I'm old school. I'm giving you the bottom line up front. John Turner got my vote to be our next Walla Walla County sheriff.
The choice was clear and my decision was made months ago. Recent "revelations" haven't swayed me one iota.
In fact, they set off all those little alarm bells that warn of approaching danger when something doesn't seem to ring true. The more attacks I saw on Turner, the more bells went off. It began to seem like we could hold a holiday chorale with the variety of them all going off.
Here are some especially loud, notable "bells":
The first bell rang out loudly from the misrepresentations others made about Turner's status while deployed in Iraq. Everything I could find that he has ever said was that he was a civilian contractor employed by the Defense Department. He never claimed to be a Soldier. I've looked high and low for when he supposedly alleged that. No such thing.
Another bell was the seemingly deliberate disregard for Turner's in-depth federal background investigation. That had to be completed favorably to grant the kind of high-level security clearance required for Turner to help protect American lives in Iraq. That kind of clearance means they've turned over just about every page in the book of your life. That's a screen that not much slips through. One specific category of intricate scrutiny is financial irregularity. If investigators saw fit to grant the clearance, that's powerful testimony that Turner stood up to and passed that test. Anyone who ever underwent the top secret clearance process knows exactly how true that is.
The loudest bells rang from dj vu front-page allegations that seemed only and deliberately timed to damage. They were so deep and credible, too. "So-and-so said" and "our own investigation found." When the article was over, it read like water cooler venom spat and spewed just in time to save us all from voting without benefit of the stereophonic sounds of sour grapes innuendo and something tantamount to character assassination.
I flashed back to the front-pages back during the primaries. Remember that whole coroner thing? Oh yeah! But, disregard the ongoing Washington State Patrol investigation of the Sheriff's Office? "Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain," said the Great and Powerful Oz.
Vote John Turner. I did.