11 weeks

Coming to terms that I need to be doing campaign stuff every day, though Trevor recommended keeping a day of rest and that seems like good advice. I don’t want to feel pressured by expectations of what a candidate ought to do. I feel like what makes me a good candidate is who I am as a person so changing that more then is necessary seems foolish.  The transition music on Christian television is ear shattering. Reminds to surf the other 3 channels and see what’s on. Caught some great Bob Newhart show earlier, it was a nice change from campaign filing requirements. Seems relatively straightforward. I have a lead on an experienced treasurer who has done some campaigns. Also have a lead on someone to handle media stuff and I have a draft of some literature I’m thinking about:

My name is Michael Trapp and I am asking you to join your neighbors in making Columbia’s Ward 2 and Columbia a safer, more vibrant community by electing me to City Council. As your city council representative I will advocate for Livable Streets, Good Governance, and a Future Focus to create a city that is a better place for our children and their children after. As someone who lives and works in Columbia’s Second Ward I am passionate to make our neighborhoods stronger. As a substance abuse counselor at Phoenix Programs, and a former case manager at Columbia’s domestic violence shelter I have insight into the lives of struggling people. If we create city services that are accessible and meaningful for the least amongst us we will have a city that works for all of us.

Livable Streets. With livable streets comes a greater opportunity for outside activity. This  puts more eyes on the street and contributes to public safety and neighborliness. We all benefit from safe sidewalks. Those with modest means need good sidewalks and bicycle paths even more.  Sidewalks improve traffic safety by moving pedestrians off busy roads. Bicycle routes and paths tell drivers and riders where to be on the street for smooth traffic flow.  Livable streets promote a culture of snow and ice removal. They foster cultural opportunities and neighborhood events to decrease isolation. I support greater use of school crossing guards to monitor on-street parking regulations thus ensuring safety near our schools.

Good Governance: I bring common sense decision-making in the best interest of the City and the ward. I am a good istener so Second Ward voters can expect excellent constituent service. Maintaining fiscal responsibility and solid reserves. Passing laws in a deliberate and proactive manner. Avoiding costly boondoggles like Garagezilla.

Future Focus: We will be judged by the city we pass on to our children. Measures of our success will be how we considered future constraints as seen in our transportation planning, school and utility siting and other intensive infrastructure. Decisions should be made with a future focus and a cautious respect of the enormous power of bad decisions that look good in the short term. Protecting our community’s health and safety should always be our highest priority. Maintain what we like about Columbia but position our city to continue to grow into the future.

 

Mark your calendar for April 3.

Choose Mike Trapp for Second Ward City Council

Paid for by Corporate America. Dick Cheney, Treasurer*

*for purpose of satire only, the internet is still free

Yesterday looked over the budget. Looks complex how projects get put forward there’s a process. Only 3% of the city budget on sidewalks. Not a lot of projects in the Second Ward from a cursory glance. I was asked by the Tribune reporter about getting up to speed and I downplayed that but I know a lot of what I don’t know now and I have a much healthier respect for the learning curve. Ultimately its about applying values and people are stepping forward to help me. Which is good asking for help is not a strength. I have a healthy maybe overhealthy tendency towards self reliance.

I am thankful for unasked for support. Kahlil Gibran says, at least how I remember it “To give when asked is good, to give without being asked, out of knowledge is better”. I am a little nervous. Did get my mind off of it and walked Fido to the park. Mentioned my candidacy to one person not to another. I don’t want to campaign all the time or be on the make, even for votes. Fido got some good play with Robin and Miley which is awesome because their people are on the same schedule. Its staying light out later, that’s going to be nice. The stress of work has become a bit of a sanctuary. It is terribly engaging and demands you to be present almost all the time. Its amazing how things change with perspective.

I want to end with a story. A counselor was asked why the state spent so much money on prisons and so little on treatment in a group of struggling folk. The counselor said “The whole premise of the question is flawed. Your assuming that the state acts under reason and common sense. I have never seen any evidence of that. How things work is that older people vote more then younger people so the electorate skews old. Those folks, your grandparents, aunt, uncles, what have you are pandered too by politicians who promise to make them safe with tough talk about criminals.

They don’t mean you, your well meaning but scared relatives. They think they are these “Criminals” out there, not you who just fell in with the wrong crowd or made a couple bad decisions. Politicians don’t want to look soft on crime and they sell you out. You can’t even vote them out because we have created this permanent group of second class citizens called felons. But things are getting better. The state can no longer afford to just lock people out, there’s not enough money and alternatives are going to have to be looked at. Hopefully one day the Department of Corrections will not be the largest mental health provider in the state.” We can respond to people’s legitimate concerns about personal safety without sacrificing our children to penal serfdom.

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