A lesson in civility

This weekend I kind of went viral. Not because I tried or wanted to but because my Native heritage was called into question. So I posted my Indian cards and shared some experiences that I faced when I was young like the shame I was made to feel growing up with Native blood. Much to my surprise, the post caught fire and took on a life of its own. I could no longer keep up with the comments or the shares. The post on my page is at 6,130 views, has had 17 shares, and was picked up by a couple news outlets.


I thought I would explain how to address sensitive issues of race in today's climate for those who aren't sure.


If someone posts on your Facebook page with content that most people know is garbage, like a link to My Life, a site with a long history of lawsuits and a known scam, heed caution.


If that post calls a political candidate's race into question, heed extra caution.


What I would have expected from a former alder or business owner who wants to maintain their reputable status, was to immediately denounce the comment. I also would have hoped that he would send a message to the person who posted the offensive message telling them that he doesn't appreciate insensitive comments being posted on his profile.


I would not have expected that he would like the comment or encourage others to share the post. I am disappointed that he chose instead to double down after he was called out on this. I won't be sharing those subsequent screenshots. The civil thing to do would have been to denounce and delete the comment, not to rant further, not to pat himself on the back for a job well done.



I realize that it's easy to get carried away as a keyboard warrior. Most of us have made that mistake once or twice. I lost a good friend during the Act 10 controversy. My husband was a public employee and my friend supported Act 10 and we had the Facebook fight. That was in 2011. I learned from that mistake.


"One of the reasons I'm so excited to serve as mayor is because unifying people starts at the local level."


Someone told me that local politics is worse than national politics. From what I've experienced, I can believe it. One of the reasons I'm so excited to serve as mayor is because unifying people starts at the local level. This nonpartisan seat allows us to come together over our common goals—making our community the best it can be. I have friends who are all over the political spectrum. That's who I am. I am open minded and I put people before politics. The last thing we need right now is divisive politics.


"The last thing we need right now is divisive politics."


I have a flag on my coffee table at city council meetings because I'm a patriot. I'm a patriot because there aren't many countries where I could come from nothing and now be a candidate for mayor. If you perceive our country's flag as a symbol of divisiveness, I hope you'll reconsider. It's a symbol that is there for all of us.


I'm dedicated to justice for all, honesty and transparency. I'm a humble leader that will put residents before my own wants and desires. I hope the name calling and personal attacks soon end. Please watch closely as the spin machine is on high speed. Take a look at who is doing the attacking and the name calling. It is not the challengers. We've been called Trumpers, the Pizza Peddler, Robin Vos, WMC, the angry left, fake representation, accused of bait and switch, and more.


We want better representation for ALL Monona's residents. Think about your experiences with the city over the past five or 10 years. Were they positive? Did you have a good experience? I talked with a lot of people who tell me stories where they weren't heard, or they were disrespected when they went before the council to share their challenges. Eyes rolled, council members snickered, and grumbled while they spoke.


This is not how local government is supposed to operate. Residents tell me that they've lost hope for having representation or being on a committee after applying numerous times and never getting selected. That happened to me too. I applied four times when I moved to Monona. I was so excited to help be a part of my local government. But I could not get through the door. At the time I did not understand. Now I do. I'm not a part of the insiders club. I never have been nor do I ever want to be.


"You have the opportunity for leadership that respects you, that listens to you, that prioritizes you and your needs. That's how local government is supposed to work."


I believe in asking questions at council meetings not just voting the way I'm supposed to. And, I'm called confrontational because I ask questions and want thorough information so I can make the best decisions on your behalf. It's time for a sea change in leadership. You have the opportunity for leadership that respects you, that listens to you, that prioritizes you and your needs. That's how local government is supposed to work. I look forward to getting to work for you as your mayor and I hope I have earned your vote on April 6th.


"...I hope I have earned your vote on April 6th."







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