Lately, I am reminded of the critic. I am reminded of the public servants who run for office, serve the citizens, and make decisions in the public arena. I am reminded of the truth. I am reminded of so many things lately that I simply remember this famous attribution of Theodore Roosevelt:
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”― Theodore Roosevelt
The critic would take a quote out of context and use it to fill their narrative. The critic would base their opinion on many from the actions of one. The critic fails to relate with intent, desire, passion, heart, and soul. The critic will sometimes move from critique and begin attempts to destroy reputations, spread falsehoods, and twist words to support their lofty desirous aspirations of being noticed. Fortunately, there are only a handful of these critics around that have catapulted their propaganda via social media replies. For those that are doing this, I say to you that you are noticed. You are meaningful, and you are appreciated for what you do. This is not to say that your message is, but you as a person are. This is being said in hope that you realize that you no longer need to feel as though you must destroy a person’s reputation to fulfill the positive outcome you desire. You can simply open yourself up to civil dialogue and discuss issues on their merits without harboring any personal offense. You do not have to capitulate your convictions and principles to do so. You only have to offer respect for your fellow man or woman.
The citizens of East Ridge are what make the City great. The citizens of East Ridge are why the many great employees continue putting their all in each day they come to work. The citizens of East Ridge are what keep the wheels in motion. Divisiveness can be resultant of many things. I have witnessed this election cycle bring divisiveness through offensive verbal attacks, jabs, punches, innuendos, rumor, and outright untruths. There has been enough of this and we should remember that on Wednesday of this week we will all still be living, working, commuting, shopping, and eating amongst each other in this fine City of East Ridge. My prayer is that we will be doing so with love in our hearts for one another.
The police union formed was something new to East Ridge, but nothing new to the law enforcement profession. The police officers of East Ridge bring professionalism to our City and a common goal of keeping us safe. We must remember to back our police officers. The firemen of our City share a common purpose and do equally fine work. We must do everything we can to continue to support them. The other employees of the City do outstanding work to keep the City operating and moving forward. Please remember that all these employees show up every day because they want to be here in East Ridge to do their part in making this the best City possible. To the candidates running for office, I offer my sincere respect to each one of you for your willingness to serve the citizens as stewards of the City. Thank you all for what you do and what you are willing to do.
I respectfully ask you to consider voting this Tuesday for Jim Bethune as Mayor of East Ridge.
__ Franklin Connors