Here We Go Again

I tried, really I did. I tried to be quiet and stay away from politics. But I just don’t know if I can any longer. It’s all coming back to me, the bickering, the in-fighting, the accusations and the name calling. I can’t sit back and not say at least something.

Now there are some who may remember me from my days being involved in the Tea Party movement when I may have been a little radical. I will admit I have mellowed regarding many of my views, realizing that sowing seeds of discontent will not accomplish anything. Whichever side of the political fence one sits doesn’t matter, on the national level, and even at the state level, both sides will sell out when they get the chance. They are all in it for the same reasons, power, power and more power. They will do whatever they need to do to get elected and reelected. They will promise anything and deliver nothing. That is painfully clear from the last three national elections. But that is enough about national politics.

“All politics is local.” I believe Tip O’Neil is credited with that phrase. And this is true. The only real change is the change that comes from the local level. I believed that back in my Tea Party days and I still believe it now. If the last 9 years hasn’t proven that you can not make real change at the national level, nothing will. The change begins at the lowest level there is; the local level, right here at your doorstep, right here at your local polls, in your local government. But real change won’t come from just the polls, it will also come after the elections when all the signs and campaign slogans are put away. It comes from working with those who have been elected, whether you voted for them or not, to get things done.

I used to consider myself a Republican, but the Republican party has sold me out. As I mentioned above, both major parties have been corrupted by power and special interests. I now call myself a middle of the road independent conservative. I still believe in fiscal responsibility, the United States Constitution, and my Catholic values. But I also appreciate other people’s views and have come to understand that the only way to make any kind of progress is to respect each other and work together.

There is nothing that bothers me more (and I admit I may have done the same thing in the past) than reading the comments in the newspaper or on Facebook, or any other public forum that are full of personal attacks. I saw several this morning in an article in the Telegram about the leasing of the old high school by a local church whose pastor happens to be the Chairman of the Town Council. From everything I read, and yes, I understand that there could be more to the story than what I am reading, there is nothing wrong with this. The church is paying rent, the same rate as others, it is NOT a separation of church and state issue (don’t make me go Tea Party on you) and it is contributing to the upkeep of a town-owned building. Unlike the other large, empty former school building the town owns, at least the town is getting something from this one.

It appears that the contract is on the level with no “special” deals being made and at least according to the Telegram article:

Asked about the concerns, Rev. Carrasco said neither he nor his wife Rebekah, another pastor at the church, was involved in negotiations with the district for renting the school building.

“We had three other pastors and a leadership body, an administrative team, that handle that aspect of that lease,” he said.

As far as somehow this influencing his support of the state takeover of the school system, perhaps one should look at other town councils and school committees to find out how the schools got into the trouble they are in. I am sure it started long before Rev. Carrasco’s time on the Council. Any rational thinker knows that the Southbridge School system has failed and needs all the help it can get.

Once again I can see upcoming Council meetings digressing into name calling, and fist shaking and nothing getting done. There are certainly more important issues in town that need to be addressed besides the $400 a week rent paid by the church. How about our failing schools? How about our Fire Department building that was antiquated and too small 30 years ago, never mind now? How about the problem of the Landfill and what we will do with it no matter what the outcome on Question 1 is?

It is time the people of the town stop the petty BS and work together to make the town even better than it is now. Instead of complaining do something constructive. Educate yourself on the real issues, learn what you can do to help and by all means get out and vote.

Please feel free to comment. All comments are welcome but will be moderated and no offensive language, personal attacks or irrational statements will be permitted. I welcome the free exchange of rational thought and conversations

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