Dear Fellow Citizens,
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I write in opposition of the recall petition that is before us for a vote on September 1st. I have lived in Reading for 37 years and have served on the Town’s Recreation Committee for many of those. I am a former member of Reading Town Meeting. I know Select Board member Alvarado through her role, at one time, as Select Board liaison to the Recreation Committee.
In my due diligence to understand the genesis of the proposed recall of Ms. Alvarado, I still remain perplexed as to how we’ve gotten here. While the mechanism recall is part of our town charter, I don’t believe it applies accurately to this matter. As professor Thomas Patterson wrote, “Democracies depend on norms-unwritten rules about how leaders and citizens should behave. One norm is forbearance – the idea that political power should be used with restraint rather than weaponized and taken to its lawful limits.” It’s a norm of American politics that the outgoing elected official accept the change that comes with losing an election. The recall mechanism has never been exercised in Reading’s long history. We have always respected and supported the results of our elections. Let’s not act on personal bias or political considerations. If we want a change in town leadership, we can make that happen on Election Day in the spring as we always have. On September 1st, I will vote against the recall petition and ask that you consider doing the same.