In Friday's Roundup, we published an article about an investigation into the actions of an allegedly intoxicated Mayor Ken Murphy during rodeo weekend.
His actions were clearly inappropriate and embarrassing not only to the office of mayor, but to our community. He displayed drunken, foul-mouthed disrespect for our fire marshal, police officers, and business owners in front of dozens of local patrons and out-of-town guests.
One visitor said it was the most shocking example of disrespect and juvenile behavior she had ever witnessed in a city official. Numerous witnesses documented this same sentiment.
When initially asked about the incident and investigation, Murphy said he didn't think he did anything wrong. Frankly, it doesn't matter what the mayor thinks. Much of the public is appalled at his behavior.
Like it or not, elected officials are held to a higher standard. They are expected to set a good example and be role models. It's all but certain that Murphy understands this important truth. But when someone is under the influence of alcohol, their actions often contradict their normal behavior. We've seen this sad truth all too often, both locally and nationally.
Because of this recent situation and previous similar incidents, there are some people in town who are ready to lead the charge for a recall.
We believe it is far too soon to leap to such a negative action.
Ken Murphy has a lot to offer Payson. He loves this community and has proven through the years his desire to serve its residents. We elected him because he has done much good as a community leader and possesses the ability to solve problems and bring people together.
As our mayor, Murphy needs to set a higher standard for himself. He needs to realize that he is under the public microscope, and that he will be held accountable for his actions.
The first step might be to take some responsibility for his actions the weekend of Aug. 16.