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A Semi-Rant:

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Posted by: Tony D at Wed Jun 27 09:09:59 2012  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by Tony D ]  
   

There has been recent discussion about the effectiveness of playing politics when engaged in the legislative process. I view these as distinctively different activities and ones that are best practiced separately for the following reasons:

The primary enabling objective when engaged in the legislative process is to energize and solidify your base and the bigger that base the better. Straying from your issue and playing politics will alienate those of disparate political views thus fracturing the base. Staying focused and expanding on the ideals of your case unifies the base.

Not everyone is a single issue voter nor should they be. The expectation that any representative from a limited pool of choices will agree with all your views is not reasonable and insisting that your support hinges on how a representative stands on a single issue does not establish credibility. Credibility is established by tenacity and the capacity to work honestly with people of disparate backgrounds to advance your case.

Lastly nobody responds well to threats, people who have achieved some level of power and authority least of all. This is particularly the case when you’re dealing with a minority issue where political calculation can easily sideline your voice. Fair or not that is the reality.

I’m reminded of something that Eleanor Roosevelt is credited with saying, “Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.” In the context of facing the rising tide of anti-reptile legislation, the great minds are talking about the efficacy of keeping reptiles with a focus on fostering a greater understanding and appreciation of an often maligned group of animals. Average minds talk about things that have happened and how to control them and small minds malign their political opponents.

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Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind. Emmerson

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