Battered but Unbowed and Still on Course
The month of May has been an adventure for me. As someone who
lovers writing about politics, every so often, I like taking a plunge,
too. Back in 1977, when I was a young 29 year old out of Charlestown living on Winthrop Street near the Training Field, I attempted a run for the old, five-member Boston School Committee, but failed to collect enough certified signatures.
Again in 1983, I got the itch again and announced for District 1 Boston School Committee, but quickly changed courses as I was planning a 1984 wedding. Then over in Quincy, where I relocated after getting married, I took out papers for Quincy School Committee. This time I succeeded in collecting enough signatures to make the ballot. I garnished 2,232 votes in that November 1995 election. It was not enough to win, but 2,232 folks from Quincy supported me at the ballot box.
Fast forward to 2019. Just before yet another birthday on May 4, I decided once again to attempt a political run. This time, like 1977, I failed to get enough signatures, but I worked my behind off with a number of friends and relatives. I felt good about my 30-day political run, learning much and meeting many people along the way. Some wanted to debate me. Others thought I was just too old.
One voter said she was looking for more women and racial minorities to diversify government. I wanted to tell her old white guys are a minority, too. Just go to a nursing home – how many old guys do you see there?
Please don’t vote based on gender or skin color. Do it on the
issues, and don’t forget all us old guys out there who don’t want to go out to pasture just yet.
Every time you decide to do something, you give it your all and whatever happens happens. I don’t feel like a loser because I failed in the end. You only lose when you give up and do nothing. Our life is far too short to give up on a dream or goal. Maybe, I will never win a seat in the public office. Maybe, I am not meant to be an elected figure.
You know what – I can go back to my writing, which I do well. Maybe I can just continue to influence public policy. There is more to life than running for office. Mostly we should be concerned about staying active in civic affairs. Maybe we can influence public policy through our actions as citizens.
I am not going to say I will never try to run for public office again because you should never say never. I have been a candidate at 29, 35, 47 and 71 years old, and the only thing to change is finding that energy within you. I still have it, but I work harder at that today. Can I get a witness? I tried as hard as I could so I suffered no