Dave Richards for September 4th…………….
--A note of congratulations to all who organized and volunteered for the just concluded LevittAMP Woonsocket Concert Series. A good time was had by all, and I hear talk of wanting to do it again next summer. Stay tuned for further developments.
This coming Saturday the Northern Rhode Island Council for the Arts will take over the River Island Art Park at 9am for the day long French Heritage Festival. In addition to arts and crafts, exhibits, and food, two French-Canadian bands will play and it’s all free for you.
When we were growing up there were dozens of these celebrations. These days, this is the big one. Anyone who remembers the days when French was spoken in the stores every day and just about everywhere in Woonsocket will feel quite at home this weekend. I think it warms the heart to go back to your childhood now and then. And, for those who do ‘parlez vous’, you’ll really enjoy yourselves listening to the live musicians playing songs you’ll remember from years ago.
Then in the evening, the fun moves up the hill to the cafeteria of the Holy Trinity School (formerly Our Lady Queen of Martyrs) for a good old fashion Soiree, including more live entertainment, beer and dynamites and soft drinks and hot dogs. Tickets are only $10. Don’t miss it. This kind of event is few in number and far between these days.
--Oh, and speaking of ‘dynamites’, I bumped into the President of the Blackstone Valley Tourism Council, Bob Billington, at last Friday’s concert in the park. Bob was on a mission. Now, I’ve learned over the years that when Bob Billington puts his mind to something, even the brave stand back.
Bob told me he’s bugged by an article he was interviewed for by a reporter from a newspaper in Maine. The reporter wanted his comments on the claim of the people of Madison, Maine who say that they, not Woonsocket, invented the Dynamite Sandwich. Tom Tatro, of A Special Place, makes regular business trips to that area of Maine. He brought Bob a supply of what these Mainers call “Dynamites”. Now, Bob is working to organize a public challenge to prove Woonsocket is, indeed, the birthplace of the Dynamite Sandwich. Stay tuned for further developments on what could develop into an “explosive debate.”
--I received a larger than usual number of comments about last week’s column. Also unusual was the number of people who agreed with my sentiments. Some thought that I made my point well, even without “calling out” the players by name. Based upon this response, I feel the message of my comment is so important that I would do well to restate it for those of you who may have missed it.
If you agree with me that people in government should give up the “win at all costs and destroy anyone who disagrees with me” attitude, then you should vote accordingly.
One of the responses to last week’s column came from a former city official who told me when he was on the council years ago the members used to disagree all the time with each other on issues, but once the vote was taken they all put the disagreements behind them and moved on to the next bit of business, which they would then “vigorously discuss”, just as they did the previous issue. There were no personal attacks or skullduggery, and the business of the city moved forward.
I think there are too many weak personalities in politics these days. I call them ‘weak personalities’ because it doesn’t take real strength to be an obstructionist. That only takes hate and spite. I say it takes true strength of character to work with people you don’t get along with, and a positive attitude which will eventually show a way to compromise. And remember, a compromise is when both sides win a little and lose a little from what they originally wanted. History is full of examples showing when one side wins all, it’s the beginning of the end. Resentment sets in, resistance galvanizes, and the winner has to resort to more and more bullying to maintain their position until they eventually go too far and destroy themselves.
It starts with us, the voters. Do not elect people who have no appetite for a lively debate and a civil acceptance of the views of others with an eye toward compromise.
I won’t vote for them.
--That’s what I think. What do you think? Comments to: email@example.com or postal mail to Dave Richards, WOON Radio, 985 Park Avenue, Woonsocket, RI 02895-6332.
Thanks for reading.
WOON AM & FM Radio
985 Park Avenue
Woonsocket, RI 02895-6332