Mayor Shelby Rognstad Stuck Between Ideologies
Sandpoint, Idaho’s newest mayor, Shelby Rognstad, officially took office on Wednesday, January 6th in front of an unwelcoming crowd. As his first act, the Mayor planned to express a warm welcome to the Syrian Refugees President Obama plans to bring to the US. This welcome came through a resolution which, at the same time, enforced the acceptance that the area has had a racist past. No one on the council expected the amount of individuals from different races standing up against the sect of Islam who has a Jihadist ideology which has existed for thousands of years.
This has not been the first time contentious issues have surrounded our young mayor. While he was on the council, controversy arose which caused a divide within the city of around 10,000 people. Each time it had nothing to do with operating or improving the community but trying to manipulate the residents ideologies to accomplish a social haven.
First came the attack on the ten commandments monument, which has been sitting in the center of town, donated to the community by the Fraternal Order of Eagles, and accepted by the city in a big celebration over 50 years ago. Over 200 residents came out to a rally in support of the monument and the culture behind the monument passed down over thousands of years.
Looking at the past and turning to the future, the young Mayor has a big challenge. These philosophies are starting to come to a head across the Nation from Islam, to Liberty, to Gun control and it’s heating up in one of the most conservative parts of the country. This area boasts 3 of the most conservative State legislators, and 2 Congressman known throughout America as strong supporters of the freedom of religion. For the first time Sandpoint residents are seriously turning their efforts towards a recall, showing how hard it will be for him to convince voters to follow his plan for another 4 years.
by Christian Schwab