Arriving in my mailbox today was the envy of cultures and peoples across space and time – a ballot. 

Unfortunately, I had no idea of the items there on. Well, that is a personal problem of not being a greater participant in local civics and is not my purpose in writing today. 

On the Gallatin County ballot was a measure doing away with “partisan” (a loaded word) elections. I don’t know how this came about. I am sure well-intentioned people looking to the good of the community proposed it. But sadly good intentions do not always produce good effects. 

In today’s political, and... well... every arena, everything seems to be supercharged with hyperbole, partisanship and division. With words like “nonpartisanship,” how could you ever go wrong with any measure put forward? If mankind were angels and this were the Garden of Eden there would be no need for political parties as all would be good, honest, kind, benevolent and looking to the good of their neighbors. As it is, that is not our current condition, and mankind is far from that ideal. 

It is not an easy thing to find a good, honest and honorable individual in whom we put our sacred trust in to legislate, execute and judge law in our individual stead’s. The bare minimum protection we as individuals have in finding those who, at least, professedly have like ideals and standards is in the party system. Political spin is rampant enough but at least we know where you “lie.”

Todd Pommerville

Belgrade