It was one of my first meetings at CAMP, and one of my most memorable. Senator Tom Carper came to Rehoboth to check in and see how CAMP Rehoboth was doing. We didn’t meet in the office; instead, the Senator suggested we go for a walk on the beach. It was long before COVID, and a beautiful day. It was remarkable in many ways (I’ve never had a business meeting with an ocean view), but for me personally one thing stood out.
As a DC resident, I did not have voting representation in Congress, but now, as a Delawarean, I was sitting next to a Senator who not only had a vote in Congress but was asking my opinion about it. It is exciting to live in a state that can control its own budget, pass its own laws without congressional interference, and have its citizens enjoy equal representation in the US House of Representatives and the US Senate. I wish the same rights for every resident of the District of Columbia, or the State of Washington, Douglas Commonwealth, as it may one day be known in honor of Frederick Douglas. As a Delaware resident with a vote and a voice, I am excited to be part of the process.
Thomas Mann once said: “Everything is politics,” and in these politically divisive times we live in, I am inclined to believe that is true. The simple acts of social distancing and wearing masks have somehow taken on a political tone. Both Fay Jacobs and David Garret touch on this in the articles they have written for this issue. As Thomas Michael Ford discusses in his article, even the simple statement “Black Lives Matter” can be a political firestorm. These are challenging times, of course, but we press on.
“The worst thing that can happen in a democracy—as well as in an individual's life—is to become cynical about the future and lose hope: That is the end, and we cannot let that happen." These words from Hillary Clinton ring true for me as well. Thankfully, there are many places where hope can be found. In this issue, Tyler Mendelson reflects on the incredible transformation Pride celebrations have taken this year, and the inspirational queer and trans people of color who are leading those efforts.
And, of course, each new election offers hope and the possibility of change. The upcoming election in November, as hyperbolic as it may sound, may indeed be the most important election in our lifetime.
Every election, however, is important. For residents of Rehoboth you have the opportunity to learn more about the candidates running for office in this issue Letters. You are also invited to join CAMP Rehoboth and the Rehoboth Beach Homeowners Association for a virtual candidate forum on July 18th.
Please take a moment to read up on our candidates, and make sure you are ready to vote either in person or through an absentee ballot. Look for information about voting and upcoming elections in this issue from our friends at the League of Women Voters. And remember to vote. I hold out a lot of hope for our future here in Rehoboth and in this country because I know you will be doing exactly that.