CampaignPeopleStatementBLOG #2 … Who is this Liberal?

August 26, 20190

Waltham City Council members do not express their party affiliation, either during campaigning or once in office, for good reason.  Politics should be kept out of City Business; the City’s best interest should always come first.

There are so many facets to all of us, and yes, I lean Liberal, but I’m also pretty conservative when it comes to spending and saving money.  So what does a Lizzie Gelles Liberal look like?

I believe that a college education should be affordable and available to whoever wants one. I don’t want advanced education to be something that is accessible only to those who can afford it or those who are prepared to be left with a 6-figure debt.  I’m not suggesting that college should be a free ride for all, but I do believe that we need a plan for lower cost 4 year college education.

I believe that a minimum wage should actually provide a livable wage.  Workers should not have to struggle to makes ends meet by having to work 2 or more full time jobs or rely on food stamps.  I’m not suggesting that retail, hotel and catering, and other labor-intensive industries, pay their workers any more than what would be a fair wage for their time.

I believe that women workers should not be paid less than their male counterparts if they are performing the same work. It’s the work that has the value not the individual performing it.  Why on earth does it make any difference if the worker is different gender?  The same is true for people of color. Historically black men are paid less than white men and black women are paid less than white women- this needs to change.  Salaries and wages should be non-discriminatory!

I believe that America is a country that has a rich culture that comes from our immigrant ancestors and that limiting immigration now will mean that, in the future, our values and principles could be eroded.

I am NOT suggesting that we welcome undocumented immigrants, but the current method of detaining immigrants is cruel and inhumane and may also be sweeping some legal applicants into the morass that has been created by this current administration.  We need to take a look at the current immigration process as it is difficult to navigate and the time it takes for an individual to weave their way through the system is lengthy and expensive.

I believe in social and political correctness.  It’s just polite!  If someone asks me to refer to their community or individual-ness in a certain way, it seems reasonable to me that I would respect that rather than making them (and me) uncomfortable. I would hope they would do the same for me. We know better than being hurtful or inaccurate in labeling people, we should do better!

In another blog post, I will address other liberal principals that I believe in, including climate and environmental concerns, LGBT rights, religious freedoms, healthcare, caring for our elderly and disenfranchised members of society, and other thoughts.

The bottom line is that yes, I am liberal, but I’m definitely not what some people fear, i.e. a leftie whack-a-doodle.  Instead, I’m proud to describe myself as a person who cares deeply for my community, and accept as true that we should address situations in which there is inequality and we should work to prevent suffering.  If you agree, then we are aligned politically.

Lizzie Gelles

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