Dear Editor –
A fallacy of relevance is an error in logic where a proposition or statement is intended to be misleading or false to create a diversion to a subject/topic. This is a very real strategy of some people who are currently leaders or inspire to be one. Whether it is local politics or national, this is a daily reality. My platform is, and always will be, making data-informed decisions in all facets of life. Personal, professional and political. We cannot, and should not accept anything less of any of our leaders.
So I ask each of you to do the same. When someone screams that our local government has raised taxes, ask them for examples. Because we haven’t. Ask questions, like how would you propose to pay for that? Do not accept “bring more businesses in”. This is a favorite go-to by those who do not understand the process. Fort Madison has an excellent tax base. Industry makes up a large portion, yes, adding a few more retail establishments would help, but not for a couple of years. This is not an immediate solution to any financial situation.
When someone screams that the City is not doing enough to recruit business., ask them what they know about the City’s recruitment efforts. Ask them if they have spoken to Fort Madison Partners about their efforts, Fort Madison Economic Development and their efforts, Lee County Economic Development Group and their efforts and the fact that the City is in partnership with all of these entities. The City does not operate in a vacuum nor can they legislate new business into existence. Positive cooperative partnership is where growth comes from, not negativity and name calling.
I ask that the residents of Fort Madison demand more of their local leadership and those inspiring to be local leaders. It is no longer enough to simply speak loudly and insult others. It is time to put up or step back. Our community cannot afford the divide of a hostile leader who has nothing positive to contribute. Rhetoric does not solve problems. Name calling does not solve problems.
Positive, cooperative leadership who can see creative solutions to problems that face our community will get us towards a prosperous Fort Madison. I again, humbly ask that you demand more, ask more, and do not accept anything less than researched, data-informed decisions.