Nowhere to hide for Stockton’s Silva


Mayor Anthony Silva (R) of Stockton, Calif., has had one interesting run as mayor.

Pending the results of the upcoming November election, that run has the potential to continue.

Anyone privy to Valley politics is aware of Silva’s tenuous term as mayor. Perhaps none more so than Stockton Record columnist Michael Fitzgerald.

Silva’s bad rap has only been brought on by Silva himself. He has a laundry list of boneheaded decisions and proposals to his name.

What’s on that list, you ask? Bear in mind that this is an abridged version…

There’s the time he walked around town putting up campaign posters. At 2 a.m., In his bathrobe…

At a city council meeting, he declared himself Stockton’s first black mayor. Silva is Hispanic.

He proposed a vision he called “Stockton Proud” that would bring in cruise ships, mini golf, “fun rides,” and a space needle to Stockton’s port. It’s not as if Stockton was the largest American city to declare bankruptcy before Detroit.

When Carrie Underwood came to Stockton and had the misfortune of performing on the night of a city council meeting, Silva moved his agenda to the beginning of the meeting, declared a 10-minute break after some time and skipped the rest of the meeting to attend the concert.

After partying one night, he got into a drunk fight in his limo with a friend after a dispute about his wife.

Then there’s his Aug. 4 arrest while at his Mayor’s Youth Camp in Silver Lake, Calif., for providing alcohol to minors, playing strip poker with nude teenagers and recording conversations during last summer’s camp.

At every turn, Fitzgerald has been there to call the mayor on his bull. Or his weirdness. Sometimes it overlaps.

Fitzgerald’s responses have made an impression on me.

There’s something that tickles me in the right spot when I read one of his intelligently written articles or comments on Silva’s latest inane exploit. It must be the juxtaposition of idiocy and brains.

Such as what Fitzgerald had to say when Silva bounced from the city council meeting to see Underwood.

“It’s ironic that Silva postured as a Public Safety candidate,” Fitzgerald said. “Because one of the votes he skipped out on was the new health plan for city employees. Exit interviews with departing police cited unsatisfactory health insurance as a prime reason for quitting. The new health plan is therefore the most important step the city can take to retaining police hires.”

He proceeded to finish Silva off.

“A mayor sincerely concerned with law enforcement would want to vote on that,” Fitzgerald said. “A mayor who knows only how to campaign and to party would not.”

I had a good chuckle when reading about what Fitzgerald thought of Silva’s “half-baked” homeless plan.

Sometimes all Fitzgerald needs is a few words to get his point across. 

I love Fitzgerald’s reporting. He doesn’t let Silva off the hook for anything, nor should he. Yet he’s able to do it with a comedic tone that I simply eat with a spoon.

Or maybe it’s just that juxtaposition.