I want to give you something to think about this weekend. We all see it. This person likes this party or politician, and that person likes that party or politician. They both are “good friends” of yours, but not necessarily safe to have at the same dinner party! Everyday on social media, the White Hats and Black Hats of each issue battle it out on Twitter. People get muted on Facebook. What’s to be done?
Here’s what I want you to think about. Can you let yourself get involved in your location HOA, Town, County or Government?
I have to tell you, I used to personally think, my only answer could be NO!
Then, I got involved. First with my Homeowners Association. With the help of some of our other homeowners, we have presided over our community together for more than 10 years, and the results have been very positive! It’s a zero sum game, but well worth the effort.
Then I researched the volunteer positions in my own town of Centennial, CO. First I served on the Senior Commission. I wasn’t ready for this appointment. I found my way to the Election Commission in our town, and I’ve been there for several years now. The election process is very interesting. If you have even a sneaking suspicion of elections in your town being something less than fully transparent, get involved! I can tell you without a shade of doubt, our town and county have fool proof election proceedings!
From there, I went on to Centennial 101. It is an introductory course offered by our town to create more community engagement. Public Works, Budgeting, Zoning, Building Codes, Open Space and more were covered. It is fascinating how a city operates. Most of Centennials services have been outsourced. Containing costs with a very responsive team of experts was the realized objective.
From there, I attending the (SMFRA) South Metro Fire Rescue Authority’s Citizens Academy. This 7 week program is so much more than climbing a ladder. Understanding the daily routine of your first responders should be paramount for every citizen in every community. Jumping out of 5th story window on the end of a rope should be enjoyed by all TOO!
From all this, I heard about Arapahoe County’s Citizen’s Academy. From K-9 searches to car chases to Incarceration to the gun range to discussions, I just couldn’t get enough of this.
And that is why, last night was my first class with the DEA’s Citizen’s Academy. There is a lot online to read about this experience, but if you can find a way to get accepted, the experience will be incredible. On the Virtual Reality Gun Range last night, I had to “take out” a perpetrator. It was very disturbing. Can you imagine what this is like in realtime? When faced with a life threatening decision, one half second can be the factor between life and death. When a $1,200 Kilo in Columba becomes a $30,000 Kilo in the US, it’s not stopping anytime soon.
All I can tell you is, I can’t be more proud of the organizations and individuals working constantly behind the scenes to help make our world safer, cleaner and more comfortable for us all, and that’s something we can all share.
My point here is not to brag about my involvement. My point is to encourage your own involvement in your communities. My belief is we are all adults. We all have opinions, but, we can learn from and teach some from our own experiences in life. Just maybe, we can come closer together or understand our competing views.
Safe Travels My Friends…tc