Edited transcript:

Really, New Bedford? A 7.9% voter turnout? Really?

After all we've been through this year. Cape Wind takes a dive. The casino cashes in it's chips. And The Olympics takes dead last. But this is all you can muster? 7.9%?

The first argument that's going to be given to me, and already has, is that this was just a preliminary election that doesn't really matter. Is that so? First of all, if it didn't matter, why do we bother having them? I'll tell you why. It's the process of elimination. The weakest are separated from the rest of the herd.

I understand most of the city could only participate in one facet of the election. But maybe I'm saying that wrong. I'll repeat. Most of the city could ONLY participate in one facet of the election. Yeah. I'm saying that all wrong. Let me remove one word. There we go. Ok. Read this carefully. Most of the city COULD participate in one facet of the election. Most of you in this city had the opportunity, the privilege, for at some point during an eleven-hour span, to find some time to get to a location made extremely convenient to you so that it can't be more than two minutes out of your way. And only 7.9%t, less than 5,000 people can spare the time. Pitiful.

Another reason why I believe the preliminaries are so important. I refer to one of the fathers of modern science, Isaac Newton. An object at rest tends to stay at rest. An object in motion tends to stay in motion. While this is one of the laws of motion, it has been used as a metaphor since it's inception, and I'm not going to spare it that use today. When you start seeing a preliminary election as impractical, as bothersome, as useless....what's to keep you saying that about the general election? What's to keep you from saying to yourself that your vote didn't count for much then, and it won't count for much now?

Meanwhile, those of us who still value our own voice will continue to do so. It's amazing, even to me, that a 24-year-old like myself, and this is not to be braggadocious....a 24-year-old like myself, who doesn't own property, doesn't own a business, doesn't have a political agenda when it comes to the city's well-being, can still find a reason to want to make a change in a city that I barely have a stake in. You know why? Because I want this to be a city I want to be able to make a stake in.

Nearly every day on my program, somebody will call up and inevitably say something to the effect of their generation being the ones paving the way for future generations. I hear it all the time. So please, for the concern of future generations that many of you profess to care about, for your children, for your children's children, don't disappoint us on November 3rd.

And as for the candidates. "...your vote of confidence." "My sincerest thanks..." "Thank you New Bedford." "The showing was phenomenal." These are quotes from four of your five top vote-getters in the Council at Large race. Thanks is fine. Thanks for the support. Thanks for the opportunity. But you candidates have to realize something. This turnout showed very little support. There was a hell of a lot of missed opportunity. It was not a vote of confidence. It was barely a vote at all. Very little confidence was shown by the public. If confidence had been shown, I would not be making this plea today. So candidates, if there is one ounce of sincerity left in your beings, you will join me in expressing your disappointment in the city's enthusiasm, or rather the lack thereof, and call for any and all registered voters to exercise their rights and privileges.

I'm not going to give you the old "people died for this right" routine, but I bet the bodies of those brave souls are rolling in their graves right now by the severe lack of democracy demonstrated in Tuesday's preliminary election. There aren't too many times I've been ashamed of the city as a whole. I can say with all honesty that Tuesday night and the morning after, the shame is very real. And at the risk of returning to my theatrical roots and sounding dramatic, I'm hurting for the city today.

I'll be sure to repeat these sentiments on November 2nd, the day before the general election.


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