Last week’s election totals told the whole story. I’ve been sitting and stewing for some time about it. Why? Why on earth did so few go out to vote? In some cases, no challenger probably had a lot to do with it. But what about others?
In Leesburg, the City Council race yielded a whopping 90 votes, of with Jeff Sexton got 20. Now, Jeff was fighting an uphill battle. He’s not a native of Leesburg, and was relatively unknown. His 24 percent of the vote is actually a respectable percentage all things considered, despite what some Oxendine supporters are screaming.
Christopher Pike won against a long time fixture in city government, but how many just stayed home? There will be some doubt that Pike was actually the more popular candidate, though I think that doubt would be misguided … don’t they actually remember Arthur Williams’ last stint on the Commission?
The problem is apathy. People don’t care. And why don’t they care? Simple, it’s because the governing bodies don’t give a damn what the people think anyways. People railed against the sign ordinance. They fought and protested against the injustice of telling Bo Henry he couldn’t have that sign. So the commission threw the people a bone and started up a new sign task force … and promptly popped out a proposal that sounds suspiciously like the old one.
People expressed misgivings with the downtown efforts, and still things pushed through. No matter what was asked for, the people of this community were ignored. Plans kept clipping forward regardless of our wishes and we got good old Don Buie to keep things going. How did that work out again?
A lot of us were concerned about cameras downtown. No, we were told, it’ll make us safer. Many of us weren’t convinced, and others of us were concerned about privacy. Well, as it turns out, once again we were right and they were wrong. But does that matter? Nope.
So now, people are apathetic. Not everyone, but many are. They just don’t care, because no matter what they do, nothing’s going to change.
We had a crappy voter turnout last week, and a lot of it had to do with having had crappy leadership for so long. Perhaps that was their plan all along?
Written by Tom Knighton. Read his blog at SWGA Politics.com. A lifelong political junkie, Tom started out his adult life as a journalism major at Darton College before leaving school to serve his nation as a U.S. Navy Corpsman. Through the years, he has watched government from outside and inside. A former Reagan supporter, then later a Democrat, Tom now finds himself quite comfortable as a card carrying Libertarian and all around smart-elec.