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Re: small town boards

Posted by Dinah on February 11, 2004, at 7:55:47

In reply to Re: small town boards Dr. Bob, posted by judy1 on February 10, 2004, at 18:25:03

> It pains me to see people so upset with the possibility of these changes. I truly hope they stay with their support systems they have created here, and wait to see what if any impact these changes have on them.

Judy, I can only speak for myself. But my concerns aren't for the changes there would be to me, but the changes there would be on the board. The changes that would happen if people felt they needed to retreat to their own enclave to feel safe. The changes that happen in a real community when that happens. It's a hot topic in my city, and in others as well. What happens when a city starts being walled off from itself. It's not that I feel personally involved. I don't live inside a walled community, you don't even have to be chosen to live there or receive an invite, just buy a house. Not all the houses are really expensive or out of my ability to buy. I don't live right outside a walled community, feeling unsafe and wishing that I too had an officer at the gate to keep out the riffraff. I'm not envious of those inside the walled community. Admittedly I might mind the smell of the hot dogs coming over the fence during the fenced in community block party, while I can smell them and listen to the laughter, but can only join in by phoning someone inside and having a conference call. And there might be a teensy part of me that would be *glad* that they had walled themselves off if they only wanted to associate with each other. And perhaps a determination to not invite them to our block party. But I hope I'd overcome those petty feelings.

It's true that if I did live right next to the walled community, and saw it every day, and heard them talking about how glad they were to have the walls and the security guards, I might feel a bit stung. And even if I knew these people weren't actually afraid of *me* and weren't trying to exclude themselves from *me*, I would also know that maybe some of my neighbors didn't know that, and felt hurt at the implications of walls. Not me personally. But others that I live and work with. And that would hurt *me* to know that others felt excluded or as if they were viewed as threatening. And that's where I'm coming from.

Of course I appreciate the support system, and more importantly perhaps, the friends and acquaintances I have made here.

But it's also nice to be heard and understood by the mayor. And it hurts when the mayor you always voted for, supported, and stuffed envelopes for appears to make light of your concerns and values. I've heard a lot of people say that before me, so I know I'm not alone in actually caring about Dr. Bob's actions. Most of the attrition from the people who get really involved in the boards, and who care about the board (and care about Dr. Bob too), don't come from the lack of walls. They come from what Penny and Fallsfall were discussing. From feeling that Dr. Bob didn't hear them and understand them and take their concerns seriously, even if in the end he had a different opinion and made a different choice.

I don't think Dr. Bob wants this. I don't think he wanted to lose Lar or any of the other worthwhile posters that may not have left if they had felt heard and understood and taken seriously. I don't think he wants this, but I think it's happened enough that it's something he should keep in mind.

I'm glad you've never been hurt by Dr. Bob or felt invalidated by him (psychobabble I know, but apropos). I hope you never do. But if it ever happens to you, you'll know how much it hurts. And there'll be no safe enclave *here* from that particular hurt.




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