NFTU is a place I created for my "darker" thoughts. But today is a good day, so I'll let some light in.
Donna Deegan, in fact, won the mayor's race. "Love over fear," and "Change for good" were her two campaign themes. The latter probably more visible, but one often heard Donna say "love over fear," during the campaign. Something of a personal mantra from her experience with breast cancer.
There are two "hot takes" I'd commend to your reading, both by local journalists and keen observers of Jacksonville politics. The first is by A.G. Gancarski. Key take-away: "Jacksonville elections haven’t brought a sense of hope in a long time. This year is different. And that’s significant beyond the feel-good moment."
The second is from Florida Times-Union columnist, Nate Monroe. Key take-away: "It turns out something still matters after all."
My hope is that Donna's victory is a cold breath down the backs of all the faithless, feckless, selfish and self-serving members of Jacksonville City Council. That this serves as a wake-up call that people in Jacksonville are on to them, and they're tired of it and they're not having it anymore.
A city council that tried to gerrymander districts "to protect incumbents," despite being ordered by a federal judge to do otherwise. Scare quotes are used because it was the phrase the city council decided it could use and not be accused of redistricting on the basis of race.
A city council with a large number of non-profit CEOs who appropriate money to themselves.
Jacksonville is a city of enormous potential, which has been mired in mediocrity for decades by an ossified political class accustomed to having its own way and doing favors for itself at the expense of the city as a whole. Ambitious individuals seeking careers in politics were able to exploit this by catering to the ruling "donor class," promoting their own careers at the expense of the city.
Donna has shattered that.
Not just the "glass ceiling," but a sclerotic, myopic, barnacle-encrusted leviathan that has been drowning Jacksonville's potential in a sea of self-dealing.
Today is a good day.
It's not all sunshine and roses, but we can talk about that later. For now, we can just enjoy the view as the dawn breaks on a new day for the Bold New City of the South.
Originally posted at Notes From the Underground 04:55 Wednesday, 17 May 2023