Social Side Of Town Meeting

I have an idea, let’s hold a meeting!

Ahh, the sun is out, flowers are beginning to stretch and reach for the sky, landscapers are putting down mulch, lawn mowers at the ready, and we’re beginning to see walkers, joggers, bicycles and baseball. Yes, the all-American sport of baseball, and of course we fully expect another run at the championship. I’ll say nothing about the team in first place at the moment. As my mother told me, “If you can’t say something nice, do not say anything.”

So, it must be, it has to be, it surely is time for Town Meeting, where in our land of freedom we show up, we ask questions, we make decisions, and we vote. When you think about it, what an opportunity to get out and meet friends, enjoy brief conversations about budget, expenses, escalating costs, snow plowing this year, and a host of other things. How’s the wife, how’s the husband, how are the kids doing, my the cost of college today, and gee, I haven’t seen you since, well, I guess since last Town Meeting!

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Well, I seem to be a pain in the neck on an ongoing basis about attendance at Town Meeting. I’ve written letters to the editor, and a couple have been printed and put in the paper. I appreciate that. I mention it at selectmen meetings, and we are in the process of working on a Mashpee TV series titled, “There’s Something About Mashpee,” and one of the segments is about Town Meeting attendance as well. I guess it’s something that I believe is an integral part of our society: the opportunity to have a say in how things are done.

Growing up as a kid, I offered my opinion on occasion (more than on occasion, I understand from my family) and it was accepted as such; very few times did it actually change things, but my parents exercised patience, patience, and more patience. They did what they were supposed to do as parents, and gave me some leeway in thought, but in action, well, they were the parents. But persistence did pay off, as on occasion I did have an impact on outcomes.

At any rate, I am encouraging all that believe in what we have, to consider attending Town Meeting. It’s really not a difficult thing, as it is only a couple of hours. Not much longer than a TV show or a movie, or dinner at a local restaurant—and, in today’s economic conditions, it is, yes, it is—free.

Free parking, free seating, free handouts (okay, paper stuff), free lighting, free interaction and thought, and most of all free-dom.

So, come on out and celebrate spring with family and friends, while exercising your right to make decisions and support your town officials as they work very diligently at making Mashpee magnificent.

Michael R. Richardson
Mashpee Selectman

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