In case you haven’t noticed, it’s election season. Signs are popping up in the right of way, folks are telling you what they can do for you.
Some will run on their experience, some will run on their record, and some will run on a single issue. In nearly every race, the term of the position is four years, which is a pretty good length of time.
Single-issue candidates are problematic because a four-year term — with at least 48 meetings — is a long daggum time. There are many other topics that must be considered beyond their singular passion — which, in certain areas, is appropriate.
But as a community, we are short-changed when knowledgeable, proven leaders are exchanged for those with the loudest megaphone.
The state of school board candidates put forth by the Coweta GOP are focused on very limited non-issues. We’ve discussed (ad nauseum) Critical Race theory (not taught here), sex ed, and obscene material. If these are the only issues they are passionate about and have educated themselves about, how will they decide on a budget? When textbooks come up for consideration, will they undergo additional review to meet their party standards?
How would they have pivoted during a pandemic? If we’d done it their way, (without ESPLOST) we wouldn’t have had laptop computers to send home with kids.
Budgets and spending are a particular concern of mine. With limited experience in government, I’m concerned they will make critical mistakes when it comes to funding our schools.
What happens if they are elected, and confuse the state-mandated reserve fund with a budget surplus? What happens if they don’t get their way? Will they create a scandal to take down the other elected officials, and cost the taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars?
Another difficulty with single-issue candidates are solutions, or the lack thereof.
For the last six months, they’ve been hammering the school board meetings with their perceived problems, but they never offer a solution. Will solutions magically appear once they are elected? If they really do “put children first,” why haven’t they offered any solutions over the last year or so?
My final concern with single-issue candidates is how they overcome the weakness of their platform. They do that with volume — by buying a thousand yard signs, 200 big signs and paying volunteers from out of the area to help them put out those signs.
If you have to pay people to come put out your signs, that tells me you don’t have enough friends and supporters to help you. I’ve never paid someone to put out my signs — I’ve done it myself or my friends have.
And I’ll bet you those signs remain eyesores long after the election … another sign they care more about their issues than our community.