Testing the Memory of Past MCC Board President George Lowe

The following article form Feb. 3, 2008, might give current readers an idea of the past service of McHenry County College Board candidate George Lowe.

Lowe seeks to return to the Board for a six-year term.

The Daily Herald seems to be the first newspaper to notice that their photographers’ First Amendment rights have been compromised by a ban on flash photography at McHenry County College Board meetings.

Since the Daily Herald rarely sends reporters to the meetings (I think the last time was by special invitation to the unannounced meeting about the baseball stadium), reporter Lenore Adkins discovered the ban by reading McHenry County Blog.

“Moreover, the board chairman now has the power to ‘limit an individual’s ability to photograph any portion of the board meeting’ if it interferes with the proceedings, leading local blogger Cal Skinner to question whether that’s a violation of the First Amendment,”

the article says.

Here’s what is in the resolution:

”In addition, the Board Chair may limit an individual’s ability to photograph any portion of the Board meeting if it is determined that the photography is interfering with the proceedings as they occur.”

It is hard for me to think of how taking non-flash pictures would interfere “with the proceedings as they occur.”

Maybe that means I couldn’t stand out in the hall and take flash pictures (like the one above) of the real estate folks who want to lease or sell land to the college beyond the 67-acre Gilger property (which is north and south of the road that runs from the MCC campus to Ridgefield Road), if caused Lowe to lose concentration on the top secret, hush hush activites going on inside the board room.

Lowe was in a white-hot fury when he issued this order after the meeting:

”There will be no flashes at the Monday Board meeting!

“You’ve been warned!”

Lowe then remembers my saying,

”Pass a resolution.”

Well, he’s close.

I said,

“You’ll have to pass a resolution.”

right after I took this non-flash picture of the map on the plasma screen in front of which Lowe was walking.

I said that because he was acting like he thought he only alone could make such a decision.

Then, as you can read in my original article, Lowe walked across the room to MCC President Walt Packard and proceeded to violate the minority member squashing agenda-setting standard that he had outlined in the meeting.

When college board members were present, Lowe said he only wanted to consider subjects at meetings upon which there a consensus had been reached.

But, Lowe ordered Packard,

”First thing on the agenda—a resolution.

“No flashes at the board meeting.”

How do I know what was said?

I wrote it down as Lowe was storming out the door. (A fuzzy, non-flash picture of Lowe’s exit is contained in the article.)

Packard complied.

This notice given the public on the MCC website:

Item 5:

Anyone who can figure out what this is all about, raise your hand?

The item was considered before public comment, just as the board majority censured Scott Summers and Donna Kurtz before public comment. (The picture you see was taken with a flash from the corner where I was able to find a spot to sit on the floor during the crowded censure meeting. The location gave me a chance to take the flash picture below of former Crystal Lake Park Board member Leona Nelson presenting a rose and an American flag to Donna Kurtz after the board voted 4-3 for censure. I think it pretty well captures the mood of the audience.)

In the article, Lowe compares me with “paparazzi who tail celebrities, saying the blogger stops at nothing to get his shot and photographs board members from multiple angles and at close range.”

I certainly admit to taking pictures from different angles from along the edge of the small room. That’s so I can get pictures of the board members facing both left and right, so I can put board members’ pictures on the right and left side of the page. I try to make the pages pleasing to the eye.

Illinois Press Association attorney Don Craven told the Daily Herald that the board has the right to limit flash photography:

“Allowing the board to do its business without being inundated with flashes is a reasonable governmental purpose. It’s just unfortunate that (Skinner’s) activities will lead to limitations on everybody.”

I have never seen any newspaper send a photographer to this junior college’s board meetings. At the board meeting in question, no newspaper even sent a reporter.

Craven was not quoted on whether Lowe has the right to prohibit photography completely.

My guess is that he does not, but I am no more a lawyer than Lowe.

Only time will tell how Lowe will use his newly granted power.


Testing the Memory of Past MCC Board President George Lowe — 19 Comments

  1. Thank you sunshine blogger for your courageous contribution to the freedom of the press.

    We owe to your courage the image of the lunatic guy holding a sign asking to fire all teachers from MCC for political views.

    Never mind that you had no opportunity to take pictures of the large amount of people asking the board not to fire the 4 full time counselors, particularly Luisa Lauf, whose contribution to MCC students was highlighted. 2018, please don’t delay.

  2. and you take pics very well, if condemned then they Must video all proceedings so they are and can be purchased upon request !

    You will not hide board members we the People will be there.

  3. You’re commenting under the wrong article, but, in explanation, my computer would not take the photos I took that night.

    A Friend of McHenry County Blog sent the one you saw.

  4. People who love to take pictures can be a irritation when they go over board.

    The Anti-Trump Walkers – Part 9, is prove positive someone has an addiction.

    At these board meetings, it’s what’s being said that counts, not a still picture my friend.

  5. NO to Lowe.

    They don’t need a re-tread of an old board member. He was a POS to Summers and Kurtz when they decided the baseball field was a bad deal for the college and the community.

  6. Oh man that guy was great! Standing there amidst the ones asked to come and speak on behalf of the people being let go.
    They SHOULD fire teachers that push their political agenda without hesitation! That’s not what teachers are there for.
    Maybe this will teach the students what teachers are really there for. Unintended consequences sometimes are the greatest ‘teachable moments’ and in this case the one’s being schooled are the Teachers.

  7. Cal maybe your memory is in need of testing.

    No flash in the board room was because of the sensative to flash/light art on display in that room.

    Did you not know, forget, or just kind of left that fact out?

  8. It’s spelled proof positive. Not whatever that was that you tried to call it. Maybe you should contact Angel for an English lesson. And yes, you are an idiot. Proof positive by your complaint about a plethora of pictures. You have no idea who Cal is if you get in his face on his blog over photography.

  9. It’s a valid excuse not to want donated valueable art damaged.

    No flash works every where you go, try it you’ll learn to like it.

  10. You are an idiot, Nob.

    Cal wasn’t doing flash photography.

    What does your stupid opinion have to do with this issue, besides bolstering a fake scenario?

    BTW that lie that you swallowed is a Jedi mind trick.

    Totally bogus claim.

    Flash photography damages nothing.

    That’s how truly stupid you are!

    But again, what does that have to do with the price of eggs in China!?

  11. No it does not! Not in the way you think. It is a lie. You like to believe lies. You don’t know what caused the original bruhaha. You do not understand that it was an excuse to get Cal out of there. Same as the museums with their lies. Move along, nothing to see here. It was an excuse they use to keep you moving. It worked really well to indoctrinate quite a few people with that lie. You and this knucklehead actually bought the lie.

  12. Cindy I talked to George yesterday, I know the facts, they are as stated.
    Have a good day Gadfly!

  13. Nob? When someone painstakingly tries to explain truth to you, you call it annoying. That is very ignorant of you and more like quite the petulant child. Your facts are based on lies. Talk all you want to “George”. Calling someone’s lies a fact doesn’t change anything. The truth is that nothing any of you can say will change that truth. You have no idea what is in a person’s heart. You have no idea what the “Deal” was. All you know is what he told you his reasoning was.

    Just the fact that he used such a terrible excuse to get “rid of Cal” (Go away son, you bother me”.) tells me that he was a real piece of work back then.

    I don’t doubt that he is still a real “piece of work”. You Nob? Have no clue how to read past the false fronts. Talking to a jerk doesn’t make him less of a jerk.

  14. Perhaps your wings are flapping as much as your lips so it’s impossible to focus on the facts.

    What ever Gadfly.

  15. There are 5 candidate on the ballot for (2) 6 year terms for McHenry County College Trustee in the April 4, 2014 election:

    – Linda Liddell (incumbent)

    – Diane Evertsen (previously on County Board, conservative)

    – David Schenk (running with Evertsen on MCCommonSense slate)

    – Thomas Allen (Tom Allen) – On Friends of McHenry County College Foundation Board

    – George Lowe (previously on MCC Board)

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