A pleasant change for both partiesBy JACK LINTON,
With the runoffs last week, the 2018 mid-term elections finally came to an end for Mississippians.
I would say thank God, but with name calling, smear tactics, and general lack of class by both parties, I am confident God had little to do with the election or lately, with American politics in general.
Since the election, I have heard a lot of moaning and groaning about the outcome.
The Epsy supporters say the state missed a great opportunity to bring about change and show we are a progressive state ready to move forward.
Maybe so, but the truth is the Democratic party at both state and federal levels struggles to provide viable, baggage-free candidates to inspire change and sway borderline voters to their cause.
The second truth is if Mississippians continue to look to a political party for change, change will be slow (if it happens at all) regardless of the party in power.
Only the people can truly bring about change, and that is by voting even though the results do not always workout like we hoped; by revolution, which is messy and often temporary; or by education, which is unsatisfactorily slow but over time tends to be a more permanent solution.
Race relation in Mississippi is a good example.
Although race relations still travel hard in the state, today those relations are much better than they were 50 years ago, and that is the result of rolling back ignorance through education in schools and in homes.
Today, Mississippi kids no longer see black and white the way my generation and previous generations did, and that is good but slow in coming.
The line between black and white has been blurred, and over time the same will happen with hardcore conservative and liberal sentiments.
In the future, a new generation will be born where the line between black and white and conservative and liberal will only exist in the hearts and minds of dinosaurs drawing their last breaths.
I am not talking about the demise of conservative or liberal values, but rather an educated society that can engage in discourse absent of name calling and labeling.
I am talking about a society that understands the color of a man’s skin does not make him a conservative or a liberal, a Democrat or a Republican, or right or wrong.
I am talking about the rise of a generation that will stomp on the neck of the serpent and treat all people with respect for their beliefs, culture, values and worth as human beings. Unfortunately, that day has not come, but until it does, there are better ways to spend time than crying over spilt milk.
The election was won fair and square! If you don’t like the results look for a better candidate for the next round in two years.
Maybe a candidate can be found who doesn’t need to defend his/her past (right or wrong), and one who will speak to what he/she will do if elected rather than - like his opponent - point fingers and name call.
Wouldn’t that be a pleasant change for both parties?
Now retired, Jack Linton served as assistant superintendent of Petal Schools from 2007 to 2013. Prior to that, he was principal of Petal High School from 1997 to 2007. In 2004, Linton was named Mississippi High School Principal of the Year. A native of Lamar County, he graduated with degrees from both the University of Southern Mississippi and William Carey University.