Monday, September 18, 2006

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Allie:A REALLY LONG POST BY ALLIE (they won't all be so long I promise)

I had a friend tell me once that Davis County is a vortex. People who are born here never leave.

I can understand why. Davis County is a wonderful place to live. I grew up in Centerville and have only lived in other places during the time I was at Utah State and the less-than-one-year I spent in Idaho Falls while my husband finished up at Ricks (BYU-I, whatever, it was Ricks then).

This is my home, and I have a sincere interest in preserving the quality of life I have had here. Since today is election day, I’ll remind all of Tyler’s readers to vote. If you don’t vote you don’t get to complain if you aren’t feeling represented.

Representation is often a problem for me.

I’m a democrat. We’re rare creatures in this part of the world. Stare all you’d like, I’m used to it. I promise I don’t bite. It’s not like I’m a super-liberal-crazy-democrat (just wait until I talk about labels later). I’m really a normal, rational person, so it frustrates me there are often so few who admit to sharing my views. So few, in fact that often times the officials I elect to represent me, don’t. I can’t fault them (most of the time), they are busy representing the majority (no one has figured out yet that the world would be a better place if everyone listened to me).

(Here’s where I talk about labels) If you didn’t know I was a democrat would you be more likely to listen to what I had to say? Would you dismiss my words and say I'm one of those-crazy-democrats? (If you do it’s okay, we can all change. I regularly have to remind myself that republicans are not evil :) ) Last year during the election my husband and I had long talks with his brother. His brother was concerned that our “politics” were leading us astray. We assured him that our faith in our religion was secure. We also found this great article by Kathleen Gurr This brother is a good man, so where did he get the crazy idea that you can’t be a democrat and be religious? His parents certainly never taught that. I don’t think most parents purposely teach it. It just seems to be something that kids pick up from "unintentional teaching".

The wonderful thing about a democracy is that we don’t have to all agree, we can even disagree with enthusiasm, but we can still respect each other’s ideas and beliefs. Even when the issues are divisive, we have the power to choose whether we will be divided or not. There are two examples that come to mind…

First, Walmart in Centerville. There are many who are very upset and feel like their city leaders put greed above the desires of the people. Perhaps, but is it really worth hating over? Is it disappointing? Of course. Is it the end of the world, not quite. Life will go on and people will adapt (although hopefully not to the point of actually shopping there).

Second, the possible North Salt Lake name change. Would I be disappointed if it were to happen, yes. I think it is a waste of money. I have heard people call certain members of our city council unkind names. I have heard many people talk “us against them”, (them being the people who live up on the hill). Why do we need to be divisive? When can we figure out that it’s okay to disagree, and it is possible to do it without hating people or labeling them in a way that diminishes what they have to say so that we don’t have to feel threatened.

So we have a couple of choices, we can sit back and do nothing and be acted upon. If that is our choice, we have forfeited our right to complain (as far as complaining is a “right”) about it later. We can also get involved and try to bring about our desired result. In the case of walmart, my desired result has not occurred, although construction has been postponed. I am disappointed, but life goes on and it’s not worth being miserable over because then I would be miserable all of the time, and where’s the good in that? In the case of the NSL name change, it is not too late to get involved. As far as I can tell, the name change is not on the agenda for tonight’s City Council meeting, Natalie can correct me if I am wrong.

We as citizens of this great country have the opportunity to vote (unless you are a democrat at a republican primary of course) and to be involved. When we sit back and do nothing, we give our power over to people who may or may not act in our best interest.

Enough Rambling, Go vote.

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