The residents of Moab and Grand county are extremely passionate about their community. We understand that during election season those passions often get amplified, after all, our ability to vote for candidates is fundamental to our democracy and one of the most powerful tools we have as local citizens. Although we applaud everyone’s passion for and desire to protect our town (after all, those were key components in both our decision to run for elected office last year), we feel compelled to remind everyone of the saying that “even the best of intentions can have unintended consequences.”
Both of us have heard from residents who say that they would like to engage more in the civic process, but that they are hesitant to do so because of potential attacks they may face from others. At a time when we are all facing so many large-scale issues, local elected officials need to hear a variety of perspectives that represent the diversity of people across our city and county. The more information we have available to us, the better decisions we are able to make. This reduces potential blind spots and enables us to meet the most important requirement of our position as City Councilors: to try to represent the will of the people.
We would also like to remind everyone that the people who are running for elected office are not just candidates, but also our friends, neighbors, family members, and, simply, fellow members of this community. After the elections are over, win or lose, they will still continue to be all of those things.
We believe that the sign of a good leader is someone who leads by example, so let us serve as proof that it is possible to disagree and to still hold a tremendous amount of respect for each other. Although we may have already found ourselves at the opposite end of some votes in our short time on the council, we have never let that get in the way of our understanding that the other person’s decisions are being made with the best interests of our community at heart, even if those decisions sometimes lead us down different paths. As a small and close-knit community, it is doubly important that we allow the real-life words and actions of individuals to define who they are, not our own assumptions.
So, as we move forward we ask that our community remembers that in moments of crises Moabites always come together in support of one another. Let’s all work to make this a reality year-round, not just when floodwaters lap at our door.
Councilman Jason Taylor
Councilman Lukasz Wojciechowski