Every community has critics. And that’s a good thing, especially in an age of a declining fourth estate. Their eyes, ears and energy can be just what’s needed to shine a light into some darker places.
But in Scottsdale activism has become its own art form, its own sport. While there are certainly problems in one of America’s best cities some of the criticism operates in an existential-like luxury of complaint – kind of like Peter Cook cheating on Christie Brinkley. He was lucky to be married to her before he wasn’t, like Scottsdale residents are fortunate to live where they do, until they don’t.
Again, don’t get us wrong. Scottsdale Ferrari-Maserati just moved off of McDowell Road northward into Phoenix. While a used car dealer took its place it reminds all that McDowell Road continues to be an urban sore, decades after the problem was understood. And will Scottsdale have enough revenue to complete the amazing achievement to date that has been the McDowell Sonoran Preserve? The city’s Entertainment District is, overall, a great asset but some of the operators there are not exactly Johnny Responsible.
And then there’s the failed General Plan and recent bond package votes. For a city that has most voters feeling things are headed in the right direction voters thought those proposals were wrong.
Finally, there’s the Scottsdale School District bond loss. We are enthusiasts for school choice but can any great city have a public school system spiraling downward? We are all for doing more with less but at some point our Republican friends in the city need to understand that less and less money for schools isn’t more – and they hurt their own investments and community by eviscerating local schools.
This all brings us as Paul Simon might have observed to the sounds of silence from Scottsdale critics today. That’s when the Arizona Republic just reported that Scottsdale has been ranked the sixth-best run city in the country. Here is a link to the article. This on the heels of other reports showing a drop in Scottsdale crime.
Aren’t these the two things we want government to do best? Run efficiently and protect the citizens?
Incumbent Scottsdale Councilmembers Dennis Robbins and Linda Milhaven seeking re-election later this year will have powerful arguments to make in an impressive field of candidates.
So critics, keep at it. But every now and then it is nice to have the birds stop chirping.