A couple of suggestions about what to do with the statue of President McKinley:
There is a famous fountain in Brussels called the "Manneken Pis." It's a little boy taking a whiz. On special occasions they dress him up. As a way to defuse the current political tensions regarding the McKinley statue on the plaza, why not dress him up? There would have to be rules for the costumes — nothing offensive or political. And they must be humorous. Local businesses could award prizes for the best costumes.
Or, my favorite idea: If the removal vote passes, and because Arcata proudly calls itself a bicycle-friendly city, why not replace him with a statue of the Monty Python character Bicycle Repair Man?
He could be dressed up for special occasions, too. I don't think he'd mind.
Charles Davy, Bayside
The McKinley statue removal is projected at $65,000, or 0.16 percent of the $41 million budget. Thirty-one projects have been approved, which will include $525,000 on road improvements (potholes etc.), $167,000 on creek and trail work, $150,000 for new bleachers at the Arcata Ball Park and $25,000 on manholes.
The city will also spend $347,000 for merely designing hoped-for improvements to the community, which demonstrates the belief that communities are not stagnant. Notable, too, is the private donor who gave $298,000 to the city for a futsal court. This certainly lends credence to Karen Diemer's assurance that one person has offered to pay the entire cost of relocation, even out of state, and that a "handful" of people have offered to pay all relocation costs within the county. You can learn more at www.historicjusticealliance.org Vote NO on M — remove McKinley.
Joel Morrison , McKinleyville