To The Daily Sun,
The most basic character qualities I look for in candidates for public office are honesty, integrity, and the ability to treat all people with respect and dignity, including those with whom they have differences of opinion. The absence of any of the three is a sign that the quality will be absent in public life, and will not get my support.
Following closely on my search for these qualities in elected officials are two other requirements: the demonstrated ability to think critically and to interact with political opponents in a manner that finds solutions to public problems.
A person who thinks critically starts with an open mind by genuinely listening to all views that constituents want to have considered. Listening and open-mindedness are lifelong skills most people must work to develop and perfect. Those lacking the skill are busy thinking what to say when they get the chance, then are engaged in pouring their own biases on the other person.
Critical thinking involves more than just listening. It centers on engaging in the evaluation of alternative points of view, doing true research, and working out conclusions about solving a problem. Many people bypass this step and substitute a process of arriving at a conclusion by drawing only on their own biases. This results in largely discarding research and the views of others. Often they also eliminate the listening step. So many letters to the editor do exactly this, with an air of being authentic. Wow!
Solutions, to the contrary, requires finding common ground in an environment of the pet views of those in the conversation, and doing true research to find what has happened in the past and suggested for the future. I do not want candidates who only support my views because I know there are even better solutions available to those who listen, do their homework, and find common ground. The very essence of democracy requires elected officials to listen, find better answers, and not to be blinded by their own biases or bought by high bidders. And today our democracy is being beaten to death by those professing to love her.
Further, I want my elected officials, after engaging in critical thinking and allowing common ground to emerge, to vote their own unbiased position and to allow the solution to be tried in real life. All solutions will not be proven good in real time and can be improved in the future. Even then, I will honor a candidate who is a critical thinker but can admit s/he would not vote that way again. That is proof of critical thinking and does not deserve punishment.
It is apparent, in our county, state and nation that many elected officials do not know how to govern.
If in our families we are wedded to unproven biases and we keep poking each other in the nose, the family will break down. Our political system majors in fielding unproven philosophies and in poking the opposition in the nose or worse. The truth is that both sides have caring and intelligent people who deserve respect from each other — and energies focused on finding the common ground and acting out solutions that can be changed in the future if not successful.
These, then, are the qualities I look for in elected officials. I am a registered independent voter and look to both parties for this kind of candidate: Honest, with integrity, and respect for all people, including those in opposition parties. I honor critical thinking and the focus on finding common ground, and not punishing nor demonizing those who hold different views than my own.
For this reason, I will vote for Lisa DiMartino. She demonstrates all the qualities I seek, and has proven herself in a very unfortunate political battle in Belknap County. She is intelligent, does her homework, and wants to find alternate solutions to community problems. She wants to engage in respectful dialogue with fellow officials to find even better solutions than she started with. She offers herself for re-election genuinely dedicated to public service. What a prize!
We need dozens more elected officials with the qualities Lisa lives out. Thus I am scanning the other candidates in our district to decide who else to vote for. And finally, I urge all voters in Belknap County to elect the candidates with these qualities who can solve our county's very severe problems. This requires all of us to reach beyond our own political biases and party loyalties. I cannot possibly vote a straight-party ticket because I find candidates best qualified on both sides. Please think critically and please vote.
Miller C. Lovett
Last Updated on Wednesday, 22 October 2014 10:08
To The Daily Sun,
In this time of economic hardship. The November election is a critical time for both the county and state. Because of the redistricting two years ago Gilford is now combined with Meredith.
This leads me to the real point of this letter. As a citizen and voter of Gilford, I am pleased there is a credible candidate from Gilford who is running for one of the four seats to represent us in Concord and at the county level as well. George Hurt, a resident of Gilford for over 30 years and a local business man, is the candidate whom I believe will represent all of us when it comes to budget matters and protecting our constitutional freedoms.
I have known George for 15 years and I have known him to be a very honest man that cares about not just our town, but also the future of our state and nation. He enlightens me on some issues that I may not have known about. I cannot think of a time when we did not discuss politics and current events. I always come away from these discussions feeling like we need more people like George in our government. He really cares and he has great ideas.
I know for certain, he is opposed to any broad-base tax and any attempt to abridge our Second Amendment rights. I also know, because of his strong business background. He is focused on legislation that will start the process of creating jobs through a less regulated business environment and a tax-friendly climate.
I find his thinking well-grounded and reasonable, which I cannot say for our current Democrat representative from Gilford.
George will bring leadership and fresh ideas to the legislative process and I am looking forward to Nov. 4 when I can cast my vote for a hard-working and honest individual that will protect the economic future of our families and communities.
Jean M. Ferreira
Last Updated on Wednesday, 22 October 2014 09:49
To The Daily Sun,
The Winnisquam Regional High School History Club is a place where you can spread your patriotic excitement and contribute ideas freely within the school community. History Club is where important projects are created to better the school community through the use of educational activities. This year is one of the most important as we celebrate the 75th anniversary of Winnisquam Regional High School.
The school was dedicated on Jan. 24, 1940, so our club is focusing on this anniversary over the current school year. Students and advisers generated the idea to take a videoed tour of the school and interview community members who were former students or teachers to get their reflections on what the school used to be like and demonstrate how it has changed. The club plans to do other related projects throughout the year related to this anniversary celebration.
Aine Foley & Sydni Chapman
Class of 2017 & WRHS History Club members
Social Studies Teacher/History Club Advisor
Last Updated on Wednesday, 22 October 2014 09:46
To The Daily Sun,
Before starting this campaign, I asked people, what issues were on their minds. Actually, the question was phrased in very personal terms, "If someone could speak for you in Concord, what would that include?" I got back various answers. One woman thought we should raise the $3.25 minimum wage for waitresses. Many wanted better roads. One man wanted to rebuild the Old Man of the Mountain and another wanted to get rid of all politicians.
In our district, many people felt their state reps weren't working for them and were out of touch with the needs of the average citizen. Many said they were being hurt by the high cost of living while their income had stayed the same or been reduced. My response: the people of this district need a friend who really speaks for them in Concord, not a rep who comes up with some political justification for selfishness and opposition to economic and social progress.
To accomplish this goal, I shall bring a successful business background to the state House. For over 25 years, I founded and was C.E.O. of one of the nation's first educational software companies. Under the names of Orange Cherry Software and New Media Schoolhouse, we created and distributed over 400 science, social studies and early childhood programs that sold in nearly every school district in the United States. I had to meet a sizable payroll, every week, for our full- and part-time employees, in a high-tech, high-growth business environment.
As an entrepreneur, I believe state government can be a catalyst in raising our standard of living and helping people and businesses succeed. I support freedom, equal rights for all Americans and income equality that closes the gap between men and women, the ultra rich and the middle class.
Democratic Candidate, District 4: Moultonborough, Sandwich & Tuftonboro
Last Updated on Wednesday, 22 October 2014 09:44
To The Daily Sun,
Now it's election time. If you care enough to vote (and you really should vote... your future depends on it) you have probably looked at the candidates and are thinking about who to support. Who will help the economy the most? Who will help our state the most?
I want to know who will best represent the values and hopes and dreams that I have for my family and those who will come after me? Who will work on providing an environment that will encourage people to try ... to use the education that society pays for and will help the state recoup that investment. Who will instill in our young people the understanding that this great nation is worth fighting for and worth working for. Who will instill the drive to generate a society that is primarily self-sufficient, but never forgets those who need support and assistance? Which leaders will focus on the key issues (economy, business, energy, heath, independence, drive, education, and self-sufficiency) and who will help us move towards a future that, at last, is better than the past?
I look at Walt Havenstein and see that leader. He was a great leader at BAE, successfully transitioned the Sanders incorporation, kept jobs in New Hampshire, worked with UNH to get the technical training in place that businesses here need, led FIRST, and understands technology.
He knows that we are bleeding jobs into Massachusetts, and has plans to stanch that bleeding. He has demonstrated that he can lead a large company, knows how to deal with bureaucracies, can get things done, and is ready to lead our state. He understands politics, government, security, and more. He is what we need. Walt gets my vote. I hope you join me.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 22 October 2014 09:40