Jason Gibbs: Service starts at the ballot box
By Signal Contributor
Friday, May 5th, 2017

Earlier this year I applied for appointment to the vacant Santa Clarita City Council seat, and a bit later for the vacated Parks, Recreation and Community Services Commission seat. I have never before pursued public office, but given the current political climate in California l felt a new voice needed to be heard.

Most readers probably haven’t seen my name before, unless you attended The Signal’s public forum for City Council (where Mr. Champion kindly gave me his tie to wear during my closing statement) or the council’s appointment meeting for the open commission seat, so you probably don’t know me or my views.

My speech and positions on serious issues our city faces have been drowned out by the ceaseless online and written bickering about what “civic engagement” really means. While Facebook can provide hours of entertaining viewpoints on the City Council and various appointments, I believe a recent piece by The Signal Editorial Board (“Dynasty stifles engagement in SCV,” April 22) captured the feelings of many who have been denied appointments and those who feel our city leadership is not interested in new thinkers.

Councilman Bill Miranda and Sen. Scott Wilk, R-Antelope Valley, had an hour-long interview on KHTS Friday to refute the opinion piece. Having been involved in both processes discussed in the editorial as an applicant who was not selected to serve, I wanted to offer my thoughts:

Civic engagement, political activism and public service do not start and stop with “dynasty figures.” They start and stop at the ballot box. Successful contributions are made when we listen to all sides, study the effects, and make logical conclusions based on our love of community.

Don’t listen to naysayers who disdain one’s lack of financial backing or political name recognition. Come election time, a council member’s, an assemblyman’s, and even a state senator’s vote is worth the same as your own!

About the author

Signal Contributor

Signal Contributor