Elissa Yount: Does not pass muster

And so we come to the last Wednesday before the Henderson election for mayor and council.

The name of this blog is “Home in Henderson.” The editor, Jason Feingold, agreed to let me write an article each week leading up to the election. The purpose of these articles was to bring to the forefront issues that were important to our homes in Henderson.

There is no need to rehash all the issues that are important to us. We know them. Some of us have more pressing issues than others, some prioritize these issues differently, and some are more hopeful than others that things will change around here. If you listened to the Rev. Fauntroy this week, he said that for Henderson to be healthy and have good quality of living, all of us need a steady income, an education, affordable health care, good shelter, and justice.

One of the things wrong in Henderson, and one of the things that this election could fix, is that those of us who have a steady income, who have an education, who can afford health care, who own homes, and know how to receive justice, need to get to work — not to get us more of what we already have — but to help those who do lack some of these qualities in their life.

In the last election, people in the board room at the bank, on the golf course, and at dinner at the country club — all of whom have plenty — politicked and gave lots of money to keep what they had and to get more, rather than working to bring equity to Henderson.

And in this election, the people at the Caucus meetings worked to keep the status quo. They did not bring a vision, a platform, or an idea about improving Henderson. They, too, have their income, their education, their health care, their homes, and their justice. So, rather than present a platform that would help others achieve an equality of living, they just looked at race as a qualification for office. I have news for the Black Caucus and the Black Municipal Caucus: it will not matter how diverse our city government is if they cannot get the job done. If diversity is the only goal, diversity will be the only result.

People sometimes look at me as if I am crazy when I tell them we have got to fix our blighted neighborhoods. They wonder, what is it to me? What am I getting out of it? What do I stand to gain? Some literally cannot comprehend that I bother with this when I do not stand to turn a buck from it.

I bother, and you should bother too. It is way past time for Henderson to stop ignoring those who, for whatever reasons, have little or no quality to their lives. They are our neighbors and we should want them for our friends rather than giving them cause to be our enemies.

In this election, if you are lucky enough to have a steady income, an education, good health care, a comfortable home, and justice, vote for people who will work to give others the same chance to have these qualities in their lives. I do not mean for a second that we should give hand-outs. I mean that we should have hand-up programs. It will not take anything away from you to do this. It will just make it better for us all.

Vote for people who you know have a clean heart, who have a work ethic, who will bring equity to Henderson. Vote for people who will work to do good for us all, not for their own glorification, praise and attention. Vote for people with the intelligence to fix our problems rather than quibble about them. Vote for people who know what part the city plays in getting jobs here instead of moaning about the loss of industry. Vote for people who will stop the growth of poverty rather than profit from it. Vote for people who will insist on a healthy and safe city rather than condemning those who work for this goal. Vote for people who will use their creativity to bring solutions to our failing city rather than sitting on their haunches and waiting to be told what to do.

It is your chance to vote for the correct direction for our city. This “new direction” of the past two years was the wrong direction.

It just did not pass muster.