Letter to the Editor
By Jerri Medina
When I was a kid growing up, I was called a variety of nicknames (some good, and others not so good). Schoolyard stuff, like stupid, four-eyes, trailer trash, red head like the #*ck of a dog, goodie two shoes, etc… Now as an adult, I’m hearing a new set of good and bad names. Conservative, troublemaker, evil president supporter, deplorable, angry woman, and even domestic terrorist. You get the picture the bully is trying to create, that I don’t matter, and that they are a better person. Being different makes people uncomfortable, maybe even afraid.
I say this is because I feel shut out of the Payson elections. I’m an outsider, not from a Pioneer family, not LDS, not pro-MHA. I wasn’t born here, and I don’t even go to one of the “big” churches here. I kept hearing over and over, “I’m not voting for those California implants.” “I don’t trust them, they’re foreigners, they ruined California, and now they want to ruin “MY” Payson.” Payson, like it or not, is a melting pot of people from all over the world, including California. To judge people from where they come from sets up all sorts of wrongful prejudices.
I am finding, much to my dismay, that Payson and Gila County are not exempt from corruption, such as giving out bids to friends or church members, favoritism, and even nepotism in hiring, etc. A person that I know interviewed for a job with the City of Payson and was told (outside the office) she didn’t get the job because she wore her cross to the interview, even though she was the most qualified candidate. We also have the town council trying to “create” a trash department. That’s never come up before this year??? Is this in retaliation to the only council person who votes the way the people want?
Gila County, Payson City jobs, council and mayor positions are not part of a “kingdom” to bequeath to the next of kin, it’s a democratic republic with the people using an election to decide who gets into office. We are supposed to vote for the person most capable of doing the job FOR the people. After this primary, I now have the choice of picking a guy whose dad was a long time Board of Supervisor (the Prince of the kingdom?). Or picking a guy for mayor that lives on someone’s property against the town ordinances. If he doesn’t respect basic town ordinances, how’s he going to be fair and impartial as a Mayor? Or the choice of a dental professional, who couldn’t answer a basic question about the running of the town or council at any of the debates, but he won because he’s “nice and belongs to the right church”. Or a council person is married to an ex-councilman (Duchess, another kingdom position)?
I witnessed one of the local candidates, Mr. Tough, come to a debate venue with the intent of picking a fight with another candidate. How did he think that would turn out? Harassing bullies can become violent with the people they’re lashing out at, taking out their anger in a physical way. They want to control how others see that person. Name-calling is usually done in front of others (or in the public newspaper), encouraging others to view the target person the same as the bully does. Repetition of the name-calling normalizes this type of communication behavior from the bully, giving the bully de facto validation and entitlement. Where does the bully think this type of talk, acting or writing is ok?
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