Quay County Sun - Serving the High Plains

Perceptions, stigmas are hard to shake

 

January 27, 2015

Robert Arrowsmith

link Robert Arrowsmith

CMI Publisher

Yes, this is going to be another rant.

I am not trying to appear condescending, but I realize it comes across that way sometimes. And like anything else, until you meet and get to know the person, you are basically living with your own perception.

Quickly …

Name the members of the board of your Chamber of Commerce.

Name the members of the board of the United Way.

Name the members of your school board.

Without looking at the website, name the members of the Committee of Fifty. The committee has its reputation. Name the individual you believe is shifty.

If there is one thing I have known all my life, and it took years for my own family to believe, it is that until you get to know someone, perception is reality.

But let’s get clear again about something. The Committee of Fifty’s purpose is for Cannon Air Force Base. There are members of the committee that are involved in other projects that may upset, concern, disconcert you, etc. But those issues that you are concerned about need to go to those organizations that they are a member of. Talk to the individual about your city concerns. Go address their board. The Committee of Fifty has no authority or say as a committee in regard to what happens if your concern doesn’t have anything to with Cannon. It is not the purpose or the mission of the committee.

I do get where misconceptions can occur. I myself am a member of the Committee of Fifty, I am the president of Portales MainStreet, an executive committee member of the Portales Chamber of Commerce, a board member of the Clovis Chamber of Commerce, a board member of Tucumcari MainStreet, and I am working on becoming a board member of the United Way.

There are many individuals that are involved in at least as many organizations, if not more,than I am.

So I can see, and have seen it already, where people want to talk to me about issues and concerns.

I don’t blame the public in their misconceptions at this point. If someone is in multiple organizations, and you know the person, or want to talk to the person, it is easy to think that talking to the person would cover the entire spectrum of what your concern is. If you think a person is shifty in some way, it is easy for you to think they are shifty in everything they do.

Stigmas can be hard to shake. Respect has to be earned from the beginning. It is better to be respected than liked because it is easier to be liked, and that can come and go based on the topic. But understand that in a small community many people wear many hats.

So what I ask is to pass judgment on the individual. Odds are the organization they are involved in as a whole is most likely out to try and do some good for the community.

Robert Arrowsmith is publisher of Clovis Media Inc. Contact him at:

[email protected]

 

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