What happens after the Issue 26 vote?
My wife and I moved to Cleveland Heights in August 2016, returning to Greater Cleveland after moving back and forth to Toronto on and off for about five years. (The company I work for moved me to Toronto several times on expat assignments.) This was difficult for my wife and I, but we made it work. When we moved back the last time, we were ready to settle down, find a home, and raise a family. We had several ideas of where we wanted to be but didn’t know exactly where that was. We wanted to be within the inner-ring suburbs of Cleveland as we both work in the city, but more importantly, we wanted to move somewhere that was conducive to raising a family, where you could feel the history when you drove through the city, somewhere that was walkable, and into a community that shared similar values.
It’s this last idea that I think we all need to remember once the debate is over about Issue 26. I believe, and I feel many residents would agree, that Cleveland Heights is a progressive neighborhood that values diversity. When I say diversity, this must include diversity of thought and ideas. We are a community that is educated, involved, and aware. With that come varied and diverse ideas about what is and is not wrong with our current form of government, and what should or should not be done to fix it.
Looking at both campaigns I think one can ascertain the point each is trying to make; you may agree or disagree with either side, but that is what diversity of thought is.
In a progressive city with so many great minds living within our community, I don’t think one person—or even seven people, for that matter—can encompass all the ideas and viewpoints of each and every resident.
There have been countless times in our city’s history when citizen action and community organizing has spurred action within the city. So regardless of the form of government we choose, I hope that we continue to value diversity in all forms within our city, and that our residents continue to push for change and challenge the status quo.
We improve our city by making sure all voices are heard. That starts with voting on Nov. 5, and it continues with being involved with, and aware of, what goes on in the city and in your neighborhood all year round.
Rory St. Jean
Rory St. Jean is husband to Ashley and father of one, with another on the way. A finance professional at a Cleveland company, he enjoys getting involved with CH committees and organizations. Music and the outdoors are his retreats.