Within seconds after a citizen mentioned abortion during the public comment period during the Hagerstown Mayor & City Council Meeting, a visibly agitated seventh-term council member interrupted the calm-speaking citizen speaker and made a motion to adjourn the meeting, citing that he did not want to stay and listen — a motion that passed, leaving the few citizens present without the ability to speak or be heard.
On Tuesday night, Hagerstown’s Mayor & Council Meeting’s monthly regular session took place under the direction of Mayor Robert E. Bruchey, II, in which he led those present in an invocation and the pledge of allegiance at the start of the meeting.
“Dear Lord, thank you very much for you guidance and your wisdom and bestow upon us the ability to follow that. Amen,” Bruchey stated during his opening invocation.
According to the city’s website, the “Mayor is Chief Executive Officer of the City and is responsible for the execution of City policies, laws and resolutions.”
During this course of this month’s meeting, the mayor and city council moved to place the public comment period at the end of the meeting. When it came time for members of the public to speak, Mayor Bruchey called upon Harold King from a list of those who signed up to speak, asking him to “step up” and state his name of address.
“Yes sir, good evening. My name is Harold King. I am resident of Boonsboro, Maryland. However, our family does do most of our shopping activities here in Hagerstown, Maryland. We like it a lot here, and I want to thank you for your time this evening,” King stated in his introduction.
“I’m here tonight to talk to you about the atrocity that has been occurring in Hagerstown for many years — currently at 160 West Washington Street. That atrocity, as you may well know, is abortion — the murder of unborn humans,” King continued before being cut off by Councilman Lewis C. Metzner.
“Mr. Mayor, I move we adjourn,” Metzner, who has been a sitting council member for seven terms, agitatedly stated. “Under Robert’s Rules, that’s a precedent motion,” he continued.
“It is. I need to get a second,” the mayor stated. “Second,” Councilman Austin Heffernan injected.
Following the seconded motion, the mayor then asked if there was any “discussion.”
“I particularly don’t want to stay and listen to the conversation,” Metzner stated, who is also a private practice attorney with a law office on the same street as Hagerstown Reproductive Health Services — a facility that offers the abortion pill and is licensed to do surgical abortions, which King was expressing concern over.
“You see, God is the creator of life and that life begins at conception,” King continued, apparently not understanding the council’s procedural actions aimed at silencing his speech.
“There’s a motion on the floor,” Metzner stated with a scornful gaze toward King.
“From the moment of conception, there is a developing human life in the womb…,” King can be heard faintly speaking as Metzner, seemingly getting more angered by the continuing speech, grabs his briefcase in preparation to leave the room.
After Metzner asked for a “point of order,” the mayor then explained what was taking place, citing that “Mr. Heffernan is making a discussion during a discussion moments of a motion that was made,” and asked King to “please wait until Mr. Heffernan is finished.”
“When you want to change a law, it doesn’t do any good to go before a body that has no control whatsoever. I mean, we hear this week after week after week in citizen comments, or month after month, I should say, in citizen comments. This body has absolutely no control, even if we wanted to do, if we all agreed to do something, there’s nothing in the city charter, there’s nothing the city can do. This is a federal,” Councilman Heffernan asserted.
“So, part of the reason I’m here is because…” King attempted to respond to Heffernan’s remarks, but was prevented from saying anything else as the mayor asked if there was anymore discussion from the “body” before taking a unanimous vote to adjourn.
Hagerstown city website cites that Councilman Metzner is the “[p]ast president of his synagogue,” which according to an article in the Jewish Times is Congregation B’nai Abraham, and the only synagogue in Hagerstown.
In May of this year, both City Councilman Lew Metzner and Austin Heffernan were pictured in a news story together after the unveiling of a statue of former Washington County lawmaker Thomas Kennedy, honoring the 1800s-era man who made history by pushing a bill through the state legislature that allowed Jews to hold public office.
During the previous month’s regular session meeting on August 27, the present rabbi of Metzner’s synagogue, Ari Plost, opened the meeting with an inclusive prayer, closing with references to “all those who follow Jesus, Moses, Muhammad, and any that provide a guidance that lifts up a scared purpose.”
“[I]t’s a bedrock principle of my faith, of Judaism, that we are led towards ever-increasing freedoms and awarenesses, and ever since we’ve been liberated from Egypt to practice freely and live freely, we advance as a society to include an awareness that there are many people for whom those rights are not always extended,” Plost stated in part. “[F]or so long at least one-half of the human population, women, do not always have a full and equal voice in our society, and I’m proud to live in a country , and live in a city, where those freedoms and rights given to us by god are also extended to women in their right to choose,” he concluded.
“It was a complete surprise,” King told Christian News Network following the meeting in a telephone interview. “I would like to go back,” but stated that he is concerned that they “will do it every time.”
King, who was speaking for the first time at the council meeting, stated that he and others minister outside of the Hagerstown facility by engaging in sidewalk counseling, holding signs and pleading with women not to murder their babies.
The abortionists associated with Hagerstown Reproductive Health Services are Earl N. Mcleod and Delhi E. Thweatt, Jr., who have ended the lives of countless children, have malpractice history and a number of court filings against them.
For now, King, and the others present with him who also sought to speak, are considering what to do next. He explained that he never got the opportunity to present any counter to what Councilman Heffernan stated in being able to encourage the governing body to make Hagerstown a “sanctuary city” for the unborn — a “precedent” he cites as starting to take root in other cities, which has not been requested of the council to consider as of yet by any other citizen speaker.
King stated that other speakers during the previous two meetings had spoke about abortion and the council listened, but this time was different. King says he believes that the council’s action to move the public comment period to the end of meeting was a strategic move because of the ongoing conversation about abortion, and the council no longer wanting to hear anything about it.
The full text of King’s public comments that were not able to be presented were obtained by Christian News and are as follows:
Good evening, Mr. Mayor and City Council Members. I am a resident of Boonsboro, MD. However, our family does most of our shopping and activities here in Hagerstown. Thank you for your time this evening.
I am here tonight to talk to you about the atrocity that has been occurring in Hagerstown for many years, currently at 160 West Washington Street. That atrocity is abortion, the murder of unborn humans.
You see, God is the creator of life and that life begins at conception. From the moment of conception, there is a developing human life in the womb. Think for a minute, nothing grows if it is not living.
From conception to birth, regardless of the stage of development, there is a human in the womb, a human life. This is why abortion is murder and why abortion is wrong at any stage, for any reason.
Mr. Mayor and Council members, I implore you to take seriously your responsibility before God to give these innocent unborn children the protection and chance at life they deserve. Make Hagerstown, MD a sanctuary city for the unborn. Start the conversation about an approach to ban all abortions in Hagerstown.
On a final note, you may have heard it said that what we believe is not what’s important, but it’s that what we believe is true. That’s what’s important. And the truth is that we will all stand before God as Judge and give an account for our lives — every thought, word and deed.
That should be a sobering thought for us all. I urge you to turn to Christ today and put your trust in Him alone to forgive your sins and He will not only grant you everlasting life, He will give you a new heart, a heart for these helpless children being led to the slaughter in your city.
Brief bios and contact information for the members of the Hagerstown City Council can be found on the city’s website.
Please visit Christian News Network’s Outlaw Abortion page to help us work to abolish the worldwide holocaust.