Every four years –sometimes every two years, depending on the election–, we gather at our designated polling place and cast a vote for a candidate for one office or another. Then, we go home and expect everything to get fixed. We expect campaign promises to be kept and we expect our hopes and dreams to be fulfilled and realized by someone in a suit and tie somewhere. That’s it. We did our part. Right?
We can look around us and see that this “system” is not working. Something is broken, but what, exactly? To really get to the heart of the matters that stand in the way of our collective progress, diversity is essential. We need to see the many faces and hear the many voices that make up our local community. Our elected officials, while important as leaders and civil servants, are only one piece of the puzzle we call civilization. We, fellow citizens, are the rest of the puzzle. Let’s come together.
Tonight AIGA , 4th Floor Chatt, and Creative Citizenship will host a candidate forum to give you an opportunity to meet and examine your fellow citizens whom are running for City Council. You are invited to attend. Listen out and hopefully find the champion for your cause or issue, or you may discover that you’re not being represented, and then you’ll have something more to think about.
On Saturday morning, Former State Senator, Andy Berke, a candidate for Mayor of Chattanooga, will speak to us about Creative Citizenship and open the floor for your questions. Then, we will get to work.
Let’s stop preaching to our respective choirs and let’s start reaching out to one another and getting real. Together we will identify issues and develop processes to help us eliminate them and make this city better for all of us. We will envision and decide together what “creative citizenship” is and what it can be moving forward. Let’s build new ways of becoming better creative citizens, and let’s make a difference.
Written by Fernando Martinez, AIGA Cha Membership Director