By Mary O’KEEFE
I have been covering campaigns for a very long time. My editor asked me what I thought of this campaign and the phrase I continue to come back to is, “It’s a shame.”
I have been very involved politically all my life and have seen some really nasty attacks with the nastiest saved for the local elections. I believe the antics were brought about because the politicians were inexperienced and became very emotional during the race. The facts became exaggerated and at times completely ignored.
Then that mean spirited political practice began to bleed into the national elections with personal attacks. Accusations using distorted facts were thrown around and suddenly the truth was not as important as who could capture the biggest headline or most volatile sound bite. Several news outlets jump on the rhetoric and fuel the flame of misinformation putting aside the public they serve.
The Glendale City Council race has been one of those races that can turn people away from the polls. The voters I speak with are tired of the constant accusations from one candidate to another. As a reporter I am surprised at how much misinformation and half-truths are being shoved at the public. We at CV Weekly have tried very hard to stay along the centerline. This is never easy because our reporters have their own opinions but must stay the course. We know our readers and respect their intelligence. In our articles it is our responsibility to give our readers the facts and not taint the story so you agree with our personal opinion. Again, in a race like this it is difficult.
The one guaranteed thing that will come out in all of our writing is our knowledge of our area and the residents we serve.
The accusations, the false facts, and apparent vendetta agenda of some that are contributors to this political race are obvious. We are certain our readers can look beyond the pettiness and borderline libelous statements to see the truth.
I hope that this will fire up those who normally stay home on Election Day to get out the vote. For those who always do their civic duty and vote, I hope this doesn’t turn them off.
The only way to let your voice be heard is through your vote. At Tuesday’s city council meeting Crescenta Valley resident Sharon Weisman spoke about the barrage of accusations that had been thrown about during the campaign. Don’t let the sad angry people who are making these accusations keep all the people away from the polls, she said. “Please rise above the atmosphere here. We are better than this.”
I know we can rise above. Send a message to those who think they can control public opinion and go to the polls.