An otherwise enjoyable Fourth of July event was marred when, after a song, one of the speakers told the crowd, "If that didn't get you excited, we don't want you as a member of our community! Don't come back!"
I disagree with that sentiment, and I am writing today to voice two ideas in response to it. First, to the speaker: I am a member of your community but you do not speak for me, so in the future please try to avoid telling people what "we" believe. Second, I don't think that whether or not a person is excited by patriotic or martial music is a good reason to tell them that they're not wanted and that they should get out of Pleasanton.
Unfortunately, something that could have been enthusiastic, though perhaps mildly inane, ("If that didn't get you excited, I don't know what would!") came out as something ugly, xenophobic and exclusive.
While I support free speech rights, I wish that those who had such thoughts would at least keep them to themselves in the future, and especially not purport to speak for the people of Pleasanton.