Over the weekend Arizona Republic readers might have noticed a letter to the editor from David Ortega. He waxed ineloquent, as history most often records his commentaries, about the inadequacies of Proposition 123. There are good arguments on both sides of that issue, though many more in support. This is not meant to be judgment on them. Only on Ortega.
For he noticeably signed his letter “former Scottsdale City Councilman.” Dude, that was over a decade ago and we’re really not sure why such a title would qualify him any more than anyone else to opine about contemporary education policy.
What is it with people who can’t let go of such identity? It’s like the Grandpa who threw a no-hitter in high school and can’t stop telling the family about it every holiday dinner.
Ortega has tried to get back in the spotlight for years, even running a failed attempt for Maricopa County Supervisor. Democracy has been smart to not allow him such opportunity. And democracy is usually at its best when it retires people who seek office not for the destination, but for the journey.
In Scottsdale Ortega stands in marked contrast to someone like Mary Manross. She lost a very close mayoral re-election campaign in 2008 but has continued to make a difference in town with a humility that always personified her service.
She’s not Manross former Mayor. As a result, there’s just something about Mary that should be a lesson to others.