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JOE JANIS, San Clemente

A few weeks ago, I attended a candidates’ debate and found the goals of the candidates are quite similar. All candidates will fight against the toll road, public safety is their primary concern, and all agreed we need a solution to our homeless situation.

After the debate, I met the candidates and found them to be very cordial. I could say nice things about them all, but in today’s society, I guess we don’t do that kind of stuff anymore.

Some groups have been relentless on the frontrunners. Anything a frontrunner has said or done, or alleged to have said or done, has been made public with vengeance, over and over again.

People attend council meetings to publicly criticize candidates. PowerPoint presentations are used to really show some dirt. The social media has been the best venue to assassinate a candidate’s character.

Don’t forget those negative ads and mailers. I am wondering, do we need to do all this? After all, this is an important election, isn’t it? The elected candidate will serve for one whole year. 

None of the candidates deserves this kind of treatment. Wanting to serve our community for a few hundred bucks a month is commendable in itself. If you run for office and become a frontrunner, you will be the target of one group or the other.

Our local political arena has become a pigpen. No matter how clean you may be, once you enter the pen, you will get very dirty. 

Elections seem to bring out anger and rage and a lot of anxiety in the community. A community is only as nice as the people who live in it.

During election time, our little town doesn’t seem so nice. Next year, two council positions will be up for election. Once again, we will have an opportunity to cause some real hurt to the candidates and to their families.

Maybe next election, we can try something different. We can treat all candidates with dignity and respect, thank them for wanting to serve and just get out and vote for the candidate of your choice.

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