50th Ward Follies is celebrating its fourth birthday!
I started this blog on December 31, 2014, as a response to the 2015 aldermanic campaign. Follies has come full circle. We now face another election to choose the person who will lead ou ward for the next four years.
Readers have shared advice, tips, criticisms, suggestions, corrections, and disagreements large and small, often offering different points of view and personal observations or experiences, all of which I appreciate. I’ve learned a lot from you in the past four years, and expect to learn more. I try to be fair and to focus on behaviors rather than personalities. It’s difficult in a somewhat oversensitive, multicultural environment to offer opinions and observations without triggering angry, defensive, and sometimes hostile responses, especially during these times of turmoil, political cowardice, and politically-correct groupthink.
Follies raises issues that I think require attention. Readers may agree or disagree. I want to know what you think either way.
I value my readers–your support, your ideas, your feedback, and your criticisms. I truly appreciate each of you.
Follies has been viewed more than 46,000 times during these four years. I’m proud of that, because its content is so specific to our Ward. In fact, the most-viewed posts are those on 50th Ward political issues, with the highest numbers recorded in the days before the 2015 municipal election.
I am excited by the fresh opportunities that 2019 will bring, and relish the coming political combat. Fights for political power always bring out both the best and the worst in people, whether candidates, supporters, or supposedly disinterested bystanders. For me, neutrality is not an option when the stakes are as high as they are in the coming election.
The next alderman will shape the ward for years to come because of the 2021 ward redistricting and the unmet need for economic development and affordable housing. The next alderman will also help shape the City’s responses to solving the pension crisis and ending gun violence. The next alderman will work with a new mayor and must bring fresh ideas, an independent voice, and realistic perspectives to the job of governing this City. The next alderman must be an active participant in the life of this Ward and be regarded as a vital partner in City business by the next mayor and City Council colleagues.
I’m looking forward to the coming aldermanic debates. I want to hear the ideas, arguments, and political philosophies of our four aldermanic candidates as they address ward issues and offer solutions to our ward’s problems. It’s critical that we choose the best candidate rather than base our choice on the candidate’s faith, race, or ethnicity.. The stakes are too high for tribalism.
Personally, I’m glad to see 2018 end. It was a very difficult year and I’m happy to see it go.
50th Ward Follies wishes you and yours a blessed and happy 2019!