January 28, 2009

Letter to the Editor: Ron Thomas

As a former seven term Alderman and Mayoral candidate in 2003 who is not seeking an elected position I recognize today what I did in 2003. “There are many good and positive things happening in Racine.”

As a community, we are only as strong as our most vulnerable populations. The vision Racine must have is that of a community which reflects the City mission statement, “We shall respond to the needs of our citizens by enhancing the quality of life.” This statement encompasses every person from every walk of life, every age group and every economic class.

In the very near future, the citizens of Racine are going to hear from a number of candidates who are seeking the position of Mayor within our community. As someone who has campaigned for the position of Mayor in the past and who is deeply interested in the welfare of this community, I thought I would ask the mayoral candidates to consider taking the “high road” in their respective campaigns.

Our community suffers from a poor image, and the well publicized activities of our former Mayor have further contributed to this perception. It is very easy to campaign and stress the shortcomings of our community and never offer any real solutions. Therefore, it is my fear that some candidates will run their campaigns on a platform that accentuates community problems and further contributes to our poor reputation. I know that we do have problems, and I am not asking candidates to turn a blind eye to them; but there are great things going on in our community. Furthermore, many good people are working, daily, to make Racine a better place to live, work and raise a family. I firmly believe that Racine is a great place to live and that there is hope for an even brighter tomorrow for Racine.

I hope to hear the candidates talk about the Workforce Development Strategy for Racine County titled “Higher Expectations.” The six challenges clearly articulate the high road for the Mayoral election:
  1. Raising standards and expectations for public education.
  2. Supporting stronger more financially stable families.
  3. Creating jobs in communities with concentrations of unemployed workers.
  4. Enhancing workforce transportation alternatives.
  5. Improving job seeker information about opportunities in new and expanding businesses.
  6. Communicating a more positive community image.
So, to those who are campaigning to become Racine’s next Mayor, please take an ethical course in your campaigns. Present solutions to our problems and avoid being overly critical. In addition, seize opportunities to mention the good things that are occurring and avoid doing further damage to our image. It would be wonderful if your campaigns would instill hope in the future and lift us from where we currently sit.

Respectfully submitted,

Ron Thomas
1429 Grange Avenue
Racine, Wisconsin 53405


  1. Ron, we need YOU!

  2. Thanks, Ron, for your important comments. They should be read and considered by all. This is not a time for ego, but a time of serving and contributing.

  3. Sorry but this is a joke. I really love #5 - the library has computers with Internet access to look at job boards, plus unemployed folks have to go to a half day of training at the Workforce Development Center to learn how best to look for jobs. Should there be a multi-million dollar program to employ a staff to scan the Internet to find job opportunities then walk each one to an unemployed person's door?

  4. This all sounds good. People should balance the positive with the negative and be respectful.

    I do think it is appropriate for candidates to express differences with their opponents. In the 2003 mayoral election, there was none of this (everyone was too nice) and I don't feel the voters had an informed choice.

    That said, it has to be done with respect.

  5. Is this letter to protect Turner?

  6. "4. Enhancing workforce transportation alternatives."

    What does that mean?

    The FIRST thing that any candidate needs to do is speak plain English. Enough of the jargon and mumbo-jumbo used to slip lies to the public. If you are for KRM, SAY SO. If you are against KRM, SAY SO.

    Say what you mean and mean what you say.

    We're already buried in BS. We don't need clarion calls for more.

  7. Hey, you people whould check this out: realdebatewisconsin.blogspot.com

    seems there is a post there about Rob Turner getting chosen to run from Madison for this mayor - AND HE'S GOING TO KEEP BOTH JOBS - what kind of crap is this?

  8. Anon 12:32: "...what kind of crap is this?"

    Blogger Fred kinda crap. Mason, Lehman and Turner each have just one vote in any election for mayor. They're each free to choose whether to run or not, but the ultimate decision is up to the voters. Mason has already decided not to run; Turner is said to be considering it; Lehman's been mum on the subject, far as I know, but I'd be surprised to see him join the pack. If one of 'em does run, he'll have plenty of company.

    As for the two salaries: Yes, a legislator can simultaneously be an Alderman or Mayor.

  9. Pete, I don't know who blogger Fred is. It just seems screwy that someone could get paid full time wages to do part time jobs - and how could he could be effective at either one of them anyway - Turner has been washout as a state rep. for Racine anyway. What has brought to Racine? Nothing that I can see. It sounds like you don't mind the idea of a part time mayor and part time state rep.

  10. Pete- If you read the post it shows that Mason and Turner had a meeting to decide who will be the one running for mayor and keep other candidates. Choosing a candidate in a smoke filled room in Madison is very frightening. We, as Racine voters, should be participating.

  11. John,

    I read the post. I still say it means nothing.

    First, you have to believe it.

    Second, anyone can decide to run. We've already got five declared candidates.

    Finally, no smoke-filled room in Madison, even if such exists in that no smoking town, will have much impact on this race. Let 'em decide among themselves which will run ... makes no never-mind. As I said, we've already got five declared candidates and half a dozen mulling it over...

  12. Pete-

    1. It happened.

    2. This is about freezing out the other candidates.

    Sure anyone can file, but this is about preventing credible candidates from running.

    I want to know, no I demand, that Cory tells Racine what he got out of the deal.