In many Detroit neighborhoods groups are coming together to weigh the candidates running for office in the upcoming election on August 5. Those groups will endorse people who they believe will further the city’s transformation and create a safer, cleaner, more vibrant Detroit.
These groups are embracing the freedoms we so often take for granted in the United States. In so many nations where freedom is not an option groups such as these would, at best, quickly disbanded or, at worst, its members jailed or executed.
We have the right to endorse candidates.
We have the right to have a passport and travel where we’d like.
We have the right to protest.
We have the right to be free.
I wear a US flag pin almost every day. It shows what our nation stands for and the sacrifices made by so many to maintain our freedoms and way of life. It also reminds me that everyone who lives in the US is connected to one another. We can never forget that as a nation or as a city. It is something to teach our children and to remember as adults.
Many have sacrificed so we can worship the way we want, say or write what we want and go where we want. As we look around the world today we know we are blessed to have these freedoms.
Those freedoms come with responsibilities.
- Educating our people
- Keeping our communities safe
- Maintaining open spaces so people can gather
- Giving back to the community in which we live
- Respecting diversity and encouraging inclusion
- Respecting those committed to our safety and security … police officers, firefighters, crossing guards, sanitation crews and so many more
The biggest responsibility for all of us is to set an example. Those grass roots groups engaged in the election process are doing just that. They are setting a high bar and it’s paying off in Detroit’s comeback. Each of us as Detroiters has the responsibility to also set a high bar and vote in every election … primary and general.
Each day when we wake up in our country or in our city, no matter how much we need to improve them, we have the advantage. We have the right to be engaged, value where we are and make a difference. One way to make that difference is to vote and to vote your principles.
We are blessed to be able to vote our principles and to stand up for them. With grass roots efforts in our neighborhoods and communities aimed at electing the best candidates Detroiters will do just that. They will make difference with their vote on August 5 and again in November.