One often overlooked fact of municipal elections is that candidates belong to national political parties. These parties pool money and influence to advance or suppress specific policies at every level of government. Our local elections are part of a complex and powerful ecosystem of political and economic power. Municipal elections, therefore, have consequences and reverberations that extend both within and beyond the borders of small towns like Old Saybrook.
Given this interconnected web, a wise vote must consider not only one’s personal, familial, and tribal affiliations, but the well-being of people beyond one’s immediate circle. “Love thy neighbor as thyself” is the cornerstone of all wisdom because human beings are interdependent. In fact, the wisdom extends even further: “Love your enemies.” If we allow our societal ecosystems to break down for some people—whether in terms of fair play, climate change, clean air and water, equal rights, due process, democratic norms, economic opportunity, health, or education—all of us pay the price. No wall is high enough to insulate the individual from government dysfunction and societal collapse. Even people on yachts need clean air to breathe, clean water to drink, wholesome food to eat, and doctors and medicine when they or their loved ones are sick. If we care about ourselves, we must find ways to care about everyone. We must also care about and rehabilitate our planetary ecosystem, the source of life itself.
In light of these insights, this November I will vote for Democratic candidates only. Although imperfect, the Democratic Party as a whole pursues fact-based solutions that expand the middle class, protect individual rights, and safeguard our shared life support systems. Support for the Democratic Party on Election Day will lead to a brighter future for us all.
Old Saybrook, CT