I’ll admit that at first I was an eye-roller regarding the Montclair Council elections. I thought, “Really, folks? What difference does it make?” I figured that the obvious disparity in the majority of the people who live in Montclair and the type of person who is able to run for and be on council without destroying her/his pocketbook was so great that the same basic council got elected year after year. Being totally truthful, I just assumed that most people who were willing to put up with the nastiness and time consuming meetings and committees had ulterior motivations – as in investment or other monetary opportunities – for wanting to be on the council.
Cynical? Me? Always. But hopeful, too.
As election season continued on, I thought about a major concrete power – appointing Board of Education members – that the Mayor of Montclair gets to have. Hmm. Then I thought about all the smaller-scale decisions that are made about streets and parks and construction and Pre-Ks and libraries. Double hmm. And that’s why I’m putting some thought into my voting decision on May 8th of 2012. It’s not that I think it makes all the difference in the world. But if I don’t vote thoughtfully, in my mind, I give up my right to complain righteously.
So, I’ve read up on For Montclair, Montclair2012, Real Progress Montclair, and the independent candidates. And while I prefer to keep my voting choices to myself (even from my husband!), I will tell you that no one slate will collect all of my gold this time around. And I hope that most of my fellow residents will choose to spread their votes around as well.