Why a Write-In?

I’ve been asked on a number of occasions why I am running for the Board of Supervisors, District 4 (D4) as a write-in candidate.  It’s a tough road.  The law doesn’t make it easy for a write-in candidate to win.  A name isn’t on the ballot and voters have to ask for a list of write-in candidates at the polling place–you can’t just write anyone’s name, connect the arrow, and have it count.  It’s another one of those not for the fainthearted things.

There was a little weirdness.  I had been asked early on by a Green Party activist and community organizer if I would consider running for Supe.  I was flattered.  The idea stuck.  I did a lot of heavy soul-searching. I thought it better to spend summer with my son, as much of it as possible.  We’d gotten side-tracked a couple of previous summers and I’d promised myself that I wouldn’t get into any craziness.  Running for public office promised some of that, and a child only has one fifth summer.  A filing deadline got moved back two weeks from prior years.  I missed it and thought–Well, that’s that.  Still, the idea stuck.  Rather, it haunted me. 

Anyone who knows me knows that when I do commit to doing something, I do it.  No flaking, maybe some grumbling depending on my mood, but I do it.  A friend of mine used to talk about that attitude in terms of car batteries.  Who do you call when your car battery dies when you are in the middle of nowhere (and you don’t have AAA, and there’s no cell phone service so you have to walk or catch a ride somewhere to call)?   I get those calls.

This time, it’s our system of government calling.  This time it’s Nature calling (with a capital N, though our system of government sure looks like what happens when other euphemistic calls of nature occur).

I’ll do my part to fix some of what’s broken and to practice good stewardship of what of Nature remains .  No excuses.  I’ve had to deal with rolling eyes, disses and misses from the press, even the beginnings of a lefty firing squad.  I’m not paying some PR firm to do what I can do by looking people square in the eye and telling them what I believe in.  More often than not, I get thank you’s, because something in my expression is on common grounds.  99% of us Occupy a place where we share some common experience.  I am compelled to go there now and do my part, as I have at times in the past with lesser commitments, and as I wholeheartedly wished that I could have, but truly could not, with greater ones. 

I’m paying forward as many of us are.   I feel as if I’m in good company doing that.

h. brown asked me why I was running as a write-in candidate.  He’s worked hard to keep an eye on City Hall and deserved an answer.  This is what I wrote.

Couldn’t let another D4 election go by without drawing attention to the revolving door.  Family commitments and the fact that DOE changed the filing requirements for D4 made the decision for me.  I was encouraged to run as a write-in by a number of community activists.  So I am.  If you need more details, it’s a conversation.

I’m paying forward here…  The system’s broken.  I’m no political hack.  If I succeed as a political hacker, I’m happy.

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