As the weeks go past in route to May’s primary election, I’m providing periodic candidate statements of substance, mostly unretouched, as lifted from social media and news reports. Familiar gems such as “yard signs win elections, not people” and “donate to my campaign first, and maybe I’ll have something of merit to say much, much later” will be omitted. That’s because it is my aim to determine whether our declared candidates have anything to say at all, and I’ll quote all candidates, from any and all parties, whether or not they’re in a contested race. Just promising change and new ideas without divulging them won’t cut the mustard, aspirants.
Hannegan Roseberry (D, at-large council) and Al Knable (R, at-large council) continue to buck the close-lipped traditions of their respective parties by speaking and writing openly about the real world. Hannegan leads off with two postings at her Facebook campaign page.
I feel we have a real problem on our hands when our elected officials refuse to give simple yes or no answers to questions. When you are an elected official and you refuse to give your thoughts on a subject, then I politely suggest that you hang up your hat. Whether it be something as obvious as Two-Way Streets in a city like New Albany, or something as colossal (and sinister) as RFRA, you have an obligation to be transparent on your stance. You were elected by the people (granted, a very small amount of the people of Indiana, see my earlier posts about voter apathy in the Hoosier state), and you owe them transparency. This doesn’t mean that your opinions can, or even should, please everyone at all times. I think that is another tricky corner that too many elected officials get themselves into, trying to please everyone at all times by committing to nothing and towing every line “just in case.” Be bold, be educated, and stand strongly for the things you believe in.
And, on women in local politics.
Where are the women candidates? In our upcoming city primary elections, there are a mere five female candidates out of 28, and only two of those women are challengers (myself included). Last time I checked, one out of every two human beings are female – why are we not stepping up to the plate to lead at that same level?
Al enthusiastically riffs on an idea previously discussed by Hannegan.
I won’t pretend that encouraging a civic theater in New Albany is my idea. Hannegan Roseberry discussed it on her page a few days ago. Randy Smith proposed the Baptist Tabernacle site as a possible location with me several weeks ago. The thought’s been kicked around for years. In fact, I remember Jim Anderson’s wife, Mary, advocating this 40 years ago. But heck, I can recognize a great idea!
A civic theater would be yet one more draw to downtown and everyone knows when the show lets out people love to eat or hit their favorite night spot.
The old Tabernacle building might prove multi-functional. When not in use for shows it could easily serve as a site for other public forums.
As NA doesn’t have unlimited funds, and as there are numerous pressing needs, I see this as a project facilitated rather than fully funded by the city. Even so, this is definitely a cause I’d support, allowing others (Mrs. R?) to champion.
(OMG — candidates from opposite parties, agreeing on social media as to the virtues of an idea? I don’t know about Al’s arbiters, but Hannegan can expect an unannounced visit from Warren “I used to be mayor, pal” Nash’s “purity of absolute silence” department)
Over in the 6th district, Democratic council hopeful Dr. Cliff Staten sensibly asks, “What will New Albany do to attract and keep younger generations here?”
Elections are about the future. Think about New Albany 5 years from now… now picture it 10 years from now… how about 20? How do you picture New Albany in the future? How would you like to picture New Albany in the future?
To me, the future starts with our young people; it starts with our children and our grandchildren. How do we picture their New Albany?
Meanwhile in the 5th district, Tonye Rutherford is back with a Facebook campaign page. He has an opponent in the Republican primary (Danita Burks), as does the incumbent Diane Benedetti (Dustin Collins).
This is Tonye Rutherford, I am running for City Council in the 5th District. After narrowly losing by 21 votes in 2011, I have been busy … I have since been appointed to the New Albany Floyd County Library board where I serve as the president, I was appointed to the New Albany Human Rights Commission and serve as the Chairman, I was appointed to the Floyd County Corrections board and elected to the Emmaus board.
Have you spotted substance omitted here? Let me know. The primary’s only five weeks away.