Scheck: A plea for civility to Representative Kolodin


Civility: “Formal politeness and courtesy in behavior or speech.” Unfortunately, when it comes to politics this word seems to have disappeared from the people who not just represent us on the federal level, but also at the state level. 

I truly believe, no matter what party you are in, that we all expect our elected leaders to model the word “civility.” That they talk to their constituents, no matter who they voted for, with respect and be able to have a conversation even if they disagree with the opinion of who they are talking to. 

I have had discussions across the political spectrum and sometimes the conversations get spirited. I can promise you that during these conversations I have never been demeaning and have treated the person with respect. Most of the time we walk away appreciating the exchanging of ideas even though we do not agree with each other. I understand that we all have our opinions and that we see things in a multitude of ways because we all have different backgrounds and experiences. That is a good thing. That’s what makes this country great. Over 300 million people live together with different cultures, lifestyles, experiences, opinions and more.

We used to see this type of civil exchange more often than we do now with our elected leaders. Sadly, we have normalized this because we have become so used to seeing it. We have become numb to it. I don’t want to be numb to it anymore and we must start calling out the behavior that has divided us. 

Rep. Kolodin is our elected official in LD3. I spoke with him a few weeks ago and, though we have very different philosophies, I did appreciate that he took the time to talk to me. He listened to everything I had to say, and I listened to him. We may have been frustrated by the conversation because we don’t see eye to eye on many subjects, but we kept it civil. The way it should be, and I respected that. 

That respect seems to have been limited to our phone conversation because what was shown to me regarding his comments to people he didn’t agree with on social media was anything but civil. The repulsive, ignorant terminology he was using is not worth repeating and I can’t even get myself to type it because of how immature and disgusting it truly is. 

From what I can tell, Rep. Kolodin, you are proud of your actions and think that this makes you a leader. A leader would represent not just the people who voted for you, but also the people who didn’t. If someone I voted for acted the way you have, I would certainly be calling them out as well because I do not want someone representing me who acts in such a disrespectful and distasteful manner.

Would you like to be remembered as a respected person who fought so hard for water rights in Rio Verde or would you like to be remembered for your vulgar, offensive comments? I would like to believe, based on our conversation, that you are better than this and I hope you would expect more from yourself as your constituents expect from you, or maybe I'll just be another offensive comment for your social media page. One day, maybe, we can have another conversation regarding this. A “civil” conversation.