1/30/2022 15:30

County Board Part 2

The other challenger for the post of county supervisor identifies his personal nostalgia as "the most important issue facing" the county. Actually he lists 3 issues as the most important; on the plus side, he points to the problem of jailing people who actually are in need of mental health treatment.

"I want the county to be like the old days," he told the local paper, "when I moved here and settled down and bought a house. Neighbors hung out with each other, were friendly and barbeques, invited neighbors to graduation and christening of their children, block parties, safe, secure communities." (The paper in its published version helpfully supplied a number of missing words such as "had", "held", "and it was".)

I remember about 30 years ago some of my neighbors commented about how the neighbors were closer 25 year before that. But my neighbors understood what had changed over the years. Their children had grown up and most of the people living on my block were old folks. How many christenings and graduations happen without growing kids?

I wanted to ask him, Have you signed up to be a foster parent? Have you joined with your neighbors to make houses being vacated by empty nesters available to young families on affordable terms? Are you working to welcome immigrant families to our district? Those are the ways to get children and children are the way to regain the kind of cohesiveness you knew 25 years ago.

Of course, more children is not the only possible way to knit a neighborhood together. Older people could choose to invite their neighbors to backyard cookouts even without kids. Older people could choose to set up a neighborhood cornhole tournament or a winter book group or bird watching walks. If they wanted to. Sitting through meetings of the county board won't accomplish any of those things.

On the plus side, if he is elected he could help improve mental health services.