Santa Clara County Exposed was originally created to expose the corruption, abuse, and bulling that Evan Dowling, a government whistleblower, and his family have suffered for years at the hands of Santa Clara County Executive Management with the protection of Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors, the Office of the County Executive, Labor Relations and County Counsel for reporting and denouncing abuse of power, bullying of his coworkers, and the misuse of our tax dollars.
After years of Santa Clara County's government and elected officials ignoring the evidence and protecting bullies at the expense of Santa Clara County taxpayers and to the detriment of the public welfare, Mr. Dowling's wife, Maria Hernandez became frustrated by the lack of response and condonement on the part of the County Board of Supervisors and other County officials. Maria's beloved mother's accelerated death due to all the stress of seeing her husband's struggles at work was the last straw that led to the creation and publication of Santa Clara County Exposed.org, also known as SCCExposed, on November 2016.
When Maria created SCCExposed, she did it just to vent all the frustration and disappointment she experienced at the hands of a system she thought it was fair and law-abiding. But Maria got more than what she bargained for.
Within days of her publishing SCCExposed Maria had strangers calling, emailing her, and even some knocking on her door to tell her that her experience is not unique or new. Soon Maria realized that what has happened to her husband and her family is just the tip of the iceberg of a much larger problem in Santa Clara County's government. Ageism, bullying, abuse of power, silencing dissent, and all sorts of corruption are more ubiquitous than what Maria knew and most of Santa Clara County residents know.
Learning about the abuses others have suffered at the hands of a fake progressive County was a crude awakening and a disturbing reality.
It was then when Maria wished she had not published SCCExposed. It is overwhelming, truly overwhelming and demoralizing knowing the truth. Maria felt she should have dealt with her situation as most of the people affected by this system do: silently, losing themselves into oblivion and the daily routine of life, and live with it until her husband either retires, gets fired from the County, or dies due to the never ending stress, abuse and bullying he suffers every day at work. This way at least Maria would be carrying only the knowledge of their own problems. However, the overwhelming feeling of knowing that others and their loved ones are going through much the same thing she and her husband have endured, and sometimes even worse abuse, was more than Maria could bear in silence.
Maria spent many nights up crying and pondering how could this happen in supposedly such progressive County. She was very upset knowing that many others were suffering what her husband and family have gone through. Maria thought about her mother and how much her mother cried, suffered and prayed that justice were given to Maria's husband. Maria's mother's unflinching faith was with her until the moment she died an accelerated cancer death due to the stress and anguish of seeing how her husband has been bullied for years due to his being a government whistleblower, a mandated reporter and standing up for his rights and the rights of his coworkers.
If you have ever loved, you may be able to understand the excruciating pain of seeing the ones you love suffering and dying to injustice and neglect.
During the following year Maria was carrying in her conscience the knowledge of those abuses that largely go unnoticed by the public as most of the victims are too afraid to go public, and those who have dared to do so are in most cases silenced by the system and in the case of government workers they get terminated or bullied into retirement.
It became increasingly difficult to continue life as usual. Just the thought of knowing that someone else's mother, father, husband, or loved one is suffering as Maria and her family have, became so overwhelming that Maria felt she had to do something that would hopefully help others to avoid being in her situation.
For the next couple of months Maria pondered over what should she do beyond writing letters to the County Board of Supervisors detailing corruption and abuse, presenting evidence to them, and speaking at public comment during the County's public board meetings just like many others before her have done it during many years until they grow up tired of being ignored by those they voted into office. After all little or nothing has been done to stop this problem and clean the system.
While Maria had told Don Rocha and other few people back in late November that she would run for County Board of Supervisor, the truth is that Maria was still very uncertain about actually doing it. But in late February she had an epiphany: that if change is going to happen, it will happen at the elected official's level. The County Supervisors have the power to demand accountability from the County Executive's office and thus keep accountability trickling down, which for more than a decade has not yet happened.
So, while Maria would have never consider running for office for her own personal benefit, she decided to do it for the benefit of others. Desmond Tutu once said: "If you see injustice and remain silent, you have chosen the side of the oppressor." Maria had been silent during years about what has happened to her family, but in good conscience she could not remain silent after all what she had learned about what other innocent people are going through.
Maria was never under the illusion that she would stand a chance, given her lack of political connections, associations, and monetary resources. SCCExposed does not factor experience into this equation, for given the reality of how many many of Santa Clara County residents and County workers live, there is so much that can be said about the relevance of electing politically experienced candidates with impressive resumes. But being a candidate would at least put Maria in the same space with the other candidates, and she would have an audience beyond the usual suspects, so that others would know about the dark side of fake progressive establishment politics. And hopefully through her exposing the truth something can be done to bring about change.
The Political Candidate
So, on February 27, 2018, a just a couple of days before the deadline to register as a candidate, and three months before the primary election, against her husband's wishes and the concerns of family and friends, Maria filed candidate paperwork for Santa Clara County Supervisor in District 4.
Maria knew what she was getting into, but she did not care. She still does not care, for the need of justice is larger than the mocking, laughing, and scorn Maria endured at the hands of the local news media, some of the candidates and their supporters during her short time as a candidate.
Those who go against the establishment endure the same fierce opposition, bullying and scorn. In any case, describing Maria's short lived experienced as candidate is not what this site is about. Perhaps in the future Maria will write about her brief political experience, and the hypocrisy and double standard of the political system, the dying of grassroots politics, the cynical identity politics game, and the manipulative ways that the news media reports personal opinions as facts. But before we move on, let's to close this section by expressing Maria's gratitude to those who supported her and shared her message with their networks. Throughout this experience Maria got to know many wonderful and amazing people who are in for the fight for justice and a real change in Santa Clara County's corrupt establishment power politics that have dominated for so long.
After the primary election ended Maria was contacted by the top three candidates moving into the general election. Each one of them asked her for her humble endorsement. Maria personally likes each one of them, and under different circumstances she would not have any reservation endorsing any of them, but given the complicated nature of things Maria could not do it, for in all honesty, none of them would have benefited from the endorsement of an unknown, unconventional, anti-establishment, and outspoken candidate who is speaking out against the establishment politicians who endorsed these candidates. However, Maria informed each of these candidates about the chronic problems and injustices happening in the County of Santa Clara and wrote to them that if they truly care about change they should look into this epidemic and be leaders in bringing a solution. That would speak louder than any endorsement Maria could give to anyone.
Being a public figure for such a short time came with more responsibilities than Maria already had, but it also provided Maria with a new voice and determination to continue the fight for justice. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. famously said: "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter." Through the history of this great nation many men and women have died so that we have a voice. SCCExposed in its own way is honoring their brave selfless sacrifice by speaking for those who have been silenced or are too afraid to speak for themselves.
SCCExposed was created out of necessity and as a last resort to achieve justice and seek reform and enforcement of the law through the court of public opinion, after all legal channels, authority and and institutions in Santa Clara County failed to do so.
The new chapter and mission for SCCExposed is to bring to light the dark side of Santa Clara County's politics, currently veiled under a fake progressive image. Taxpayers have the right to know how their tax dollars are being used to bully its citizens and government employees, to intimidate and silence dissenters who speak truth to those in power who do no want to hear the truth or let it be known.
SCCExposed.org whole heartily believes that those who speak the truth should be free from fear of retaliation and the punishing hand of those they voted into office and the government that is supposed to serve them.
In this newly renovated and updated SCCExposed website citizens will find the truth about their government and the agencies that are supposed to protect and serve them, relevant information about the use of our tax dollars, videos and other materials that demonstrate years of government neglect to the problems facing our County and its people. Citizens will learn of ways to support SCCExposed and its mission. And most important of all, this website provides a safe space and a voice for other government whistleblowers and those who have experienced retaliation, bullying, abuse of power by our County government.
Given the fear that exists among many people who have come to the SCCExposed founder, regarding the abuses and bullying they have suffered at the hands of some of the County's Executive Managers, in this new SCCExposed website Maria has started a personal blog about the bullying her husband has suffered and still gets every day at work. She has done this so that others in like circumstances can realize that they are not alone and so that the public can get a first hand account of what good, honest, hardworking, law-abiding individuals endure at the hands of the County's corrupt Executive Management for exposing government corruption, all of this with the blessing of our current elected officials and at the expense of County taxpayers.
Bullies, abuse, authoritarianism, and chronic, corrupt, and incompetent systems will thrive and prevail as long as we the people remain silent. The system is self-protective, so change must happen from the outside. It is time for the people to be heard. It is time for change.
Long live justice, liberty, freedom of speech and the Constitution of the United States of America.