OPINION — With gridlocks, pettiness and grandstanding so commonplace in Washington D.C., it is no wonder that so many Americans feel disillusioned about politics. Why can’t people with differing opinions and ideologies exercise civility, put common sense ahead of party, make good faith compromises and get things done? Hurricane’s recent City Council race is an example of how politicians can and should behave.
Initially, there were thirteen candidates vying for three City Council positions. That number was reduced to six after the primary election. With so many candidates and only three openings, competition was fierce. Indeed, by a large margin, Hurricane saw more campaign signs and campaigning this year than ever before.
In the midst of it all, the candidates were surprisingly respectful and gracious to each other. For instance, while there were significant differences of opinions on various issues, I am not aware of any name-calling or personal attacks. To the best of my knowledge, in public and private, adverse views and opinions were shared with courtesy and respect, without belittling the views or character of others.
Posting and removal of campaign signs is another great example of candidate conduct. I am personally aware of numerous instances where candidates helped each other post (and repost) campaign signs. Likewise, following the election, candidates have worked together to remove campaign signs (including dreaded T-posts).
Perhaps most striking of all, all six of the city council finalists were gathered on election night – as friends – to find out the election results together. When results came in, half were undoubtedly disappointed; however, the party went on, kindness prevailed, and cards, gifts and words of encouragement were exchanged.
I congratulate Hurricane’s city council candidates for taking the high road and completing political campaigns that are worthy of emulation. Contrary to popular opinion, there is cause for hope in the political arena – at least in small-town Hurricane, Utah.
Submitted by JOSEPH PRETE, newly elected Hurricane city councilman.
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