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Lexington politics

June 9th, 2004 (03:49 pm)

current mood: discontent

A couple of weekends ago, I was in downtown Lexington. There were people with signs for and against some local referendum--no real details, but apparently about raising taxes. Two facts were noticeable:

  • Neither side was particularly persuasive. The "yes" people had signs saying "YES for Lexington!", and the "no" people mostly had "Vote NO". The closest I saw to an attempt to give an actual reason for or against was a "no" sign that added "It's your money". Yes, and? Money is for spending; their goal should be to persuade voters that the tax isn't worth spending money on.
  • All the "yes" signholders were parents-of-schoolchildren age, and all the "no" signholders were retirement age. That immediately told me that the tax increase was almost certainly to pay for schools, and that Lexington probably has a divide similar to Chelmsford's: parents, who need the schools supported, and retirees, who mostly don't (given how people move around these days, their grandchildren probably live someplace else, and their schools are being opposed by some other set of retirees). And, of course, retirees have more time to participate in local politics.