Thursday, August 5, 2010

Too Much Negativity

If you flipped through the Letters to the Editor in the Columbia Flier, you probably saw a lot of negativity about Mary Kay Sigaty, but a complete absence of anything positive about her primary opponent.

This letter says MKS is the reason local traffic will worsen as GGP's redevelopment plan plays out (and counter-intuitively attempts to use the #2 Ranking against her).

This letter suggests that a village center should be like a choose-your-own topping ice cream bar, and that MKS intentionally dismissed the concerns of the Wilde Lake community.

Neither of these letters were written by Alan Klein, although they were clearly written on his behalf (just as the presumptive letters in response will be on behalf of MKS).  This level of negativity is toxic, and it truly undercuts the credibility of these opinions.  Interestingly enough, both letter refused to go into any substance as to the nature of their complaints (the second even went out of their way NOT to address the merits of the proposal), saving their word count for direct attacks against an individual.

I know I'm supposedly a part of the grand conspiracy to ruin Columbia so that the developers can make a ton of money (how does that work, by the way?), but to the extent I may be considered a somewhat neutral observer (as I consider myself), give up on the negativity.  Studies have shown that it depresses the electorate and does not result in a positive vote for the alternative candidate.  The reason Obama won and Kerry lost had more to do with message than their opponent.  Obama was positive about what could be done.  Kerry was negative about how things were done wrong.  You "nattering nabobs of negativism" may feel good getting a bunch of free punches in on Mary Kay, but you are doing your cause no favors.