the council take action and that Clyde Wilhelm resign his position and release the comments that have been censored.
EMAIL ACLU ACTION:
Go to this link: https://www.aclupa.org/en/complaint-form
Fill out your name & information, then under “subject of complaint” :
Swissvale Borough Council
7560 Roslyn Street
ISSUE: Freedom of Speech
DATE OF INCIDENT: May 4, 2022
DETAILS: At May 4th’s borough council meeting, council censored two public comments about recent anti-Semitic remarks made publicly by Fire Chief and Code Enforcement Officer Clyde Wilhelm during the April 27 meeting and previously (quotes below) toward Jewish council person Abigail Salisbury.
ACTIONS TAKEN: Link this petition
ACLU ACTIONS: Demand the release of the public comments that have been censored, and demand Swissvale create a way for residents to speak for themselves during virtual public meetings.