by Marlene Berlin
We have just been through an election process on the national and local level. Civic engagement is crucial, not only in the national election, but also in our local races and issues. Our democracy demands a lot of us in order for it to work. We forget that democracy can only be as strong as our engagement.
Dzenita Mehic Saracevic, one of our founders, interviewed Kurt Bassuener, an American, friend and former neighbor now working in Sarajevo to build civic engagement in a country whose population sees its government as “other.”
We in Forest Hills often see our local government as “other” and are quick to complain about its failings. But how many of us are willing to become engaged in local politics? This can involve volunteering to be a poll worker, leafleting door-to-door for a candidate, attending ANC meetings, testifying at Council hearings, or writing emails to our officials. There are many ways to be engaged.
The Forest Hills Connection has reported on important local issues that will be impacting our neighborhood: The Broad Branch Road rehabilitation, proposed zoning changes that would change parking requirements for Connecticut Avenue developers, expansion of photo enforcement, closing sidewalk gaps, and the Broad Branch stream ”daylighting.” The ANC will play an important role in many of these issues and needs the community to weigh in.
We will have many new members on our Advisory Neighborhood Commission, ANC 3F: Mary Beth Ray for ANC 3F03; Sally Gresham, ANC 3F04; Manolis Priniotakis, who won a contested election for ANC 3F05; and David Solorzano Lowell, ANC 3F06. Adam Tope of 3F01, Bob Summersgill of 3F07 and Karen Perry of 3F02 will be returning to the commission. We thank them for all their hard work and for continuing to serve our community. I also commend many of the new commissioners and their avid supporters who were out at the polls talking to voters and handing out fliers.
The Forest Hills Connection needs the continued support of the community to do its work with volunteer writers, photographers, and editors. Also, please remember us in your end-of-year donations.
Hope to see you at the monthly ANC meetings, including tonight’s, at 7:30 p.m. EST.