The Richardson City Council saw two council members step down, Marta Gómez Frey and Mabel Simpson, after serving only two terms. In contrast, Steve Mitchell and Mark Solomon are beginning their eighth term and sixth term, respectively. At the end of this coming term, both of them will also step down, being the first council members affected by Richardson's term limits. At Monday's City Council meeting, Frey and Simpson gave valedictories, full of gratitude to family and friends, citizens, colleagues, city management and staff.
Marta Gómez Frey's speech was heartfelt as she struggled to maintain her composure. She described her service on City Council as her life's honor. Her sincerity was moving. Her farewell poignant.
Mabel Simpson's valedictory was also full of gratitude, but less emotional. She said she "appreciate[s] my colleagues listening to my conservative perspective and giving consideration to my arguments regarding protection of property rights." Should other conservative council members and those who also respect property rights infer something from those remarks? At the least, she was reprising her agenda for running for City Council. I've criticized candidates who say they have no agenda for running. I ask them, then why run? I never felt in doubt of Mabel Simpson's agenda. There was nothing hidden about it. At the most, on Monday evening Simpson was laying out the basis of her agenda for a future political campaign. Don't be surprised if she looks for an opportunity to run for higher office.
Simpson "reaffirmed the importance of personal communication" and went on to say, "Social media has a very effective role by allowing people within and outside our community to know what's happening in our city." Maybe I just missed it, but she herself seldom used social media to communicate with the community. But, given how another council member did use social media, maybe silence isn't the worst she could do. But why include that in a short valedictory? One comment sounded like she was talking directly at me, but maybe I'm too sensitive. Simpson pointed out "how the new keyboard warriors can erode public trust." Should I resent that remark? To my way of thinking, "keyboard warriors" serve an important role in "Building Trust", not eroding public trust. Mabel Simpson said she looks forward to continuing to serve her community. I do, too, from my keyboard. Maybe our paths will cross again.
Hat tip to Groucho Marx.