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Loychik’s rant demonstrates only disrespect

As an elected official himself, one would expect state Rep. Mike Loychik to demonstrate more respect for local elected officials and the decisions they make.

Earlier this week, a Cortland police officer escorted Loychik from a Lakeview Board of Education meeting, the school district where his child attends school. Loychik lives in Bazetta Township, but represents several areas of Trumbull County in the 63rd Statehouse district, including Cortland, Vienna, Lordstown, Niles, Brookfield, Hubbard, Girard, Mineral Ridge, Liberty and McDonald.

Loychik was asked to leave after he refused to follow the designated rules requiring a face mask.

That’s bad enough.

But then after Loychik was escorted out, he took to social media to lambaste school leaders.

“I was escorted out of the Lakeview school board meeting at the discretion of the cowardly Superintendent Velina J. Taylor and the cowardly board members,” he wrote. “My mission was to speak about making masks optional, and they had me escorted out by their (school resource officer) for not donning a mask. As a healthy individual, a leader and representative, I would have looked hypocritical for wearing one and will never bow down to their ridiculous mandates.”

Also, prior to leaving, Loychik told the three board members facing re-election this year to “start campaigning now.” On his subsequent social media post he vowed to offer the “full resource of any asset he could provide to their political opponents.”

We couldn’t be more disappointed in the behavior of this elected official.

Let’s face it, board of education members these days are facing a no-win situation. We strongly believe members of boards of education here in our Valley and everywhere are working hard to make the best decisions possible in an effort to keep our children and their employees safe during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, while also attempting not to overstep. In today’s divided society, these board members certainly will face harsh criticism and opposition no matter how they decide to proceed.

Our state government has made a decision, so far, to allow these decisions to be made on the local level.

Good. We support that.

But that means, then, that members of the state government should respect and abide by those local-level decisions. Certainly, it is never the right approach for anyone — especially our elected state officials — to stoop to the level of namecalling or language and web posts that are so demeaning.

Respectful responses, whether in agreement or disagreement, should never be too much to ask.

How can we expect constituents, parents and, yes, our children to act respectfully and with proper decorum if this is the example we get from an elected state official?

editorial@tribtoday.com

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