The Advantages of a Better Community: Community Benevolence

Advantages Explored!

To believe your own thought, to believe that what is true for you in your private heart is true for all men, — that is genius.
— Ralph Waldo Emerson, Essays, On Self-Reliance

I’ve always found comfort in those words.  Hasn’t each of us realized that we probably have more in common with each other than we first thought? I’m not saying that our likes and tastes are all the same (that would be boring), but that our basic hopes and desires look – in the end – very similar.  

Over the next few months, I want to explore in more detail the Advantages of a Better Community, one at a time, in no specific order. These are, to me, the “common denominators” of good community. In some ways, they are reflective of the foundations that already exist here in Coraopolis; in other ways, they are aspirational. Some will resonate with you more than others, but I think you’ll agree they all are advantages we seek. They are the advantages I am working for each day.   I look forward to your own thoughtful comments!

-Shawn


The Advantages of a Better Community: #12 – Community Benevolence

Literally, two months ago, today.  I prepared to launch a campaign to become the Mayor of the Town I Love, Coraopolis.  In that time, five amazing moments occurred:

  • I met hundreds of other Coraopolis residents who wanted to talk about positive, intelligent, caring change in our town. The kind that was starting to happen, and the kind we all want to continue.

  • Ideas and concepts became more articulate, from these conversations with these people. I know what I want to do, more than ever before. And I want to start now.

  • Imaginations were captured, around the good and true ideas that we all really do LOVE CORAOPOLIS and all that is represents, past – present – future.

  • This campaign became immediately legitimate, startling, and significant.

  • Several key people gave their time, talents, humor, passion, guts, and grit to see this through. Stacey and Wil, Chris and Cara, Amy and Mark: you humble and amaze me, always. Thank you for your hearts and minds. Wow.

If you foray into politics, be prepared for some ridiculous questions and curious behaviors. But also be prepared to be amazed at the depth of care that will surround you.  Always, always give people the benefit of the doubt.  I do NOT have all the answers, and I do NOT claim to have the solution to every municipal, regional, or national riddle that faces us. I DO promise to bring as many of us together as possible, providing we are authentic and committed, and work toward the best possible solution.  Foundationally, we are already there. I’ve met “us” – and the us is you.

Thank you for the privilege of the past two months. We have much to do in the months and years ahead, and I can’t wait to get started.

Community benevolence is leaving any and all of our anxiety or lost wagers at the doorstep, and walking full-long into a place of intent. We are a small town with typical small-town problems, but with the benefit of a team of caring citizens and leaders who are ready to seize the unique opportunities that face us.

Let us all travel this road together. Onward. We have work to get done.

SHAWN P. REED
MAYOR OF CORAOPOLIS
WWW.LOVECORAOPOLIS.COM