Tackling the deer issue
In response to concerns raised by Montclair residents due to the population of deer in town, the Montclair Environmental Commission has established a deer team. At the next meeting of the Commission, they will be hearing from a NJ expert on deer management. Her topic is “21st Century Nonlethal Deer Conflict Management.”
I urge interested residents to attend, become informed, and join in the discussion. I am grateful to the Commission for taking on this issue and for exploring the options including effective nonlethal methods. The meeting will be on Wednesday, Sept. 12 at 7:30 pm in the council chambers at the Municipal Building, 205 Claremont Ave.
The importance of voting
I just came home from a walk with my wife in Edgemont Park in Montclair. It winds past the Edgemont School where, I remarked to my wife, “It’ll soon be voting time” (the school is our local election precinct.) Most off-election years, we have struggled to find the motivation to vote for local officials. I have to admit there have been too many times we did not bother. But this year is different. And we think as many of our neighbors in Montclair should know why.
My wife and I thought we were well-represented in Washington. We didn’t really even know who our representative was. We thought it was still Bill Pascrell, a long time Democrat who represented our values. But last year, I heard about a group called NJ 11th for Change that was fighting to make our congressman — a Republican named Rodney Frelinghuysen — more responsive to our values.
At the same time, I started listening to a book about how Republicans have gerrymandered the heck out of every state in the union, including New Jersey. Called Ratf***ed, it helped explain how our district — overwhelmingly Democratic and liberal-minded — came to be represented by a Republican who voted for everything we don’t believe in.
How could this have happened? We were asleep, and not even at the wheel.
Thanks to the hard work of NJ 11th for Change, Rep. Frelinghuysen has decided not to run again. We here in Montclair now have the power to vote for a candidate — Mikie Sherrill — whose platform more closely resembles what my wife and I believe in. Is she perfect? Not quite; we’d like her to be even more progressive than she is. But having her in Congress will be a very important first step in reclaiming the government that the current President and Republican congress seem intent on destroying.
Fellow Montclairions: don’t let what happened to us happen again. Be informed. Be involved. Be the difference. Vote.