Letter: Response to Cortez
As former Carbondale elected officials with a combined tenure of 24 years of serving our town on the Board of Trustees, we recognize that polarizing issues and controversies arise, especially during campaign season. While nominating petitions to seek the open mayor seat are not yet due, one candidate has taken it upon himself to make his feelings known. Regarding Ed Cortez’s recent letter to the editor:
It goes without saying that Carbondale is a unique and treasured place that is filled with residents, workers and visitors who truly care about one another and the health, safety and welfare of the community. Recent reported assaults on two women have rightfully stirred conversation and calls to action regarding safety. We are confident that the Board of Trustees will work with town staff to implement appropriate measures in response.
Our elected leaders have great responsibility to represent the entire community, do their homework, listen to their constituents and make decisions, which are sometimes very difficult. We understand the tremendous pressure that is put upon our leaders to serve Carbondale, especially when something like a woman’s safety at night is at stake. Collaboration and teamwork are paramount in order for elected officials to effectively address such an important and urgent matter. As recent members of the Board of Trustees, we can’t emphasize enough how important it is for trustees to respect and honor the differing opinions and styles of other board members and residents who come before them. Opinions can differ, but it imperative that people respect each other.
Personal attacks, vitriolic rhetoric and consciously manipulating the truth to garner political favor are not only uncalled for in our local political arena, they are out of line and demonstrate a lack of leadership. Carbondale needs a mayor who will be the leader among leaders, one who will listen, collaborate and work for the greater good of the entire community, not one who spews negativity and isolated solutions in a letter to the editor.
We understand how difficult it is for someone to step up, stick their neck out and run for office. We also know how difficult it is to do the job once elected. We respect the fact that people are interested in serving their community, we just ask that the candidates for mayor understand the responsibility of this important role and keep the campaign out of the gutter. Remember, whoever is elected will need to serve with sitting trustees. Solutions to serious issues require input from all the trustees, not just one.
We acknowledge that we don’t have all the answers, but we have worked hard to serve Carbondale in a manner that reflected the wonderful attributes of our community. We will not keep quiet when those values are threatened or when candidates choose to make personal attacks. Carbondale deserves better.
Allyn Harvey, Pam Zentmyer, Stacey Bernot
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