Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Good Discussion - Hope vs. Fear

I like and appreciate the people who differ with me about the candidate they support. Their ideas and thoughts are important because they have them, and getting to know and hear those thoughts in this forum sharpens and improves my own. David Briley has my vote because he approaches disagreement this way. He is a leader who can listen and evaluate without becoming paralyzed by inaction. Many politicians today act decisively, even ignoring opposing views in order to show their ability to lead. I say leadership lives neither in the tyranny of decisive but blind action nor in the paralysis of endless conversation. David Briley has convinced me that he best understands this razor-thin expectation we place on leaders. He has led well. He listens, he learns, and he acts wisely. He is an inspirational leader. This city is on the verge of exploding as a major city in this country, and our destiny will be best shaped by forward looking, thoughtful deliberation coupled with the courage to act wisely. The danger, as David says often, is not that the other guys will be bad, but that they will not quite expect as much.

David Briley stands for hope and courage. He stands against the efforts to create fear of the other guys. What are the reasons people list for choosing the other candidates? Many (and a generalization here is always somewhat right and somewhat wrong) try to make you afraid to vote for David. They say, "A vote for David is a vote for Buck." "David wants to take over the world." "David denies Dean his rightful momentum."

They are all wrong. There are reasons to prefer the other candidates. As I have repeatedly said, they are all good men who will serve the city well. My vote is for hope...the optimism that we can be served BETTER than well. One candidate convinces me that he can do that - David Briley.

Now, those who take issue with my claims about democracy. Specifically, those who try to say that there is a logical fallacy in saying that person-to-person persuasion can actually determine the outcomes of an election...You have to understand my frustration. When you buy into that cynicism; when you deny hope; you create the fearful, discouraging world that you say you want to avoid.

This conversation will continue after tomorrow. I hope that the seeds of those reading this blog will lead many of you to join this conversation. Hope and optimism CAN work. In the end, hope and optimism will always overcome fear and cynicism in the same way that light overcomes darkness. But, unfortunately, fear can prevent us from having hope in the first place. If we can get a big enough group to reject fear and vote with hope, we will be able to make an incredible impact on our collective future.

Tomorrow is the first round. Win or lose this time, I say that one by one we can take back the political process and be the Nashvillians we want to see.