In little more than a month, one of the most important elections ever will take place in the Virgin Islands. With the national and local economies floundering, electric bills soaring, unemployment high, crime on the rise, youth in turmoil and with no solid plan in place by the government to fix these issues, we find ourselves in deeply troubling times. The Senate race is, by far, the most important ever. Those who will be elected will face some of the most difficult decisions of their lives.
The past few legislatures have failed to see what has become reality today. The past few governors are just as guilty by not taking the initiatives needed to foresee what has now become a nightmare for our citizens. Many of the current Senators were sitting in the legislature throughout the time when something could have been done–but wasn't. Now we find ourselves faced with keeping the same old faces and arrogant personalities who have failed us over the years or brining in new blood. Yes, there are a few current Senators who might be called progressive but those individuals have had an uphill fight by having to contend with the "old school" political games. That can and must change.
Every politician talks a good game but few have the courage to stand up and be individuals. Lacking is the fortitude to make the changes needed to affect society's problems. Many lack the sense of urgency needed to make our lives richer and more fulfilling now so that our futures can be even brighter. Most politicos do not have a clue about what's really going on deep "in the trenches". They don't get out and see what the little guy has to go through everyday. Some actually think that being an elected representative is a job. We need elected and appointed officials who can see the big picture and at the same time have the humility to interact with the common man and his level. We need people in high office who care so deeply that they are willing to work for free. Where do we find such people? Or better still, how can we alter the thinking of elected officials as a way to convince them that representation is not about one's self but about truly helping society. Somewhere along the way, being an elected official involved the task of being re-elected and the pressing issues of the day got lost in that battle. Just as we cannot endure a lack of energy policy or a policy to help our youth, we cannot endure another legislature who cares more about pay raises and respect than getting us out of this fiscal mess we are in. The time to change that is on November 4.
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