A while back I was discussing politics with an acquaintance. He noted that there seems to be a loss of the tightknit community that once existed where we live.
I agreed but asked what he thought the cause might be. He brought up a good point – there has been a change in mentality with respect to working with others to achieve a common goal. It wasn’t that long ago that when someone had a project they were interested in (be it a commemorative or historical marker/statue, park, event or facility), they would form a group and go out to the community (individuals and businesses) to garner the funding and cooperation to see their goal through. Now the immediate reaction is to form a group and immediately turn to government.
This ties into my previous post regarding needs and wants. I suppose a good example is the proposed skate park. Why is the immediate reaction to ask government to dole out everyone else’s money (which they are forced to pay) to fund your project? I’m not sure if they are afraid to go out and raise the funds or if they just simply feel not enough people will be interested in the project and it will fail without government strongarming everyone else to pay-up. According to the Councilman and the large amount of support for the project he cites in the above reference article, proponents shouldn’t be at all afraid of going out to seek funding and they should be confident about the skate park’s success.
The situation is so absurd that for the recent bond regarding the massively expanded Rec Center, one city (Bountiful) actually asked the local Lion’s Club (a service organization) to cough up $1,000 for fancy pamphlets to convince people that they needed a large center and it would be worth the tax hike. The Lion’s Club forked over the money and ended up loosing it’s newly elected president as he considered it a conflict of the Club’s mission.
Ultimately, as my acquaintance stated, there ends up being a loss of ownership and pride in the community as a whole. You see, we didn’t build this or achieve that – the government built it and we just paid for it, like it or not.