Fall is packed with new beginnings. It is the start of the new school year, filled with our children’s excitement for fresh learning, old and new friends, and many adventures. It is the time of the Jewish New Year, with calls for renewal and prayers for peace and good deeds in the coming year. And for the first time in Woodbridge, Fall will be the time when we hold our local municipal election.
Access to quality education, religious freedom, and the right to determine those who represent us are fundamental American values that we should never take for granted. We know they are at risk around the country, and even here at home, we face challenges that remind us again that maintaining liberty requires vigilance.
Connecticut enshrines the right to public education in the State Constitution. In Woodbridge, we pride ourselves on our excellence in education, from Beecher Road School through the Amity system. And well we should. Our dedicated teachers and administrators are second to none; they devote their professional lives to preparing our children for the rapidly evolving world of the 21st century.
But our professional educators are under attack. So called “parents’ rights” groups and other forces here in Connecticut are seeking to remove books from library shelves and substitute their personal views on education for those of our professional, trained educators.
Religious freedom and diversity, which we embrace and celebrate here in Woodbridge (don’t miss our 3rd Annual Woodbridge Like Me Day on September 30th), require our attention and protection. We have all read with alarm about the dramatic rise in hate crimes across the nation. Connecticut is not immune and, in fact, ranks among the top 20 states when it comes to hate crimes per 100,000 residents. White supremacists are targeting Black, Asian, and Jewish Connecticut residents, as well as members of the LGBTQ community.
There are many different ways we can participate in civic life and celebrate and protect the values and causes most important to each of us. But above all others stands exercising our right to vote. Being an informed, regular voter ensures that our individual voices are heard, our collective priorities take precedence, and the foundation of our democracy remains firm.
I know that my counterpart in the Woodbridge Republican party has called election time the “silly season.” But I see it quite differently. While politics is a team activity, it is not a game. It is how we learn about issues and candidates and exercise our responsibilities as American voters.
The Woodbridge Democratic Town Committee is committed to providing factual information to voters and to facilitate your knowing our candidates, their values, and their goals for our Town.
Please join us at our headquarters Grand Opening in the old UPS building at 176 Amity Road on Thursday, September 7th from 4-7PM and meet our First Selectman Candidate Mica Cardozo and other candidates on the Democratic ticket. Children are always welcome.
Following are your friends and neighbors who make up our outstanding slate of candidates:
First Selectman Mica Cardozo
Board of Selectmen Maria Madonick, Sheila McCreven Steven Munno
Woodbridge Board of Education Steven Lawrence, Erin Williamson
Amity Board of Education Sudhir Karunakaran, Patrick Reed
Board of Assessment Appeals Jeff Ginzberg
Zoning Board of Appeals Shawn Flynn, Kal Watsky
Zoning Board of Appeals Alternate Lauren Francese
We will be holding weekly open houses at headquarters starting on Wednesday, September 13th from 6-8PM. Days and times may vary. Please check our website at woodbridgedems.org/election for information about our candidates and for updates on our open houses and other events. If you would like to help on the campaign or have questions for us, please email us at email@example.com.
We look forward to seeing you and having you meet Mica and his team!
<span class="fineprint">This is an opinion not necessarily endorsed by the Woodbridge Town News.</span>