March 13 is election day in Loxahatchee Groves.
Once again the ever optimistic, forever frustrated and mostly misrepresented few townsfolk who can be bothered will trudge wearily to the polls, hoping desperately for change but gloomily suspecting the status quo, like our roads, will be miserably maintained.
Who’s up? Ron Jarriel, (yeah… again, yawn), charismatic and keen new kid on the political chopping block Neil O’Neal, and Phillis Maniglia, a fine, sincere lady Ron once called “a waste” at a council meeting.
What’s new? Well, this is our first election to be fought not only on the streets and in the newspapers, but also on social media. And it has spawned a spooky thing.
A fearful, faceless, leaderless and apparently secret “organization” called “Friends of Ron” has developed a droning, detached, Lord Haw Haw propaganda style voice on social media. “It” has a view — vote for Ron — but little else.
Who are they? Where do they come from? Why are they here? What do they want?
Seriously, it’s disquieting, isn’t it? In a town as small as ours, dark folks, names a sinister secret. Frightened folks. Hiding their faces. Wonder what color pointy hats they wear?
“Friends of Ron” — it makes one wonder what Ron does for them to gain their friendship?
Whatever. Some people will do anything to get… well… whatever.
Change is screaming red letter overdue. Neither American presidents nor British prime ministers get four terms. No one can be any good for that long.
Sadly, we have a three-way competition.
Neil, either through naiveté or deliberation will split the vote and may well deliver the town back into the covert clutches of the “Friends of Ron.”
One can only hope that Neil loves the Groves enough to step down. Bluntly, a vote for Neil is a vote for Ron. Opportunity will knock repeatedly, Neil. Not this time, please?
In the meantime, judging by the amount of signs out there and word on the street, Phillis has an awful lot of friends, too.
I’m proud to be one of them.
And, unlike the creepy “Friends of Ron,” I’m not ashamed to put my name to supporting a friend. Go Phillis!
Tim Hart-Woods, Loxahatchee Groves