To the editor:
This year the local off-year election is probably the most important one the voters have faced in the last 60 years. The people chosen to serve on the city council will determine the direction the city will go for the next 60 years.
Unfortunately, off-year elections traditionally have the lowest voter turnout of any elections. This means that the side with the most “true believers,” the side with the most voters who are motivated to vote will win even though they may not represent the wishes of the majority of the citizens of Laurinburg.
Laurinburg and Scotland County also have their own tradition that sometimes works for ill and sometimes for good: they tend to vote for any candidate whose position is “Throw the Bums Out.” Single-issue candidates are often elected and the downside is once they have “thrown the bums out” they have no idea what to do for the balance of the four years in their term. The end result is we end up with absolutely no progress in any direction.
That is compounded when the campaign degenerates into personal attacks on the character and morality of the candidates with little to no attention paid to what they intend to do. We have certainly seen an election in the city that has degenerated into “Don’t vote for these people because Dr. Block supports them and Dr. Block is a fiscally irresponsible person who is also a really evil man” on the one side and “Don’t vote for them because one of the members of the council wears sleeveless tops which are clearly inappropriate for their age.”
I would submit that neither side is using tactics that represent policy reasons for serving on the city council.
When you step back and look at the positions of both sides in this election you have to admit that each has very good ideas about making the city grow. The problem is each side presents their arguments in such a bombastic manner that the issues pale in comparison to the problems and issues of Laurinburg.
Please vote in this election. It is most likely the most important municipal election you will ever have the opportunity to vote in. But please don’t vote based on which side did the best job of trashing the opposition, vote for the direction in which you want the city to move.
Your vote could make all the difference.