EDWARD D. JOHNSON
ATTORNEY AT LAW
5040 OCEANVIEW BOULEVARD
LA CANADA, CALIFORNIA 91011
July 20, 2011
Emily Teeter, President
ARCE Board of Governors
American Research Center in Egypt
8700 Crownhill Blvd.
San Antonio, Texas 78209
Re: ARCE Membership
I am in receipt of your letter of June 13, 2011, wherein you advised me I have been "removed" from membership in ARCE for "conduct deemed by the Board of Governors to be prejudicial to the best interests of ARCE", effective June 3, 2011.
This is the most cowardly and feckless action ARCE could possibly take with respect to the questions and issues I and other members have raised about the conduct and policies of ARCE and which have been posted on the arcecomplaints.com website. Rather than attempt to address, in any way, what are serious issues and questions, which deserve serious attention and answers, the Board has simply chosen to expel me in retaliation for having raised them, for having provided a forum for Members to learn about what ARCE actually does and allow them to voice their legitimate questions and concerns about the organization.
No one is fooled by this. I have been expelled from ARCE not for conduct which the Board deems prejudicial to ARCE, itself, but for conduct which the Board and Present Management find embarrassing and prejudicial to their own interests. This underlines that ARCE is run by and for a small clique of people whose real interests lie in maintaining control over it at any cost and to the exclusion of everyone else, not in running it well, or in the interests of the other Members. The Board’s action and refusal to respond in any way to Members concerns raised in the website demonstrates its utter contempt for them.
ARCE Members will see this action for what it is, a threat that any questions, objections, or dissent entail the risk of retaliation and ejectment.
The Board now governs not with the consent of the governed, but by virtue of terror.
The Board’s action is based on fear; fear that it will be held accountable in any way for its actions. Rather than address any Members questions and issues, engage in free and robust debate, to be in any way accountable, or allow me to run for the Board when I have publicly stated I will do so on the basis of holding the Board accountable to Members, it is expedient to simply ignore Member’s concerns and expel me, to prevent the risk of my collecting proxies and challenging the Board in open and free elections.
What Members of ARCE do now is up to them. Either they knuckle under to the Board’s coercion because they are too timid to protest, which is clearly the Board’s hope, or oppose it and force debate and change. If they do so, you cannot expel them all. They will have to exhibit some organization and courage by doing so, but if enough protest and object, they can force change.
But the lack of accountability raises the issue that ARCE will likewise refuse to be accountable to individuals and organizations that support it financially, whether they be private individuals, institutions, or governmental agencies. Any organization that refuses to be accountable does so because it cannot afford to have its actions see the light of day. It loudly conveys the message that it is wasteful, inefficient, unprofessional and engages in rank political cronyism, detrimental to the organization and its supporters. Past, present and potential future supporters of ARCE will be fully justified in drawing exactly that inference. Any potential donor should now think twice about that accountability before making or continuing support in any way. I will now call their attention to that issue in the arcecomplaints.com website and every way I can.
Very truly yours,
Edward D. Johnson