Watch where you pack punch
The South Jetty has, since we bought the paper in 1981, offered candidates space free of charge to announce their candidacy. We also have sponsored, for the past 39 years, a Candidates’ Night so voters can see the candidates face to face and hear about their views.
Most candidates have taken advantage of both opportunities.
My issue is with those who don’t.
I think it’s a slap in the face of voters. Perhaps the candidate is trying to take a swing at us (which is to say, me), but that’s not where it lands.
Whether you like me or my views or the decisions we make at the South Jetty, the newspaper is the go-to source of information about all things Port Aransas.
People who care about Port Aransas, people who vote in Port Aransas read the South Jetty.
So, when a candidate fails to submit a statement or does not participate in Candidates’ Night, that tells me, as a voter, that the candidate doesn’t care about me or my vote.
Rick Perry sent the same message to voters in Texas during his last campaign for governor by not meeting with the editorial boards of the state’s major daily newspapers and refusing to debate his opponent, Bill White. He was more interested in controlling his message, which he could do through the electronic media.
Somehow Perry managed to win again. Now that he has to answer the tough questions posed by the national media as a candidate for the GOP presidential nomination, things aren’t working so well for him. No wonder he wanted to hide behind Twitter and Facebook and pre-recorded television commercials.
On the local level, voters want to know about the candidates, and avoiding them by not submitting statements and bowing out of Candidates’ Night is not a Good Thing.
So, if you don’t like me or the South Jetty, make sure your punch doesn’t land on the people you hope will elect you.
Mary Henkel Judson is editor and copublisher of the South Jetty. Contact her at email@example.com, (361) 749-5131 or P.O. Box 1117, Port Aransas, TX 78373.