Another election cycle fast approaches. Some final thoughts are in order for consideration. Recently, in my back yard with cold beer in hand, the 38th State Senate election came up for discussion. It was said that the Mathias/Carozza race is one humdinger of an election. One person younger than me stated never seeing anything like it. My response was there have been many others over the past.
I further explained about two that came to mind. One being the 1978 Democratic primary nomination for State Delegate between Chip Gordy and the late Mark Pilchard. Two very qualified candidates and all around great men. That election would decide the race. Flip the party 40 years later and it sounds a lot like the same election this past June for the same seat with some modification in district lines. The biggest difference being it was all about blue then; now it is all about red. I would go on from there to know both of them and they weren’t just political people; they were outstanding men. This election was to replace retiring Delegate Russel Hickman from downtown Whaleyville. Not just another local politico, but a real genuine civic leader, too.
I then brought up a Republican primary election in 1974. That involved a bright and principled Congressman from Prince Georges County, Congressman Lawrence Hogan. I first learned about him, from watching the nationally televised Watergate hearings. To me Congressman Hogan, wasn’t just another Congressman; he was a true statesman. I bored in and learned that Congressman Hogan had been an FBI agent before being elected to Congress. He was the text book example of FBI and congressman when both positions had 100% total respect all across this country regardless of politics. He may have lost the 1974 Republican nomination for governor but an example was set for me that left a real impression to this day.
Since serving about 20 years in locally elected and appointed municipal offices here, it is disturbing to see the growing Red-Blue divide here in the region and across the United States. The so called “sick leave” expansion law, which Senator Mathias voted for causing such an out-cry, was about doing the right thing. Bills don’t stop when a person becomes ill. When one works, it is about an earned benefit. Simply, it was the moral thing to do. Senator Mathias is a good blend for beach interest and agricultural interest here.
This is not written to attempt to tell people how to vote . What it is; is a communication about classic historical elections that demonstrate elections do have consequences. As an informed citizen who wants issues solved, not issues for the sake of problem creation what is needed now most is balance. A vote to re-elect Senator Mathias, should not be based on another vote for any other office on the ballot.
Donald L. Lewis
The Buskers in Review
Everyone during the course of their lives does certain things they are proud of and certain things they are not proud of. Some of us spend a lot of time and money trying to atone.
I think the thing I am most proud of in my 69 years is the three years I spent helping with the defense of the human rights of our performers. My comments may seem odd to those of you that latch on and believe in stereotypes but personally I never met a performer who wasn’t well mannered.
Let me tell you some things that happened during our three hard years of litigation. We all had to appear before Judge Bennett in federal court in Baltimore for the culmination of the litigation. Everyone appeared except one plaintiff. Lucian, the large violin player, had to drive from Florida where he performs during the winter. His car broke down and I lent him $200. At the end of this summer, he made a point to repay me before returning to Florida.
The council dragged the lawsuit out for three years spending many hundreds of thousands of our dollars unnecessarily trying to repress these poor proud Boardwalk performers, all due to ego. If it was their own money, they would have acted differently.
Every one of our performers that I have met are self-reliant, independent and although poor they are proud of Ocean City and not on the government dole. Many visitors who came to Ocean City as children return with their kids and introduce them to the same performers.
Like the sand and surf, I hope they are indelibly etched into the future of Ocean City. We should all be proud of our Boardwalk artists and performers. Their presence makes us better.
I am very proud that I was able to help them, you should be proud of them too.
We are busy working with donors to raise money for our Christmas show at the Performing Arts Center on Saturday, Dec. 15 at 4 p.m. called Brian’s Christmas Songbook. Our goal is to raise over $20,000 from donors to keep the cost of the tickets to the show at $10 each. You don’t see the Mid-Atlantic Symphony Orchestra for $10 yet it is important to attract families and kids who otherwise would be unable to afford the show.
I am looking forward to seeing the voters on election day and giving each of you a flyer and a personal invitation to Brian’s Christmas Songbook.
I have been in many of your homes with one or more of my petitions over the last few years. It will be good to see you all again on Election Day, even if you didn’t sign my petition. I look forward to the opportunity to personally wish you a Merry Christmas or Happy Holiday and invite you to our Christmas Show.